Action Comics Weekly #622 (Blackhawk)
“The Big Blowoff”
Writer – Martin Pasko
Art – Rick Burchett
Letters – Steve Haynie
Colors – Tom Ziuko
Editor – Mike Gold
Today we say goodbye to the Blackhawk feature for a second time. We’re only going to get one more “go round” with the Boys during our Action Comics Daily endeavor… which really puts into perspective just how quickly this is all going by!
Picking up where we left off, Janos and Company are exiting the ruins, just as the Van der Houten goon is calling in the fact that he’d found the Japanese Jet… inside of Chekhov’s Volcano! Jan beans the fella in the dome with a stone before he finishes his report. Meanwhile, VdH orders the execution of his Blackhawk captives. Unfortunately for him, they’ve already freed themselves from their bonds… and have stolen a nearby Jeep to make their escape.
Meanwhile, Andre is… uh, banging his nurse, because that’s kinda what he does. Coitus is interrupted, however, by a VdH goon opening fire in his room. Andre manages to wriggle his way out, and as luck would have it, it’s the very moment when the rest of the gang just happened to be driving by.
The Blackhawks peel out and head for open road… and very nearly t-bone Janos’s Jeep! It’s a cute little scene. Van der Houten, who had dove out of the way of one of the Jeeps is helped to his feet by a goon.
The combined Blackhawks (and Company) board the Janos Jet and take off. It’s not long before Van der Houten (and Company) are in the air right behind them. VdH even opens fire, riddling the Blackhawk jet with holes. Remember that.
Janos steers right over Chekhov’s Volcano, with Van der Houten giving chase. The Volcano is just about to blow her top… and has the good sense to wait for the bad guy to be in the air above it before doing so! Sooo, that’s the end of Van der Houten.
We wrap up with Leslie… Steve… whatever his name is, offering Janos another gig… something concerning the C.I.A. Before agreeing, Janos heads toward the back of the jet. There, he discovers that when VdH opened fire on the plane, it wasn’t without casualty.
A tragic ending to what turned out to be a pretty tragic tale. The entire endeavor, from both sides, appeared to have been all for naught.
In reading the end, it’s hard not to sense the utter futility of everything that’s occurred up to this point. Let’s look at Van der Houten for a sec. He, I assume, wanted to find that Japanese Jet… little did he know that it was actually inside the Volcano… somewhere nobody would be able to get to it. He took hostages, killed people… was an all-around bad dude… ultimately, for nothing! Janos and Company arrived in Sumatra to rescue the Aviatrix… and they very nearly did it! They managed to get her into the air… but, she didn’t make it much further. So, at the end of the day… nobody gets what they wanted!
Overall, this was a really fun arc… and I’ll miss having a Blackhawk feature to read, enjoy, and discuss over the next several weeks. It’s recently been brought to my attention by longtime reader of this here blog, Matt O’Hara that these Blackhawk stories are going to be collected! The Blackhawks: Blood & Iron Hardcover will hit shelves on November 26, 2019. Not only will it include the three-part “Blood & Iron” story by Howard Chaykin, but also all three Action Comics Weekly arcs! It’s listed at $49.99, which might be a bit steep… but I’m sure there’ll be some deep discounts as the date approaches.
Before we go, I wanna mention the volcano… I’m really glad that sucker burst, otherwise all of my references to it being “Chekhov’s Volcano” would been even lamer than they were to begin with!
Tomorrow: The Compilation of #622… and then, something completely different!