Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Black Hawk, Part 2

NAME
Black Hawk, Part 2

FIRST PUBLISHED
Tornado Issue 5

DATELINE
21 Apr 79

This issue of Tornado also featured The Angry Planet, The Mind Of Wolfie Smith, Wagner's Walk, Victor Drago, Storm, Captain Klep, Tornado's Gallery of Heroes and a The Angry Planet cover by Ian Kennedy.

PAGE COUNT
4

REPRINTS
Black Hawk: The Intergalactic Gladiator.

SYNOPSIS
Black Hawk begins his recruitment.

FIRSTS & LASTS
First appearance of Stronus, Batus and a new Black Hawk logo.

INFORMATION
Gladiators can be bought out of their responsibilities. Condemned men can have their convictions revoked by a tribune.

The Emperor decides who lives and dies at the coliseum.

BLACK HAWK
He seeks men to serve under him at the coliseum. He recruits Batus and Stronus from the coliseum, and a group of condemned men from a hill of execution.

OTHER CHARACTERS
'THE HUNTRESS'
She accompanies Black Hawk in his search for 100 men willing to serve under him. She forces the Emperor into a thumbs up that spares Stronus' life. She leads Black Hawk to a group of condemned men on a hill of execution.

CRASSUS
He follows Black Hawk. He acts as tribune to revoke the punishments of the group of condemned men that Black Hawk seeks to recruit.

BATUS
Ex-Sergeant in the Legions. A forkfighter. He is forced to fight Stronus in the coliseum. He wins and looks to the Emperor, who is forced into a thumbs up by the Huntress that spares Stronus. Black Hawk convinces Batus to join him and buys his release.

STRONUS
Ex-Sergeant in the Legions. A swordsman. He is forced to fight Batus in the coliseum. He loses, but is spared by the Emperor after the intervention of the Huntress. Black Hawk convinces Stronus to join him and buys his release.

THE EMPEROR
He attends a gladiatorial fight at the coliseum. He attempts to give a thumbs down, but the Huntress forces him into a thumbs up.

DEATHS
None.

BEST LINES
None.

WORST LINES
Emperor: "By Zeus!"

It's a bit odd that the Roman Emperor invokes a Greek god.

CATCHPHRASES
None.

CONTINUITY & CROSSOVERS
None.

INFLUENCES & REFERENCES
Batus means either blackberry bush, raspberry bush or bramble in the Latin. Contrary to popular belief, the emperor did not give a thumbs down (or up for that matter) to a gladiator as a signal to kill his opponent. The emperor would reportedly show an open palm to spare the loser, while a fist meant kill him. If the victor killed his opponent before the emperor gave permission, the gladiator would be put on trial for murder, as only the emperor had the right to condemn a man to death. If this strip is set in 50 A.D., then the emperor is Claudius.

MISTAKES
The first caption states that this strip takes place in 50 AD, which would be a hundred years after Part 1.

RETROSPECT
None.

NOTES
None.

CREDITS
Script: Gerry Finley-Day
Artist: Alfonso Azpiri
Letters: Unknown

REVIEW
Another packed part that sees Black Hawk adjust to life in Rome exceptionally well, gives the Huntress plenty to do and makes Crassus a far more complicated villain than he might have originally appeared.

Next Week: Unclean