By Ben Morse
HOUSE OF M:
AVENGERS #1 cover
by Mike Perkins
In the world we know, the name "Avenger" comes with a certain amount of distinction. It labels one as a member of an elite fraternity also called "Earth's Mightiest Heroes" and represents the apex of what a champion for good can achieve.
Beginning next Wednesday, November 14, writer Christos Gage and artist Mike Perkins, the creative team behind last year's UNION JACK mini-series, reunite for a return to the alternate reality ruled by mutants introduced in 2005's landmark "House of M" event. The five-issue HOUSE OF M: AVENGERS will explore what it means to be an Avenger in a very different kind of world.
For the next week leading into the debut of HOUSE OF M: AVENGERS, each day Marvel.com will spotlight two of the book's cast of familiar but changed faces with Gage and Perkins exploring the journey they took to re-imagine these classic Marvel characters.
Today the spotlight falls on two star-crossed lovers getting a new chance in a new world: Hawkeye and Mockingbird.
In a place where everything we know has changed, one thing remains the same: the world still needs Avengers.
IN OUR WORLD:
HOUSE OF M:
Growing up as a circus performer alongside brother Barney, Clint Barton came under the tutelage of master archer Trickshot and eventually surpassed his teacher in terms of skill.
Leaving the carnival life in hopes of becoming an arrow-slinging crimefighter in the vein of Robin Hood, Clint fell in love with the beautiful Black Widow, in fact a Russian spy, and battled Iron Man, unwittingly becoming the criminal known as Hawkeye. Clint quickly reformed—later convincing the Widow to do the same—and gained Iron Man's recommendation to join the Avengers.
Hawkeye would become one of the most tenured of Earth's Mightiest Heroes, even founding and leading the West Coast branch for several years, during which time he met and married the love of his life, Mockingbird, and subsequently lost her when she died battling Mephisto.
Hawkeye would experience his own death and rebirth at the hands of insane teammate the Scarlet Witch, renaming himself Ronin upon his resurrection and joining the New Avengers.
"In a lot of ways, Hawkeye is one of the more
Black and white
HOUSE OF M:
familiar characters. Just as in the regular Marvel Universe, he started as a villain. He was guy who was a trick shot specialist in a circus, and the circus went under. The difference in the House of M world, the reason it went under is because no one is that impressed by the guy who can fire arrows when the little girl down the hall can shoot lasers out of her eyes.
So, he starts pulling heists, but his purpose is not so much to get money as it is to pull daring jobs to prove that a guy who can shoot arrows can still do some pretty impressive stuff, and can outsmart everybody else, all the mutants. He hooks up with Luke [Cage] because they have similar goals, which is to prove that they're not obsolete, that they are still relevant in this world."
"One of the greatest characters ever wearing one of the greatest costumes known to comics."
IN OUR WORLD:
Bobbi Morse had a decorated career as an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., but after helping Hawkeye to defeat the supervillain Crossfire, she fell in love with the archer and married him on the spot, leaving her job and former life behind.
Using her training as an expert in hand-to-hand and armed combat and trademark battle staves, Bobbi became known as Mockingbird and joined her husband as one of the charter members of the West Coast Avengers.
The couple would later experience marital difficulties and split, but reunited just before Mockingbird tragically fell in battle against the demon Mephisto.
"She is together with Hawkeye at the beginning [of the story], although it remains to be seen if they will stay together in this world. It also brings up that she's dead in the regular Marvel Universe—will she survive the story?
As in the regular Marvel Universe, she was a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, codenamed Mockingbird, and then when the mutants took over, she was made obsolete, all the humans were pushed out. A common thread that most of these characters share is fighting against their own obsolescence and trying to prove that they still matter."
"Not just Hawkeye's girlfriend. This girl carries a staff and knows how to use it."