So much action happened in this issue, with the uniquely designed Mother Machine reappearing, but despite all the action and the interesting technological babble, this issue was not satisfying after two solid issues.While trying to deal with the madness that is Titus back at the Blackhawk's base, Canada and Wildman continue to explore the wonders of a technologically advanced city run by the immortal Mother Machine, who seems too good to be true.Writer Mike Costa throws everything at us in this issue, but fails to create any anticipation and is all over the place making the story somewhat convoluted. There are sword battles, machines, gun fights, nanotechnology and talking dogs... and no, there is no point to having talking dogs in this issue. It feels like everything is being crammed into this story in an attempt to build suspense, but by the end everything is so jumbled together it is hard to remember everything that happens – or, even harder – what was important. The fact that the team may have been exposed online is slightly touched upon in the beginning and feels like a quick snapshot that was – like all plot points – thrown in with everything else.Mother Machine was glimpsed before in a previous issue of Blackhawks and that peek was enough to make her seem menacing and unique, because of her creative design. But in this issue, Mother Machine is constantly talking without emotion and quickly bores the reader. Seeing her so much also highlights some problems with her character design. Too much is going on with her: numerous wires, big robotic green arms and hands that look very misplaced on her body. The interesting feature about her is the reader's inability to see her face, which is covered with a helmet. This does help her character retain a sliver of her mystery.A lot more of Lady Blackhawk (not the blonde bombshell Lady Blackhawk, the other one nobody knew existed until this series) is seen in this issue, but it is hard to tell if she is enjoyable. She feels like a very rigid take-charge character who has little regard for her superiors. Her conversation with Titus was entertaining however, because Titus is still a mysterious and interesting villain and is drawn surprisingly menacingly, adding a great tone to his character.Kunoichi is an interesting character and she does help the team in this issue in a somewhat entertaining way, but she could have done more. Also, never once does she or Wildman express any emotion for each other. A first time reader would have no idea the two are involved (albeit secretly, but you'd think one would think something about the other's absence).The action scenes are fleeting in this issue, but are done well with little violence seen until the very end. It follows the show-and-don't-tell technique that does not always work. It was not necessary. As long as the action does not go overboard, Blackhawks could benefit from a little more blood.Graham Nolan's art brought down this comic. There are too many lines marring too many faces; almost everyone has depressed cheekbones and lines around the lips, which completely ruined some of the Mother Machine images that could have been very intense.I have no idea what the direction for Blackhawks is and the series is starting to worry me. They crammed so much into the story that the direction it may be heading is one that I suspect will turn readers off – this issue was hard to understand, and most readers will probably drop the title. I'm going to stick around for one more and hope Costa can focus on one thing at a time, which has proven fairly successful in the past.
An all-around nerdette, I’m a comic book connoisseur, horror aficionado, video game addict, anime enthusiast and an aspiring novelist/comic book writer. I am the head of the comic book department and the editor-in-chief of Entertainment Fuse. I also write and edit articles for Comic Frontline. I am also an intern at Action Lab Entertainment, a comic book publisher at which I edit comic book scripts, help work on images in solicitations and help with other comic book related project. My own personal website is comicmaven.com.