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Enemy Ace was one of DC's numerous war comics back in the day, from when certain restrictions to the superhero genre in the mid-1960s lead to the creation of Sgt. Rock, the Losers, Johnny Cloud (Navajo Flying Ace) and others. However, unlike many of his contemporaries, Hans von Hammer's original series was based during the First World War, inspired by such historical figures as the Red Baron, and fitting the morally ambiguous nature of the conflict, he was depicted as a noble, if not good, man who ended up fighting in a war that didn't necessarily have a "right" side.

Skip forward a few decades, and Garth Ennis decided to revive the character and place an older Hans in the 1940s to see how the far less grey nature of the Second World War would effect the character... And this was what we got.
15 pages out of 50 )
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It is a cold blustery day here with lots of dark puffy clouds. This can mean only one thing...time for another Enemy Ace post ...

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Neal Adams draws Joe Kubert inks. Can you ask more from a comic ? I think not...

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Last issue of Enemy Ace, we met the Hunter, that great Canadian ace (eh-ce?) who flew without goggles or a cap. And if you thought that was unrealistic, well... you might wanna skip this one.

"Uh, sir? Command is okay with the medieval armor, but don't you think the ladies' undergarments are a bit much?"

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This literally fell off a shelf and hit me in the head...

The is about Hans VonHammer (The Enemy Ace) in WW2. Normally when you hear about projects like this you just want to cringe,happily this one bucks the trend :)

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As an alternative to Rape Week (people, people, if you do that, Fred Van Lente wins), how about War Week? It's alliterative and it gives me an excuse to post Enemy Ace.

Now, we probably all know about Sgt. Rock, the Howling Commandos, and their ilk. Enemy Ace is a different breed entirely, centering on a flying ace during WW1. The rub being that he flies for Germany.

It's rather interesting to see the approach that the creators use to get it away with this. The keypoint is that Hans von Hammer (or the Hammer of Hell, as he's known in "holy fuckballs, this guy is crazy" circles) bears no malice toward his enemies. Pilots on both sides treat each other with an almost chivalrous sense of honor, and the real enemy (as von Hammer muses at length) is the sky, which will one day claim them all. In the first Showcase volume, the only real villain (not antagonist) is Bull, a treacherous pilot in von Hammer's own squad.

Now you may think the lack of any real boo-hiss villains would limit the story, but by putting von Hammer on "the wrong side", Robert Kanigher is able to write him with a sense of moral ambiguity that it's hard to imagine him getting away with for, say, Sergeant Rock. The series toys a lot with whether von Hammer is a war hero or a sociopath, generally in (admittedly formulaic) scenes where von Hammer is whispered about behind his back, imagines his plane as an accuser, and seeks the comfort of another "killing machine," a wolf he encounters on his hunting trips.

But enough from me, who wants to see some Joe Kubert art?


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