The Black Hood #1
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The Black Hood #1

Writer: Duane Swierczynski Artist: Michael Gaydos Publisher: Dark Circle Comics Release Date: February 25, 2015 Cover Price: $3.99 Critic Reviews: 28 User Reviews: 8
8.7Critic Rating
8.8User Rating

New Ongoing Series! "The Bullet's Kiss," Part 1 of 5. When Philadelphia police officer Greg Hettinger stepped into the middle of a gunfight, hot lead shredded his face-and he pulled the trigger, blind. Now Greg is waking up in a world where he's a killer, hopelessly scarred and hooked on painkillers. What does a man do when he can no longer face the world, yet still wants to do good? He puts on a hood. Available with a regular die-cut cover by Michael Gaydos and variant covers by Francesco Francavilla, David Mack, Howard Chaykin, and David Williams.

  • 10
    Den Of Geek! - Chris Cummins Feb 24, 2015

    Vigliante stories are a dime a dozen in comics, so the fact that The Black Hoodsucceeds on every level is a testament to Dark Circle's curating of talent. As the book's much ballyhooed use of the f-word indicates, this is a bold attempt by Archie to further reinvent its image and show that these characters aren't a distraction from what's going on in Riverdale but instead a shattered funhouse mirror reflection of the bleak side of existence that the company has never before attempted to showcase with such skill. The industry may not realize it yet, but Dark Circle Comics just became a major player. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Comic Bastards - Dustin Cabeal Feb 25, 2015

    I've been looking forward to checking out the Dark Circle line of books and after this issue I will definitely be back for more of The Black Hood and the rest of the line. If you're looking for a truly realistic, dark and gritty superhero title that doesn't play to the clichs then check out The Black Hood #1. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Comic Vine - Tony 'G-Man' Guerrero Feb 25, 2015

    Get ready for a new take on an old character. The set up for THE BLACK HOOD is great. It feels like we're reading something new. It's something we haven't necessarily seen time and time again in the past. Duane Swierczynski does a great job in creating a new character in Greg Hettinger and fleshes him out nicely. We know superhero origins often involve tragedy but Swierczynski gives us one with a different perspective. Michael Gaydos' art along with Kelly Fitzpatrick's colors are perfect in topping off the tone of the book. If this is any indication in what we can expect in future Dark Circle comics, we have a lot to look forward to. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Critical Blast - Mike Maillaro Feb 28, 2015

    It's almost cliche at this point to talk about the "new" grown up attitude over at Archie Comics. Sure, there are still some terrific all ages books (I especially like Mega Man, and my kids are huge fans of the Sonic line, especially Sonic Boom), but that hasn't stopped Archie from trying some new things, to great success. I hope that these Dark Circle books do well. I really enjoyed Black Hood. It might have been the best book I read this week...though Amazing Spider-Man came close. If this is the quality we can expect from this line, definitely count me in! Read Full Review

  • 10
    Rhymes With Geek - J. Reifler Feb 24, 2015

    Buy The Black Hood #1. It feels like the start of something of something new and dangerous from Dark Circle. While I am crossing my fingers that the rest of the titles in this line have the same level of shock and awe I can whole heartedly put my endorsement behind this opening issue. The Black Hood is here and the streets will never be quiet again. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Comic Spectrum - Adam Alamo Feb 26, 2015

    The tale of the Black Hood is about as different from those set in idyllic Riverdale as one can get. Set in a city that is dangerous and unforgiving, the man destined to become the Black Hood is at best an anti-hero, though his journey towards redemption is only just beginning. Duane Swierczynski adeptly flexes his crime writer skills to present a piece of noir fiction that marks a distinctly dark turn for an Archie publication, but it's refreshing that the publisher is taking chances to tell this kind of story. Together with the amazing art of Michael Gaydos, I think the Black Hood is a strong start for the Dark Circle Comics imprint and raises the bar for its other upcoming releases. As if I wasn't on board already, I now await more Dark Circle comics with great anticipation. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Comic Book Bin - Andy Frisk Feb 27, 2015

    Archie Comics have really been churning out the hits recently and if the rest of their new line of superhero comics is anything near the quality of The Black Hood #1, then not only will be some of the best reads, they will be some of the most successful as well. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Bloody Disgusting - Bree Ogden Feb 13, 2015

    You'll want to add this to your pull list. In fact, call your local comic shop today and make sure they order this comic. Because if you thought you were blown away by Archie's dark turn with "Afterlife" you haven't seen anything yet. *Note: be sure to check out the abundance of phenomenal variant covers for "The Black Hood" #1. Read Full Review

  • 9.6
    Geeked Out Nation - Joe Winder Feb 26, 2015

    This was a great first issue out of the gate, I am positive that it will continue to stay strong. Everything in this issue was amazing and I truly cannot wait for the next issue. Even if I had never been to Philly the story alone is enough to get me hooked. I highly recommend this book and hope to see this series last a long time. Read Full Review

  • 9.5
    Coming Up Comics - David Melton Feb 24, 2015

    I love characters that aren't meant to be one thing. Aren't meant to be just good or just bad. That's not realistic. Life is much more complicated than that; people are much more complicated than that. It should be a blast seeing where these creators take this character. At the moment, it's a strong showing from Dark Circle Comics as they bring the goods immediately. Read Full Review

  • 9.5
    Comicosity - Matt Santori Jan 30, 2015

    Weve seen a lot of what Archie Comics is capable of these past few years, but if Black Hood is any indication, we havent seen anything yet. A perfect start to a guaranteed modern classic, this book fulfills every expectation for what a brilliant first issue can be coming in fast and furious and leaving on a last page high. The pacing is smart. The art is disturbingly gorgeous. And more than anything else, the protagonist himself is utterly engaging. If you like your heroes less than shiny and crime dramas littered with authenticity, this is one book you cant afford to pass up. Read Full Review

  • 9.3
    Major Spoilers - Wayne Hall Mar 1, 2015

    A terrific start to a new universe! Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Horror DNA - James Ferguson Mar 6, 2015

    The Black Hood is off to a promising start. If there were ever a true-blue vigilante in our world (and I'm not counting those guys like Phoenix Jones), this would be the blueprint for it. It wouldn't be some billionaire with gadgets and gizmos or a suit of armor. It would be a guy in a mask with two bloody fists, beating up thugs in an alley. He'd have nothing else to lose which makes him pretty friggin' scary. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Comic Book City Podcast - Jazmin Aguilera Feb 25, 2015

    A neo-noir set in Philadelphia, Black Hood #1 is a welcome foray into the classic dark yet sexy world of gutter crime thrillers. It's Taxi Driver meets Batman meets real-fucking-life. This is a movie in print. Read Full Review

  • 8.8
    Comic Crusaders - Martin Ferretti Feb 25, 2015

    While The Black Hood may have debuted during the golden age of comics, don't think that this is just a tired rehash of old characters and concepts. Swierczynski and Gaydon have done an amazing job at updating the book to modern times, and creating one of the most polished and emotional books of 2015. If this title is any indication of what's to come, I expect a lot of people will be adding Archie and Dark Circle books to their pull list. The Black Hood #1 is a must read. Read Full Review

  • 8.8
    Multiversity Comics - Jess Camacho Feb 2, 2015

    "The Black Hood" is not for everyone. This is a dark, bleak vision of vigilante justice that never once tries to make you laugh. It's a bold new turn for Archie Comics as a publisher that invites a brand new group of fans to the company. Read Full Review

  • 8.4
    IGN - Jesse Schedeen Jan 30, 2015

    Black Hood #1 is a slow debut for the new series, but that approach allows the creative team to really dig into the psychology of the new hero and build his world. This comic doesn't make the mistake of doing dark and gritty for the sake of being dark and gritty. Swierczynski and Gaydos craft a compelling character study and crime drama here. Whether the book will or even should evolve into a true superhero tale remains to be seen. Read Full Review

  • 8.4
    The Fandom Post - Chris Beveridge Feb 25, 2015

    Dark Circle Comics is making a bold statement with its first book by going with something as gritty and crime drama oriented as this is. And that's not a bad thing. They've got three interesting titles slotted over the next couple of months to start and we're obviously not getting three books of the same style and nature, but I'm definitely enjoying the serious and strong progression that's made in exploring the character of Greg here with how, over the course of several months, the loss of his sense of self will allow him to reinvent himself in this new way. There are a slew of challenges ahead, for the character and the creative team, because there are numerous traps to fall into where things will be too easy or obvious. I'm hopeful that with this strong start that we'll get something that really strikes out into some engaging territory, that has something to say, because that's what The Black Hood is all about. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Pop Culture Uncovered - Brett I Feb 26, 2015

    This book was a lot of fun for me, and if you love this genre I mentioned, you should seek it out. If hesitant, I would recommend grabbing this either with issue 2 when it comes out, or just reading both together. Either way, I enjoyed this very much, and Im glad I took a chance on it. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Newsarama - David Pepose Jan 28, 2015

    Haunted antiheroes are a dime a dozen in comics, but what gets me the most about The Black Hood is how aware its protagonist is of his own damnation. It's hard to beat up on Hettinger any more than he himself already has - his self-loathing is powerful, potent, and perhaps most importantly, doesn't diminish from him as a relatable character. Superheroism is often seen in comics as empowering, as an escape, but here, it feels like a symptom of a deeper sickness. There's something magnetic about watching this character lose himself, bit by bit, until there's nothing left. That's the secret of The Black Hood. It's not just a mask - it's a reflection of the man underneath. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    AIPT - John F. Trent Feb 25, 2015

    Duane Swierczynski and Michael Gaydos create a dark brooding hero who has lost his identity after a tragic shooting. The character development of Gregory Heittinger is the highlight of this issue. He is troubled, fearful, dependent, and lost, but he is able to find something within him to overcome and strive to do the right thing. His character exploration also examines the costs associated with PTSD and what it can do to an individual and it is not pretty. The artwork and coloring match the character creating a dark gloomy Philadelphia. However there were some setbacks including certain panels not matching up to the narrative as well as school children looking like prisoners wearing a very prominent (not in a good way) label describing what school they are from. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Outright Geekery - Akadavid Feb 28, 2015

    The Black Hood is off to a good start. I hope that the team ofSwierczynski and Gaydos can pull off a realistic antihero story without the pitfalls that accompany such stories. I'm looking forward to the second issue because I want to see what they are going to take Greg Hettinger as the Black Hood. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    All-Comic - Tyler Goulet Feb 25, 2015

    Maybe the shotgun comment earlier was a little over the top, butThe Black Hood certainly leaves an impression.It feels like a real story, about a real guy going through issues that anybody in his shoes might have to go through. For those looking for a comparison, you might put it in the same vein asPunisher, particularly the MAX stuff, but somehow more refined and down to Earth, without all that Marvel craziness. Regardless of any potential comparisons, this story makes a hell of a statement for the Dark Circle Comics line and certainly to all other creators out there.The Black Hood is here to stay and if this issue is any indication it's going to be one crazy ride. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Comic Book Resources - Matt Little Jan 29, 2015

    "The Black Hood" #1 is a thrilling start to a new publishing initiative, so far removed from any previous iteration of this concept. The quality of the storytelling is top notch and I am looking forward to seeing how far down the rabbit hole Greg Hettinger is going to travel. Dark Circle Comics comes out swinging and "The Black Hood" feels like a direct hit. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Newsarama - Richard Gray Feb 24, 2015

    Literally killing off original Black Hood "Kip" Burland in the process, The Black Hood might look backwards in its aesthetic, but is determined to reinvent a pulp era character. Unlike DC's comparable revival of the Charlton characters, it's a series that both thoroughly modern and rich with its own history. Coupled with outstanding artwork, it marks the start of a new era for Archie Comics, one that promises to change perceptions even further. Read Full Review

  • 7.0
    Comics Bulletin - Jennifer Flatebo Mar 3, 2015

    Relatable, perhaps chiefly in part of Michael Gaydos (Manhunter) nitty and gritty art. Everything appears so torn and weathered, as if Dark Circle were the All-New reimaging of Marvel Knights. And yet despite my limited knowledge of the original 40s version (Archie Comics) of Black Hood, you can count this Sister looking forward to the next installment to see what Hettinger will do next. Its almost as if he is becoming the man he killed to get rid of the guilt of taking a life: A story us comic geeks will apparently never get sick of. Read Full Review

  • 7.0
    Newsarama - Michael Moccio Feb 25, 2015

    It was certainly a surprise to hear that Dark Circle Comics would be trying out a dark and gritty superhero story when so many fans have complained about an overabundance of that kind of story. It wasn't a surprise, however, to see that writer Duane Swierczynski and artists Michael Gaydos and Kelly Fitzpatrick were able to tell the beginnings of a dark and gritty superhero without making readers feel emotionally drained afterwards. What the entire team accomplishes in The Black Hood #1 amounts to a solid start that promises a story about the complexities of taking up the superhero mantle while also dealing with the decisions you've made in the past. Dark Circle promised us great character-driven stories, and it looks like they're set out to meet that promise. Read Full Review

  • 4.0
    Chuck's Comic Of The Day - Glen Davis Mar 7, 2015

    To be honest, I found it pretty much by the numbers and fairly tedious. The art and the black pages really make the comic gritty. Read Full Review

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