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Thursday, 6 April 2017

Blackhawk 133 - Lady Blackhawk debuts

Lady Blackhawk, Zinda Blake, makes her debut in a Dillin and Cuidera story from Blackhawk 133 (Feb. 59). As much as I love the Lady Blackhawk that Gail Simone wrote about in Birds of Prey, Zinda was not with the team during World War 2.

Olaf gets captured by a villain known as the Scavenger, and the rest of the team comes to Africa while tracking him down. There they run into Zinda Blake, who already has made her Lady Blackhawk outfit. She is, essentially, a big fan who has just been waiting for her opportunity to join the team. One would almost suspect she was working with the Scavenger, just to get the Blackhawks to come to whatever part of Africa they happen to be in, although the story does not go there.

Lady Blackhawk and the rest of the team wind up captured by the Scavenger as well, though Zinda has some special gear that allows them to escape. Like Batwoman, this is all made to look like stuff women would traditionally carry. A harmless comb is really a lock pick.

The sexism doesn't end there. As impressive as Zinda is for much of the tale, she also gives away the Blackhawk's location when she sees a mouse and screams. Groan.

She does prove instrumental in defeating the Scavenger at the end of the tale, but still winds up feeling she is not worthy of being an actual Blackhawk yet. The final panel also makes her look literally twice as tall as Chop Chop. 

Lady Blackhawk did prove popular enough to return later in the year, along with the Scavenger again.

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