Black Hammer, Volume 5: Reborn, Part One: 05/04/22
Black Hammer, Volume 5: Reborn, Part One by Jeff Lemire, Caitlin Yarsky (Illustrator) et. al begins a new arc where Lucy Weber looks back at her brief time at being the Black Hammer and resists as best she can at being the hero again, twenty years later.
Reborn, Part One is told out of sequence. Primarily the action takes place in 2016 where Lucy is a 40 year old mother of two in a failing marriage. Her husband, Eliot, had an affair and she can't forgive him for it. Meanwhile she suspects that her eldest is on drugs and is getting into trouble.
And then the weird shit starts to happen. The door that led to the pocket dimension where Lucy's father and the other heroes had been sent reopens. Along with it is the man who convinced Lucy to set aside her father's hammer twenty years earlier (1996).
There are also near the cliffhanger ending, glimpses of another time of a yet to be determined or revealed spot on the timeline. What we do know, though:
Until the cliffhanger, I would have rated Reborn, Part One five stars. The ending though that forces Lucy to become Black Hammer again is manipulative and unnecessarily melodramatic. It's a borderline fridging. Some time is spent on establishing characters for Lucy's family but there are better ways to force a character do something they've given up.
With the added time weirdness, I am going on a limb to say that the cliffhanger is a temporary thing. There might be some future reverse gotcha. If there isn't, I will revise my rating downwards.
Like the previous volumes, volume 5 sits on the Road Narrative Spectrum. The placement shifts back to something near to Black Hammer: Age of Doom (2019) which makes sense given the return of certain events and characters.
Once again the traveler is a family or couple (33) (depending on which year is being covered). The destination, though, is uhoria, as it's the back and forth across time lines that makes this story. The route is the labyrinth (99) as represented by Spiral City, the odd spatial anomalies, and finally by the events that force Lucy's transformation.
The sixth volume is Reborn: Part Two and is scheduled for release on June 14, 2022.