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Enemy Ace: War in Heaven

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From 1914 to 1918, Hans Von Hammer earned the nickname "The Hammer of Hell" in the bloody skies of World War I. Now it's World War II, and blood rains from the skies once again! Von Hammer, the finest pilot Germany has ever known, is now a 46-year-old man with plenty of enemies in the Nazi regime. This edition also includes a classic World War One Enemy Ace tale by creator From 1914 to 1918, Hans Von Hammer earned the nickname "The Hammer of Hell" in the bloody skies of World War I. Now it's World War II, and blood rains from the skies once again! Von Hammer, the finest pilot Germany has ever known, is now a 46-year-old man with plenty of enemies in the Nazi regime. This edition also includes a classic World War One Enemy Ace tale by creators Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert reprinted from STAR-SPANGLED WAR STORIES #139!


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From 1914 to 1918, Hans Von Hammer earned the nickname "The Hammer of Hell" in the bloody skies of World War I. Now it's World War II, and blood rains from the skies once again! Von Hammer, the finest pilot Germany has ever known, is now a 46-year-old man with plenty of enemies in the Nazi regime. This edition also includes a classic World War One Enemy Ace tale by creator From 1914 to 1918, Hans Von Hammer earned the nickname "The Hammer of Hell" in the bloody skies of World War I. Now it's World War II, and blood rains from the skies once again! Von Hammer, the finest pilot Germany has ever known, is now a 46-year-old man with plenty of enemies in the Nazi regime. This edition also includes a classic World War One Enemy Ace tale by creators Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert reprinted from STAR-SPANGLED WAR STORIES #139!

30 review for Enemy Ace: War in Heaven

  1. 4 out of 5

    Alejandro

    What happens when you are a patriot and a honorable gentleman but in the wrong side of the war? I was very happy to be able to get this mini-series in its original two issues in prestige format, while checking some boxes of back issues in my local comic book store. (Back in 2013) I am doing the review using this edition to be able to give a better overall review about the whole story. Enemy Ace, a.k.a. Hans Von Hammer, is a DC Comics' character created by Joe Kubert & Robert Kanigher, appearing What happens when you are a patriot and a honorable gentleman but in the wrong side of the war? I was very happy to be able to get this mini-series in its original two issues in prestige format, while checking some boxes of back issues in my local comic book store. (Back in 2013) I am doing the review using this edition to be able to give a better overall review about the whole story. Enemy Ace, a.k.a. Hans Von Hammer, is a DC Comics' character created by Joe Kubert & Robert Kanigher, appearing for the first time in the title Our Army at War #151 in 1965. Inspired on the historic real life character of the Red Baron (Manfred Von Richthofen). And the issues of Enemy Ace were quite a twist in the comic book title since while keeping telling about WWI, in this case, was from the point of view of him that he was fighting alongside the Kaiser's forces. Enemy Ace: War in Heaven is story telling the accounts of Hans Von Hammer BUT during the World War II, where he was persuaded to fight as pilot of the Luftwaffe of the Nazi Third Reich. The story is written by Garth Ennis and illustrated by Chris Weston (book one) and Russ Heath (book two). In the same way that the original stories of Enemy Ace used the Red Baron's career as a base, on this story were used in special the career of real life Luftwaffe's pilot, Adolf Galland. I always wanted to read something about Enemy Ace. Since the concept of this honorable caracter always in conflict between patriotism and reason was something really interesting. Here, Garth Ennis pulled maybe the best story about this character. Since, Hans Von Hammer was usually used on his regular time on the WWI but Ennis develops a brilliant arc with Von Hammer returning him to the skies but on WWII, and soon enough, the "Enemy Ace" soon realizes that this a very, VERY different war and he is not sure anymore if he is on the right side. He had his doubts against duty and honor during WWI, but now was totally something darker, cruelest and crazier. He accepted to fly to defend his nation, but NEVER to support the Nazi Party, and this is noticed on his planes. During both wars, he always painted his planes with color red, but during the WWII he refused to portrait the Nazi's swastika on the tails of his planes, declaring openly and without fear that he was against the insane people ruling the state. The story isn't afraid either to show not only the cruelties by the Nazi Third Reich, but also how the same as cruel and insane was the response by Russian Red Army during the conflict. Even it's possible that the creative team on the first book (Ennis & Weston) did a too good work, I say this since I am not sure why they changed the artist for the second part of this miniseries, with long runs is normal that at some point there is a change in the art department but for a miniseries of only 2 books? Still, Heath pulled a good art, maybe not as good as Weston, but quite good enough and luckily Garth Ennis was still the writer. However, I felt that they toned down a little of the crudeness of the story on the second book, while in the first one they really show strong and raw images of war. Maybe a directive from the editor or someone in a higher position. Still, the story is able to complete the narrative and closing in great way. Even you have a priceless great cameo character (from the DC Comics' lore of war stories) at the end of the story. You can perceive the inner conflicts of Hans Von Hammer between his hatred to the Nazis but his love for the German people and his duty to defend them. Remember that in Germany not all people were militaries, there were innocent civilians, many of them secretly opposed to the Nazi regime, but controlled by force and fear, and that they were the same as targeted for bombing. Many of us haven't lived ever in a totalitarian state, where used to be your home country, where you used to feel safe, but now they are telling you what to think and if you disagree, you are shoot to death. What to do when your own nation became your enemy? Intelligent dialogues, crisping characters and wonderful art showing exciting aerial combats make this story something highly recommended to any reader interested about this character and/or about World War II.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marquise

    Great story, and moving conclusion. I liked how the author opted for making this a story focusing on one man's harrowing experiences as a fighter pilot in a second war after having fought in WWI. It's not that common to have a middle-aged man for a hero, is it? I loved Hans von Hammer a lot, his character is a balanced mix of experience of old age and passion of youth. Every time he went on missions, I was a little afraid that he would die by the end before or after surrendering, and was glad tha Great story, and moving conclusion. I liked how the author opted for making this a story focusing on one man's harrowing experiences as a fighter pilot in a second war after having fought in WWI. It's not that common to have a middle-aged man for a hero, is it? I loved Hans von Hammer a lot, his character is a balanced mix of experience of old age and passion of youth. Every time he went on missions, I was a little afraid that he would die by the end before or after surrendering, and was glad that it didn’t happen. A very enjoyable story overall that I hope is continued somewhere, preferably with him during the first war.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Alasondro Alegré

    ★★★½

  4. 5 out of 5

    Checkman

    I grew up in the 70's and I was a big fan of Enemy Ace. The first time I read his adventures it was the three parter trilogy where he takes on Steve Savage aka The Balloon Buster. A few years later DC reprinted a couple of his stories and I was hooked. So when DC published the archives and Enemy Ace: War In Heaven I was interested. It took me a few years to actually get around to buying them. I'm a 43 year old man with a family, job etc. Things tend to happen that cause distractions, but I finall I grew up in the 70's and I was a big fan of Enemy Ace. The first time I read his adventures it was the three parter trilogy where he takes on Steve Savage aka The Balloon Buster. A few years later DC reprinted a couple of his stories and I was hooked. So when DC published the archives and Enemy Ace: War In Heaven I was interested. It took me a few years to actually get around to buying them. I'm a 43 year old man with a family, job etc. Things tend to happen that cause distractions, but I finally got around to purchasing both archive volumes and a copy of War In Heaven. It was worth the wait. As I got older and learned how to count years I realized that Hammer would only have been in his forties when WW2 began. I often wondered what the character would have done. Somehow the idea of just sitting out the war didn't seem believable.War In Heaven does a good job addressing that issue. I'm unfamiliar with Garth Ennis. The last time I was following comics it was the eighties and I was a college student. Then it was all about The Watchmen, Dark Night, Ronin, and so on. Mr. Ennis is a newcomer to me. I'm impressed with what he's done here. Even if much of his work doesn't appeal to me. This is a different Hammer from the one I grew up with. But that's okay. He's older, more mature and taciturn even in his thoughts. We all change as the years go by, or at least we should. Von Hammer has changed. Not as much introspection anymore. He knows what he is. No need to talk about it anymore.It's a done deal. We only see a glimpse of the younger Hammer a couple of times and then it's sparse.Enough for us to see that he is has changed, but that there is still humanity within "The Human Killing Machine". This was always his saving grace. I found that I liked the middle-aged Enemy Ace. I also found it to be believable that he would fight for the Nazis, because he was also fighting for Germany. Many a WW1 veteran fought for Nazi Germany because of their sense of loyalty. Many of them didn't like Hitler, but they couldn't turn their backs on their country. For better or for worse. Von Hammer is one of Germany's best warriors, a product of the German aristocracy. The Nazi's didn't like the aristocracy, but they needed them. It was a tense relationship and War In Heaven does a good job addressing this uneasy balancing act. I found the art to be excellent. And unlike some posters I liked the fact that Russ Heath worked on the second chapter.Heath was always my favorite artist back during the old Haunted Tank days. I liked his eye for technical details. It's a nice connection to the old Enemy Ace. But he isn't Kubert. I believe that if Kubert would have drawn the second chapter it would have been distracting. It would have been jarring to have Kubert draw the his most famous character in the jet age. It's been twenty years since I purchased a graphic novel. War In Heaven is a good way to end the dry spell.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Guilherme Smee

    Ás Inimigo é um personagem dos anos 50, criado por Robert Kanigher e Joe Kubert para a DC Comics. Ele é um aviador alemão da Primeira Guerra Mundial, que combate os britânicos. Sempre vemos, acompanhado dele, um lobo escuro, que representa a sua voracidade e irascibilidade na guerra, com o qual o Ás Inimigo conversa, mas nunca obtém resposta. Nesta HQ, Garth Ennis coloca o personagem de Kanigher e Kubert em outro cenário: o da Segunda Guerra Mundial e aqui, ele percebe que a coisa mudou - ao men Ás Inimigo é um personagem dos anos 50, criado por Robert Kanigher e Joe Kubert para a DC Comics. Ele é um aviador alemão da Primeira Guerra Mundial, que combate os britânicos. Sempre vemos, acompanhado dele, um lobo escuro, que representa a sua voracidade e irascibilidade na guerra, com o qual o Ás Inimigo conversa, mas nunca obtém resposta. Nesta HQ, Garth Ennis coloca o personagem de Kanigher e Kubert em outro cenário: o da Segunda Guerra Mundial e aqui, ele percebe que a coisa mudou - ao menos para ele - e começa a se dar conta dos horrores da guerra após seu avião cair na Rússia sitiada. O Ás Inimigo, então, renega sua pátria, renega Hitler e o mais embasbacante, renega a guerra e seu papel como piloto. Esse é mais um quadrinho de guerra de Ennis, que envolve lutas aéreas e seu tema favorito, a a camaradagem masculina. Também conta com a linda arte de Chris Weston, que aqui foi impressa em preto e braco, talvez realçando mais seus traços. Mas, infelizmente, Ás Inimigo: Inferno no Céu fica aquém de seus predecessores, tanto do original como a obra-prima pintada de George Pratt dos anos 90, que fez a cabeça de uma geração de leitores.

  6. 4 out of 5

    arjuna

    Thoroughly enjoyable - I'm a sucker for air war stories anyway, but this was great. Although not yet familiar with the original strip, the idea of a story that looked first at the man & pilot and secondly at the "hero" was very appealing; the further idea of transferring *that man* from a Great War to WW2 context was irresistible. Ennis handles it well - much more organically than (e.g.) the similar themes in his Dan Dare revisitation, even with the characteristic lapse into broad brush at times Thoroughly enjoyable - I'm a sucker for air war stories anyway, but this was great. Although not yet familiar with the original strip, the idea of a story that looked first at the man & pilot and secondly at the "hero" was very appealing; the further idea of transferring *that man* from a Great War to WW2 context was irresistible. Ennis handles it well - much more organically than (e.g.) the similar themes in his Dan Dare revisitation, even with the characteristic lapse into broad brush at times; the artwork is fantastic and dynamic and brings the text alive. Altogether very rewarding; brought back the genuine sense of enthralment I used to get from the Biggles books as a child. Thank you team. Now highly motivated to chase up the original. (Dear Mr Ennis: don't suppose you fancy tackling a Biggles envisioning or two, do you? I'd definitely pay to see that...)

  7. 4 out of 5

    Travis

    The Enemy Ace is one of the all time great historical comic book characters. He's a german world war one ace and yet, you end up rooting for. In this story, Von Hammer is dragged out of retirement by the Nazis to help the war effort. At first he's as happy as he ever gets, fighting for his country, but then slowly learns that there is something very wrong going on with the war effort and then finds himself caught between his personal honor and his loyalty to his country. Very dramatic, manly and f The Enemy Ace is one of the all time great historical comic book characters. He's a german world war one ace and yet, you end up rooting for. In this story, Von Hammer is dragged out of retirement by the Nazis to help the war effort. At first he's as happy as he ever gets, fighting for his country, but then slowly learns that there is something very wrong going on with the war effort and then finds himself caught between his personal honor and his loyalty to his country. Very dramatic, manly and full of gritty battle scenes. Nice ending and a clever surprise guest star. Garth Ennis should stop trying to write super heroes ( especially since he's horrible at it) and stick to war stories and westerns.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Stien

    war fiction with the perfect balance of adventure, excitement, cynicism, heroism and depression.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Timo

    Pretty damn good conclusion to Enemy Ace saga.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Doctor Alpha

    A blockbuster-ready version of Enemy Ace/Red Baron that has absolutely nothing to do with both the series by Kanigher and the historical figure with the usual gore and profanities you expect from your typical Garth Ennis schlock. Von Hammer/Richthofen insulting the memory of a servant he sympathized for and the soviets because their skills are inferior to his (good riddance the respect he showed on the battlefield to other fighters), as well as some other hamfisted things like the dog Von Hammer A blockbuster-ready version of Enemy Ace/Red Baron that has absolutely nothing to do with both the series by Kanigher and the historical figure with the usual gore and profanities you expect from your typical Garth Ennis schlock. Von Hammer/Richthofen insulting the memory of a servant he sympathized for and the soviets because their skills are inferior to his (good riddance the respect he showed on the battlefield to other fighters), as well as some other hamfisted things like the dog Von Hammer originally saw as the only true friend he had turned into some sort of an indian totemical spirit and a bashing of nazi racism Hans makes while happily spouting racist slur describing the french (the Hangman and his sister anyone?) and the poles (victims of the concentration camps system too), clarify that Ennis never cared about the source material outside some cheap visual references and a last-minute Sgt. Rock cameo. The reason being, I suspect, to sell this as the first draft of a dumbed-down WW2 movie in vein of Pearl Harbour and Saving the Private Ryan (because we all know those movies suck) to some Hollywood executives and not to produce a love letter to one of the best and most original characters DC ever in history. And what's up with the faces of Von Hammer and his friend Peter being nearly identical? complete nonsense. Fans of Rittmeister Hans Von Hammer/Manfred Von Richthofen better stay away as far as possible from this turd.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rick

    This story was kind of interesting but it just didn't live up to my expectations. I am a huge fan of Garth Ennis but this was not up to his usual standard in my opinion. It didn't help that the Germans were speaking in British slang, that broke any kind of immersion. I did cheat a bit by reading the two individual issues instead of the collected volume so I missed out on the bonus material.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ramon

    It's Ennis doing his beloved war comics with amazing artists. Of course I'm going to love it. He's good even when he's writing about the enemy, focusing on duty when faced with immoral behavior.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Malum

    Not as fun as the original tales, but still worth a read if you are into Enemy Ace or WWII stories.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Andy

    A few years ago I blind-bought The Enemy Ace Archives by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert and loved it. Initially I loved (and still love) Kubert’s art style, but grew to also love Kanigher’s simple but powerful storytelling. Enemy Ace was an unusual title for its time (mid-1960s) in that its hero was a World War I flying ace named Hans von Hammer. That’s right; he’s fighting on the German side, but he didn’t always feel so great about it. Garth Ennis picks up where the original left off, this time A few years ago I blind-bought The Enemy Ace Archives by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert and loved it. Initially I loved (and still love) Kubert’s art style, but grew to also love Kanigher’s simple but powerful storytelling. Enemy Ace was an unusual title for its time (mid-1960s) in that its hero was a World War I flying ace named Hans von Hammer. That’s right; he’s fighting on the German side, but he didn’t always feel so great about it. Garth Ennis picks up where the original left off, this time with an aging von Hammer living in secluded retirement. His old friend Peter wants Hans to join the war effort for Hitler. Hans isn’t sure; he is 46, after all, and isn’t really sure if he’s onboard with Hitler’s policies. But we know he’s going to join up and he does. What we don’t expect is…. Well, you’ll have to read it for yourself. Enemy Ace: War in Heaven covers only a two-issue mini-series, but it’s a good one. (The volume also includes a reprint of a Kanigher/Kubert story.) The only issue I had with the book is in distinguishing the characters of Hans and Peter. They look an awful lot alike and in many cases it’s very confusing who’s who. The graphic novel also doesn’t distinguish who drew/inked each issue, which seems to be different people. The art is stronger in the first issue and most of the “who’s who” problems appear in the second. Regardless, War in Heaven is an excellent read, especially for anyone who enjoys war comics.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brinstona

    What I liked about the comic book is that the soldiers spend time reminiscing about people they used to know but have been killed in the war, and it leads into the main character starting to think that the war is doing more harm than good, and especially when he gets stuck in Leningrad where he sees first hand, men being killed, children being killed, the homeless families starving. it's a dark story that involves a lot of death, but a great story if the reader enjoys fiction about real world ev What I liked about the comic book is that the soldiers spend time reminiscing about people they used to know but have been killed in the war, and it leads into the main character starting to think that the war is doing more harm than good, and especially when he gets stuck in Leningrad where he sees first hand, men being killed, children being killed, the homeless families starving. it's a dark story that involves a lot of death, but a great story if the reader enjoys fiction about real world events. illustrations are historical and machines are accurately portrayed. The visuals are accurate to what they would be in those situations. Airplanes, tanks and trucks and weapons are based off of real vehicle and uniforms and insignia (medals and ranking badges) are very accurate and realistic. Most of all, the story is based on a German in the World War II, in an allied country, you see the point of view from the good guys and not the other side who are humans also, and doing the same acts of war but to us they are the bad guys. Ultimately they are just people.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Les

    A good story with a sobering message about the futility and stupidity of war. While not being too familiar with the comic world, I have recently been enjoying a few good graphic novels and while browsing for these I came across Enemy Ace. An easy to read and action-packed classic comic format, with exploding B-17 bombers, zooming Messerschmitts, tough Russians and general carnage. Galloping through the pages I felt like a kid again, but it was the dialogue that kept snapping me out of it. Writte A good story with a sobering message about the futility and stupidity of war. While not being too familiar with the comic world, I have recently been enjoying a few good graphic novels and while browsing for these I came across Enemy Ace. An easy to read and action-packed classic comic format, with exploding B-17 bombers, zooming Messerschmitts, tough Russians and general carnage. Galloping through the pages I felt like a kid again, but it was the dialogue that kept snapping me out of it. Written more for a mature audience, it's a thought-provoking theme with some really good lines that lead you to reflect on the reasons for the fighting. As I said, it's sobering and the story comes to a satisfying end.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Mati

    It was like flesh from the sky when I discover comic Enemy Ace. I like war novels and war comic book too and this was utter jewel. The continuation of arc about German WW I. ace pilot, baron Hans von Hammer, who was nicknamed the hammer of hell and loved..no well would you love somebody who was called killing ruthless machine and had strange wolf as only friend? I would. I am. The noble pilot who was fighting for the baddies, but with principles and long forgotten chivalry. The art is fitting fo It was like flesh from the sky when I discover comic Enemy Ace. I like war novels and war comic book too and this was utter jewel. The continuation of arc about German WW I. ace pilot, baron Hans von Hammer, who was nicknamed the hammer of hell and loved..no well would you love somebody who was called killing ruthless machine and had strange wolf as only friend? I would. I am. The noble pilot who was fighting for the baddies, but with principles and long forgotten chivalry. The art is fitting for the story which is depressing and very dark, after all it is about war and death.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mayank Agarwal

    Nice Art, really enjoyed the drawings and the concept of the story. The Character seemed so super cool with his idelogys. The actual dialogues during dogfights went over my head ( too authentic for me)...didn't really know what was happening. Will try to get more Hans Von Hammer

  19. 4 out of 5

    Hugo

    Esta interesante, pero creo que poco veridico, creo que alguien tan insubordinado en las tropas Nazi no hubiera podido prosperar tanto, aun asi hay algunos pasajes que me gustaron y sobre todo las batallas en el aire, muy bien logradas.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Brent

    Russ Heath art! highly recommended.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Timothy Boyd

    Excellent story of the Enemy Ace of WWI, Hans Von Hammer, returning to the skies to fight again in WWII. The superb story and art makes this a joy to read. Very recommended.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jeff

  23. 4 out of 5

    Bernardo

  24. 5 out of 5

    Dave

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gerhard

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jesse

  27. 5 out of 5

    Michael Johnson

  28. 5 out of 5

    IGV

  29. 5 out of 5

    Tessa Withorn

  30. 5 out of 5

    Steve Merrill

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