We’ve waited what feels like a pretty long time to get a glimpse at the Justice Society heroes who will be appearing this summer in Black Adam. While we’ve gotten a few promising glimpses of Dwayne Johnson as the titular antihero, so far we’ve seen little to nothing of all the other superfolks involved. Well that ended on Friday. Warner Bros released a sizzle reel of all their big DC superhero theatrical releases for the upcoming year, including new footage from The Batman, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, The Flash, and Black Adam. Among the other Justice Society heroes in the trailer, we get our very first look at Aldis Hodge as Carter Hall, aka Hawkman. And man does he look good. You can watch the sizzle reel below.
In an interview with Geeks of Color last year, Aldis Hodge said he was excited to be able to given today’s children something he didn’t have. “I didn’t grow up watching superheroes that look like me.” Hodge said. “I remember in my early-teens maybe we came into [African-American heroes] Spawn and Blade, and that was awesome. So, to know that young kids are going to be able to see that and see opportunity, and have an awareness that I didn’t have at a young age about what they can accomplish, that really is fantastic.”
Obviously the most impressive shot of Aldis Hodge in the sizzle reel is when we see him with his iconic wings spread. Though it does appear that he’s there earlier in the reel. When Black Adam says “My son dreamt of a better world. That’s why he saved me,” we can see someone behind him, somewhat out of focus. Considering the shape of his helmet, that’s almost definitely Hawkman.
It also makes sense that out of all the members of the Justice Society we see in the Black Adam footage, the titular antihero would find some common ground with Carter Hall. The backstory of Aldis Hodge’s hero tends to be even more fluid and confusing than even your average comic book hero (none of whom tend to have particularly straightforward, unchanged origins). But, without getting too deep in that particular mire — in some of the more well known versions of Carter Hall’s origin, he’s a reincarnated prince from ancient Egypt which, of course, is the same birth place and time of Black Adam.
When Black Adam premieres this summer, Aldis Hodge will have the honor of being the first man to portray a live-action Hawkman on the big screen. But, he won’t the first live-action version of the character. Bill Nuckols played him in the 1979 TV special Legends of the Superheroes which also featured Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward as Robin. Michael Shanks (Stargate SG-1) had a recurring role as Hawkman in season 9 and 10 of Smallville. Most recently Falk Hentschel played him in The CW’s Arrowverse shows; beginning with a crossover between The Flash and Arrow, and then joining the season 1 cast of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.