The way Hawkeye was compromised by the burden of a monthly schedule dovetails with the recent conversation about creative credit, and how it is in a corporation’s interest to elide that where possible. (It’s Marvel’s Spider-Man, not Steve Ditko’s.)
In video games a player has to want to find out who made a game, whereas even a moderately attentive comics reader can recognise an art style after an issue or two, so it takes a more concerted effort on the publisher’s part to undermine that contribution. Enforcing a strict monthly schedule, which is impossible for the vast majority of modern artists to meet, is one way of doing that. (It also helps with Marvel’s other goal of flooding the shelves to maintain market share.)
It’s obvious Fraction doesn’t want to have the key chapters of Hawkeye drawn by anyone other than Aja, so without the option of simply delaying subsequent issues, he’s forced to spin more and more tangents off from the plot to fill time. As talented as all the fill-in artists are, this made the series less and less enjoyable to follow monthly, and is to the permanent detriment of the story’s pacing, even for a reader coming to the (slightly re-ordered) collections years later.
Having said all that, it really is a great superhero comic, and one I’m excited to revisit after this episode’s conversation. (Curmudgeonly purist that I am, I actually skipped the Francavilla issues on release - clearly I need to rectify that). I’d also recommend Aja and Fraction’s first collaboration, The Immortal Iron Fist (though it does sadly suffer a similar fate of scheduling).