I put up an article last week about my life long affair with the Green Arrow. Some good, some bad, mostly disappointment. I do not like to see Oliver Queen in the big leagues. He is not some all powerful godlike super hero, he is not the fastest man alive, he is not even the worlds greatest detective. He is just some guy with a big bank account looking out for the little guy. There is no place for him to be fighting Darkseid with the rest of the big hitters. Sure, he pitches in and does his part where he can, but that is not where Green Arrow is best utilized.
The emerald archer has a clear influence from historic fictional character, Robin Hood. A character that hides in the forest, makes jabs where he can, and gives back to the underprivileged. The Arrow should represent the same. The best Green Arrow books are the ones where he sneaks around in the shadows, takes out scum-bag fat cats, drug dealers and pimps and turns around to help the orphans, or mistreated prostitutes and druggies. He is an underground hero of the people. Unfortunately, as great of reading that can be, he is hardly ever used like such, and the new 52 just perpetuates a cocky, overzealous, overhyped, Oliver Queen.
In 2011, post Flashpoint continuity, DC launched the unnecessary new 52 initiative. Rebooting 52 main titles to #1, including Green Arrow. This is directly after two, 2, reboots of the character in the same amount of years. Within the first 17 issues the new title was written by five, 5, different writers. J.T. Krul met with negative feedback, replaced by Keith Giffen and Dan Jurgens, who did not fair any better, were in turn replaced by Ann Nocenti who was also not received well. Then the title was stabilized by who else, but this bloggers personal favorite, Jeff Lemire. But this reading/review is just a precursor to the Lemire takeover.
New 52 Green Arrow features an established billionaire in Oliver Queen. Running Q-Core, a communications technology company that is a subsidiary of Queen Industries and a blatant rip off of Apple. Oliver uses these resources to fund his alter ego gig as Green Arrow. Based in Seattle, Arrow fights for justice across the globe, taking on a gang of YouTuber supervillains and other non-sensical bad guys.
Honestly, it was hard to read. A complete injustice to the character and his roots. If it was not for my love of the character and the eventual relief of such a talented writer, I would not have finished the first two graphic novels. The characters were a flop, the plots were uninteresting, and the world created for the Arrow felt too much like they were trying to recreate whatever magic that made the television show, Arrow, so popular.
An unfortunate misdirection for a character with so much potential. I give volume one a solid 1/5 and volume 2 a sketchy 2/5. Unless you are like me and want to see how this felt and watch how Jeff Lemire turns it all around, I would not recommend this title at all. One day they will get a Green Arrow title right again.
Thanks booknerds, off to bigger, better books.