Friday, June 25, 2010

Comic Book Review: Green Arrow #1

Oliver Queen's been lots of different things in his life. Spoiled rich brat, Justice Leaguer, opinionated politician, dead, resurrected, crappy and then positive father, mentor, and husband. Until recently, the status quo hadn't really changed much, but that all changed about six months ago, with the final issue of James Robinson's Cry For Justice miniseries. In the final page, Ollie did the unthinkable: murdered a villain who was responsible for the destruction of Star City, not to mention the death of thousands.

Oliver eventually realized that his actions were wrong, and he turned himself in to stand on trial for his crime. In prison, he would lose everything, his secret identity, his friends, and more importantly, his wife. Oliver did get one break though, he was acquitted for his crimes, yet he was banished from Star City. With nothing left, Oliver took to the mysterious forest that generated from the white ring in Brightest Day, becoming Green Arrow full time.

With all this drama going on in Green Arrow's life, DC felt it would be a good time for a relaunch, so JT Krul, who took over the Arrow-family after Cry For Justice, brings us a new chapter in Oliver's life, Green Arrow #1. Krul takes us back to the original inspiration for Ollie, Robin Hood, the man of people.

In short, this issue establishes Green Arrow's new life, the much more violent man who will steal from the rich, to give to the poor. And with Star City still recovering from it's destruction months ago, it has many poor, yet the rich aren't so willing to give. Corruption begins to overwhelm the city with it's crooked politicians, and the people are becoming more and more impatient with the lack of resources. With these constants it creates a fend for yourself attitude, and a battle for power emerges between the people, and the politicians.

We also get a peek at the new Queen Industries, who are entering new ownership since Ollie is gone. The new owner is an eccentric billionaire from Russia, Isabel Rochev, and she plans to make Queen Industries a power again by expanding their services. The first area of expansion is their new Defense Contracting, and the first client, Star City. The city government requests Queen Industries create weapons for them, and the company complies with a army of super soldiers. With the new fleet of defense, they are determined to restore order, even if it means taking out the Green Arrow.

Green Arrow relaunch was a great starting point, a strong beginning for everyones favorite Emerald Archer. Krul did a really good job making Ollie a hero again, a figure and a symbol for the broken people of Star City. I hope Krul doesn't disappoint us again, as we know he's capable of destroying everything likable about a character as noted by the remarkably awful Rise of Arsenal.

It looks like Ollie will be fun again though, so maybe the Brightest Day banner on the top will prove true after all. Brightest Day indeed.

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