Oliver Queen’s really got his work cut out for him: troubles with managing his company, strains in his friendships with the folks at Q-Core, and the old giant toxic monster out to kill him. That’s the situation Dan Jurgens and Keith Giffen present in Green Arrow #5. Issue #4, in my opinion, really revitalized this series which has received a lot of flak from classic GA fans for the liberties taken in the New 52. Does this issue seem like its continuing to take things in the right direction? Or is it straying towards the dens of mediocrity or, worse, plain old trash?
Narrowly surviving an encounter with the assassin Blood Rose, Oliver Queen is on the hunt for answers: who is she and why is she after his life? Meanwhile, the lax son of privilege faces trouble within his company, as his supervisors continue to crack down on his lackadaisical attitude. Ultimately, however, Queen gets no time to ponder as a massive mutated monstrosity, Midas, assaults Queen Industries with the goal of finding and killing Green Arrow for hurting his “beloved” Blood Rose. What ensues is a fight for survival and Green Arrow’s going to need a lot of smarts, and even more luck, if he wants to survive this deadly encounter.
The current Green Arrow story arc continues fairly well in this issue. We get to see some of Midas’s past; I think it’s rather interesting that his current “condition” is the result of eco-terrorism and mutation via toxic waste, an issue of political and environmental concern that was more prominent in stories of the 60s and 70s, but is still relevant today. His powers of decay relate to this origin, and I like that he has an original set of abilities. We’re also treated to more information on the relationship between Blood Rose and Midas: it is hinted that there is some romantic link between the two, though it may just be a one-sided love from Midas. Blood Rose’s complexity grows through these revelations, and perhaps she’s using Midas for some ulterior motive, though that’s just speculation on my part. The rest of the comic is essentially one big fight scene, but as a lover of excitement I enjoyed it quite a bit. There were a few humorous moments thrown in, giving us a few signs of “classic Ollie.” The ending of the comic was a superb cliffhanger. Midas’s way of speaking, while interesting, was the one thing I disliked about the comic. Ultimately, Green Arrow #5 is a good read.
Green Arrow #5‘s art is fairly good, similar to that of the previous issue (as expected given its the same art team). I found Midas’s design disturbing, which is great considering his origin story and his position as an antagonistic monster. I will say, however, that his cover design looked a lot cooler, though perhaps with too little decay. Other than that, the art was fairly standard without anything too impressive or shocking.
All in all, Green Arrow #5 is an enjoyable comic that continues the series in a valuable way. The current arc is slated to end (coupled with a change in the writing and art team) in Issue #6, so I’ll have to see if things wrap up well before Anne Nocenti and Harvey Tolibao take over. I’d say this issue is worth the buy for anyone following the series or anyone willing to give Green Arrow a shot (pun intended).
Brett Simon is a twenty-two year old comic enthusiast. He just re-read Quiver and sort of wishes that Kevin Smith was the eternal writer for Green Arrow.
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