“Hey, that Silverwolf guy constantly says he loves Green Arrow, but he hasn’t review the comic in months!” I hear you, loyal readers. See, I’ve recently moved to the Midwest, a place of much snow and, as a result, comic book shipment delays. The last two months have seen the first new comic book day of each month delayed by several days, preventing me from reviewing Green Arrow the week it lands. Sure, I could have waited, but…well, with so many great books coming out it’s sometimes hard to find time to review them all!
Nevertheless, the Lords of Weather were kind to me this month, and delivered unto me a day of light snow, meaning I could actually read Green Arrow #28 on release day and have a review for all of you ready to go! Now, the title is embroiled in an arc called the “Outsiders War,” which reveals much of the history of not only this shadowy band of weapon-worshiping clans, but also the sordid history of the Queen family. With that in mind, let’s dive into Green Arrow #28!
Green Arrow and Shado return to the island where the former was marooned and underwent several hellish years which turned him into the hero he is today. Revelations from the past abound, as Oliver’s understanding of the world is distorted in short order. Meanwhile, the Outsiders move to slaughter those clans that oppose them, including Green Arrow’s allies Magus, Butcher, and Katana. A power struggle is brewing in Prague, however, and soon a new claimant to Golgotha’s throne emerges.
Green Arrow is a comic that’s floored me each month since Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino, and Marcelo Maiolo came on board a year ago. These three men have given their all to a comic that was desperately flagging, and this issue is the culmination of much of their hard work and planning. First off, the art is gorgeous, some of the best I’ve seen in modern comics. Sorrentino’s command of lines and shadow lends strength and parallels the distorted feeling of the mysteries behind the Outsiders and the Queen family. Maiolo’s colors augment this work, shifting between rich palettes of multiple hues and simpler, minimalist color schemes that emphasize key areas of the page. The art team takes a few risks, including pages when the action is shown within the sound effect balloons; gambles like this only serve to elevate the book, which pushes the bounds of comic story-telling.
Meanwhile, Lemire continues the stunning storyline he’s been building since Green Arrow #17. Lemire, like the artists, took some risks, such as throwing numerous pieces into play (the Outsiders, Komodo, Richard Dragon, Diggle, etc.) but has worked to coalesce everything into a strong, solid narrative that leaves me rushing to turn each new page. There an amazing amount of mythology and subtlety built into this issue, which is amazing for a 20 page comic. Lemire’s writing is nothing short of cinematic, and I can’t praise his writing enough.
Green Arrow #28 is an amazing comic and, dare I say it, a work of art. There’s beauty in both the art and writing, and any fan of visual storytelling would be remiss to not pick up this series. This issue itself isn’t a great place to join, but I highly encourage anyone and everyone to go back and read this run from the beginning (issue #17). I promise, you’ll find great enjoyment within.
-beautiful art that takes risks (which pay off) with traditional structure
-continuation of an amazing story arc
-super writing and character development
-poor jumping-on point (so go back and read the other issues!)
Brett Simon is a twenty-four year old comic enthusiast. He wonders what the totem weapon of the Fist Clan is (brass knuckles? Some dead guy’s hand? A boxing glove?)
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