This Green Arrow is part Green Arrow Industries, part Smallville (thanks to corporate synergy), part Iron Man, and mostly awesome.


Green Arrow #1
Writer: J.T. Krul
Penciller: Dan Jurgens
Inker: George Perez
Colorist: David Baron
Letters: Rob Leigh
Cover: Dave Wilkins
Asst. Editor: Sean Mackiewicz
Editor: Pat McCallum
Previously in Green Arrow Classically Green Arrow has been Oliver Queen, billionaire industrialist behind Queen Industries, who suffered a tragedy in which he was stranded on an island and forced to become a hunter and live off the land. Whether the latter part of the origin is still in continuity or not remains to be seen, but our Oliver still knows how to run a business!

QUEEN INDUSTRIES: THE APPLE OF THE DCnU

Right from the get-go we see that Ollie is still in charge of his Queen Industries, whereas in the DC regular he had been forced out in a corporate takeover long ago. Specifically, Ollie is running his own division, Q-Core, makers of the Q-Phone and Q-Pad, which obviously aren’t related to any existing product in the real world. In an interestingly done scene, we see that Ollie is participating in a teleconference with the Queen Industries board while simultaneously stalking some YouTube celebrity villains in Paris as Green Arrow. We see he now has his own personal Oracle, Naomi, as well as a lot of technologically advanced trick arrows (unfortunately no boxing glove so far), designed by another Q-Core employee. We get some fighting, a good bit of talking, and some character development that sparks my curiosity; Ollie mentions that he can’t sit on the sideline anymore because “The last time [he] did, [he] watched people die. People [he] could have saved.” I don’t know if that means that a modified version of Cry for Justice is still in effect (which would explain why he’s in Seattle and not Star City), or if it’s referring to the story of a parents’ death while in Africa that I believe J.T. Krul originated in his last Green Arrow run, but it will be interesting to see how the DCnU continuity unfolds.

 

This take on Green Arrow really reminds me of a re-imagining of Iron Man where instead of building a power suit, Tony Stark picked up a bow and made Pepper Potts sit in front of a computer to be Oracle for him. It’s not clear how much of his tech he makes and how much is made for him (he does have a pacifist engineer he has hired to make weapons for him), but I’m hoping we still have the Oliver Queen who can design his own trick arrows when needed. Speaking of which, I’m quite glad that we have trick arrows again. While I can dig the whole grim and gritty Mike Grell shoot everything with broadheads Green Arrow on occasion, J.T. Krul couldn’t really write him that well. This Green Arrow seems more reminiscent of Judd Winick’s run on the character in its tone, if not much else. I know Winick’s comic writing career had its ups and downs, but in recent years he has really found his voice and written good comics; I’m hoping that J.T. Krul may be finding his voice as well and settling into being a solid comic book writer. This issue seems to be a step in the right direction. The villains for this arc don’t seem particularly inspired (they’re like Spider-Man’s rogue Screwball; they film themselves committing crimes and upload them to YouTube for fame), and at the end of the issue we see a larger team of them which seems to include the Juggernaut, the not-so-Cowardly Lion, and Wonder Woman’s costume from before the relaunch.

 

Green Arrow’s redesign has the potential to grow on me. I actually really like the Smallville-inspired costume, but am still irked that they got rid of the goatee. I absolutely DESPISE the mutton chops on the cover, but thankfully the interior art is chop-less. There’s some shadowing around the goatee region, so I am hopeful they could bring that back, but otherwise the art in this issue is fine. Dan Jurgens is a great artist, and no one is going to malign George Perez’s inking.

BOTTOM LINE: A GREAT START

All in all, I think this could be a great start for Green Arrow. I didn’t expect to like this issue (J.T. Krul has burned me one too many times with Green Arrow), but he may have finally found a version of Ollie that he can write. I’m on board for the foreseeable future, or until Green Arrow grows mutton chops for real, at which point I am hitting the eject button. 3.5 out of 5 stars for Green Arrow #1, and a cautious optimism for the future.

Rating: ★★★½☆

The Author

Jimmy

Jimmy

Once upon a time, there was a boy. This boy grew up reading classic literature--Moby Dick, The Time Machine, Robinson Crusoe. At age six, his favorite novel was 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. He devoted his time and efforts into being an incredible nerd, mastering classical literature and scientific history for his school's trivia team. Then he got to college, and started reading comic books. It's been all downhill from there.
Jimmy's favorite writers include Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis, Gail Simone, Grant Morrison, Chuck Dixon, Mark Waid and Bryan Q. Miller. His favorite artists are Kevin Maguire, Amanda Conner and Alex Ross, and his least favorite grammatical convention is the Oxford Comma. His most frequent typographical gaffe is Randomly Capitalizing Words.

You can follow his lunacy on Twitter at @JimmyTheDunn

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18 Comments

  1. Eric (CMonocle)
    September 8, 2011 at 1:28 pm — Reply

    The relaunch has brought some really interesting new takes in the other books and allowed the writers to strip these characters down to what makes them awesome. (Or at least that’s the plan.) In this case, it seems so stripped down that it’s not even Ollie anymore.

    I think that you could have put any schmuck in that green suit (which has a 90s yuck factor) and it wouldn’t have changed a thing in this issue. He just seemed to lack character.

    You make some good points though, and I know it’s just the first issue. Hopefully they’ll build on it. Oh, and BRING BACK THE GOATEE!!!

    • Jimmy
      September 8, 2011 at 2:26 pm — Reply

      I wouldn’t say that it isn’t Ollie anymore, it just isn’t the same Ollie. This take on the Emerald Archer has some interesting ties to his past (Queen Industries being the primary one that I think they can do a lot with) while giving him a lot of room to grow. In my opinion Green Arrow has always been on the verge of being a break-out character and getting really popular, but something always holds him back; I think part of that may even be his name–my family knows he’s one of my favorite heroes, but nearly always accidentally call him Green Lantern or Green Hornet.

      J.T. Krul’s run on Green Arrow in the vein of Mike Grell was CLEARLY not working. I’m hoping this take on the character can reinvent him in a way that is interesting. Yes, it’ll definitely be a reinvention. This isn’t the Oliver Queen from the old DCU. But I’m curious to see how his character develops (I agree he didn’t have a ton of character; he was mostly flash-bang and snark).

  2. ikdks
    September 8, 2011 at 2:48 pm — Reply

    Getting Apple, I mean Queen industries bad is definitely a good start. The teleconference thing was cool. Not only was it a good gimmick but it showed he could balance both aspects of his life, something he always had a problem with.

    It was also cool when he straight up shot that guy in the hands. He has trick arrows, but he isn’t just trick arrows. I was also sweet when he beat down that guy that had ten times his strength. Though they always seem to overestimate the impact of getting clocked with a bow.

    I was curious, with all these new players on his team, where’s Roy?

    • Jimmy
      September 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm — Reply

      Ikdks, all those bits you mentioned liking I agree 100%. The being able to multitask bit is going to be crucial; I am really hoping we get an Oliver Queen who can stay a successful businessman. And going with the regular sharp-tipped arrows was a beautiful moment that said to me “We are taking all the best parts of trick-arrow Ollie and regular hunter Ollie’s arsenal and mixing them”

      Roy is in Jason Todd’s group with Starfire in the “Red Hood and the Gingers” title. Personally I want a revival of the Mia Dearden character. Or another Speedy of some sort. I also want a renewal of Ollie’s romance with Dinah, though I don’t know if we will be seeing that one.

      • ikdks
        September 9, 2011 at 9:30 am — Reply

        I was having a little comment argument with someone on another web site about Batgirl and where that title fits in on the timeline and I have a similar question here.

        Jl is “five years ago”. In Detective #1 the cops are shooting at Batman, who operated undetected for years. In B&R Robin is Damian Wayne, Dick is Nightwing, Jason is reborn. So if Barbra is right out of college, that title must be somewhere in the “past”, I guess. So maybe Red Hood is in the future relative to Green Arrow and Oliver hasn’t recruited Roy yet.

        But I don’t really know.

        • Jimmy
          September 13, 2011 at 5:12 pm — Reply

          I guess that *may* be feasible, but I think DC has stated that all titles other than JLA and Action are in the present day. Their timelines have gotten a bit mushed up in the relaunch; I guess figuring out how things fit in is going to be part of the “fun” of reading the comics. Personally I’d just prefer if they published a 50 page “Roadmap of the DC Universe” with an explanation of timelines and what’s canon now, and charge like $10 for it. I’d buy it.

  3. TaZ
    September 8, 2011 at 4:49 pm — Reply

    I like it so far and I think it’s good to go back to the “clean shaven” GA from the Golden and Silver Age at least for awhile. A blonde goatee would kinda be a giveaway on the secret identity thing since “this” GA seems to have one where as everyone and their brother in the “old” DCU knew Oliver Queen was Green Arrow.

    Qphone. Lord, there’s so many jokes I could make on that…

  4. Richard
    September 8, 2011 at 8:24 pm — Reply

    This was an okay issue, but I was completely unimpressed with the weak-sauce Eurotrash supervillains that we’re introduced to in this issue. If that’s what we’ve got to look forward to for costume design in the DCnU, I’ll be a sad panda.

  5. brenton8090
    September 10, 2011 at 9:31 pm — Reply

    Villains were a little weak, but it was a fun issue. Don’t see this going anywhere terribly interesting, but I’m excited to see this version of GA pop up in other books. Maybe his stubble indicates that in the more modern timeline he has the goatee. Maybe he’s also married to BC. This whole multiple timeline does have it’s advantages: you can have your wedding cake, and eat it too. But so far, this book is on issue-by-issue probation.

    • Jimmy
      September 11, 2011 at 3:52 pm — Reply

      I’m pretty sure this book is in the modern timeline

    • Damascus
      September 14, 2011 at 12:29 am — Reply

      I think the villains were supposed to be weak in this outing. He literally has the upperhand the entire time, they barely lay a finger on him. There’s probably a good reason coming around the corner for why he didn’t have some big villain to fight. The odd part was whether Ollie was in Paris for business and decided to fight some crime also, or did he really fly all the way there just to capture a couple low rent villains? That would make the villains seem extra weak sauce, unless it was happenstance that he ran into them, but I doubt it. But hey, maybe it was just enough for him to fly all the way there to ram it down their throats how very sad and pathetic they are that they have all this power and can only terrorize innocent people who are weaker than them.

  6. KevinpBreen
    September 13, 2011 at 1:02 am — Reply

    OK, first, I’m a dinosaur who started reading GA when he was a backup in ADVENTURE COMICS. I decided to give the DCnU a chance and come at it with a clean slate, instead of comparing it to what I knew. Gotta admit I like GA #1. Unlike a lot of the DCnU titles, it’s a clean relaunch. This Ollver Queen has NO ties to his past incarnations. The idea of an industrialist concerned about doing good as well as making profit has always intrigued me; unrealistic as it is (comics are fantasy after all). I even compared Tony Stark to Siddhartha on my blog. Queen seems more involved with his corporation than Bruce Wayne, and I hope the bits with Emerson aren’t a setup for a hostile takeover and a return to streetwise Ollie. Everything Ollie says about what he is doing and why the villains, er, punks, er, losers are bad reflects my own beliefs of what heroes should be like, without becoming the Dudley Do-Rights the 50s/60s heroes could be (which I still enjoy, but is not going to attract new readers). Best example is his line to Jax, “I wanted someone designing my weapons who didn’t find enjoyment in discovering new ways to hurt people.” Unfortunately that describes too many of today’s superheroes. In a line that includes savage Hawkman, warrior Wonder Woman, Blackwater Blackhawks and bloodyhanded Red Lanterns, GREEN ARROW strikes just the right balance between the Boy Scouts of the Silver Age and the heroes of today.

    • Jimmy
      September 13, 2011 at 5:14 pm — Reply

      Amen to that. I’ve gotten more excited about Jax’s character the more I’ve thought about this issue; it’s probably the best idea Krul has come up with so far, and very fitting for a proper hero.

  7. CraigSPB
    September 26, 2011 at 11:46 am — Reply

    I enjoyed reading this issue and I’m a huge fan of GA but lost as to where we are in the timeline
    Is this a younger Ollie? Is Connor Hawke still his son?

    • September 26, 2011 at 2:18 pm — Reply

      We are in the timeline of the new modern DC Universe, which is set approximately 5 years after the popularization of the term “superhero”; I vaguely recall some reference to Connor in relation to JLI, but am not sure on that.

      • CraigSPB
        October 4, 2011 at 2:01 pm — Reply

        still confused though. do you mean that kevin smith and judd winnicks run on GA are ignored and they’re kind of like starting again?

        • KevinpBreen
          October 6, 2011 at 1:16 am — Reply

          It means GA has been reset to before Ollie lost his corporation and grew a beard way back in 1969 – if not earlier

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