GREEN ARROW #27 & #28

Have you ever been on a long, arduous, road trip, across the country? If so, then you might be able to sympathize with at least one of the characters featured in the following story. It was created by Benjamin Percy, Jamal Campbell, Juan Ferreyra, and published by DC Comics. It's August, 2017, and it's time for the Green Arrow double review.

TO QUOTE William Gladstone: 'Liberalism is trust of the people tempered by prudence. Conservatism is distrust of the people tempered by fear'. 

Last month, Green Arrow teamed-up with the Flash so together they could investigate a plot helmed by a group of black market financiers called the Ninth Circle. This month, however, Green Arrow is going to team-up with two other heroes, namely, Wonder Woman and Superman, simply because the Flash has to dart off to STAR Labs, Central City branch, in order to analyse a piece of evidence they've both discovered.

You see, when issue 27 begins, we are presented with a scene that depicts these two heroes breaking into an office that belongs to the Ninth Circle (situated in Washington DC). Soon enough, the Flash finds the aforementioned piece of evidence, and, yes, you guessed it, decides to rush off to analyse it further, which leaves Ollie, all alone, patiently waiting for his comrade to eventually return.  

But as we all know, GA isn't the type of hero to stand around and do nothing, especially when there's a masked hit-man on the loose, primed and ready to assassinate a local Senator who's planning to speak at a conference promoting peace! 

Along similar lines you could also say the same thing about one of this months featured guest-stars, i.e. Wonder Woman, who catches wind of this plot, fairly quickly, before confronting GA while he's battling his foe!

Initially Diana appears to distrust Oliver's motives because of his previous behavior as well as what the media have said about him in the press. But thankfully, with the use of her handy lasso of truth, this situation doesn't last for very long, as she quickly uses it on him and resolves any issues so they can then continue this fight. 

Once this skirmish is finally over and done with, Oliver notices that the masked hit-man was wearing a piece of armor manufactured by LexCorp, which to him, implies that he can only really do one thing next: Travel to Metropolis and confront the one person who's in charge of the city. No. I'm not talking about Superman. I'm talking about Lex Luthor, the head of LexCorp, who Oliver hastily approaches so he can inform him about a problem he's about to have.

Turns out that sometime ago the Ninth Circle asked Lex to join their organisation. But, for reasons of his own, he decided to turn them down, point blank, which is why they are currently trying to frame him for crimes he didn't commit.

The first crime is obviously connected with them supplying LexCorp armor to that masked hit-man Oliver met previously. Whereas the second of these crimes involves them implanting a techno-organic-virus that will emotionally force Lex's employees to attempt to commit suicide. 

Yes. That's right. I said suicide. As if someone was to jump off of a tall building and then plummet to their death. Well, that is unless Green Arrow and Lex can do something to stop this from happening, complemented with some additional help from a certain Man Of Steel! Wink-Wink! 

So there you have it, folks, issues 27 and 28 of Green Arrow summed up to the best of my ability. All in all I thought they were a great pair of issues which I personally enjoyed reading, despite the hokey villains. 

Issue 27 was the type of story that initially felt pretty flat at face value. After all, it dealt with two characters who confront their differences before confronting the situation that surrounds them (you know, the usual hero verses hero set-up). But no, it wasn't flat at all. In fact its main saving grace was largely due to Benjamin Percy being able to construct an evolving tale that was full of action, adventure, and of course, a touch of political intrigue.

The way in which he conveys the latter of these facets can easily be seen during that sequence where Oliver and Diana saved the Senator before he sermonized to the crowd nearby. Even though what he said did seem a little bit preachy at times, bordering on the shamanistic, in the same breath I couldn't help but agree with his point of view, despite the whole scenario seeming completely unnatural within the confines of a fight between Green Arrow and one of his opponents.

In retrospect I personally felt that the stand out scene was the one where Diana and Ollie had a discussion. I mean, that whole bit where she tied him up and got him to say the truth was a right blast! Plus I also liked the fact that he apologized for hitting on her while he briefly joined the League! Seriously, it made me laugh, as it came across as being completely down to earth and on point! 

Funnily enough, the same can also be said about issue 28. Although, in this instance, I enjoyed how the main plot-line wasn't immediately apparent, as it slowly crept up on us, one story beat at a time, until Lex eventually figured out what Oliver was trying to say to him and understood what he needed to do next. Superman's involvement was equally as enjoyable, and I particularly liked his introduction as it reminded me of the jovial way he was introduced at the start of the Richard Lester film, 'Superman 3'. 

The one thing about these two issues I wasn't too keen on, however, would have to be the sub-plot featuring Black Canary and Emi. As much as I can understand why Ben has included them within this story-arc (just to remind us what's been going on over in Star City), at the same time their part of the story does feel like a, surprise-surprise, sub-plot, and I'm hoping that Ben is able to tie it back into the main tale soon. 

Art-wise, and I have to congratulate the two artists who were assigned to draw these two issues: Jamal Campbell for issue 27; and Juan Ferreyra for issue 28. Overall I felt that both of these men were able to expertly layout and design each page so that the overreaching narrative was very easy to understand and follow. I also enjoyed how their manga styled musings didn't detract in terms of portraying a series of semi-relatable characters. 

Take Jamal's depiction of Wonder Woman for instance. Straightaway you know it's her despite how large she is in proportion to Green Arrow. But not large in a cartoonish way!  She's large in a statuesque way, almost as if she was a ceramic statue magically brought to life. Jamal's depiction of Ollie was also very flattering on the page, even though the way he drew the Flash did seem a little bit anorexic in comparison.

As for Juan, yeah, he did a splendid job too, plus I particularly liked his rendition of Superman: Square-jawed, square-framed, and very American action hero in the best possible sense.

Great job guys, as I can't wait to see what you'll be getting up to next month.

There were times throughout these two issues where I thought Oliver's political rhetoric was a little bit too on the nose. So much so, in fact, that occasionally I imagined him sermonizing along with the following tune. So take it away, Public Enemy, and let us all 'Fight the Power' together.

The one thing both of these issues have in common is related to how other people are starting to change their perception of Green Arrow. Almost as if he has re-branded himself like Elvis did in the 1968 comeback special

Thank you very much, comparison made.

At the start of issue 28, Lex Luthor tells Green Arrow about his favorite literary character. So, for the sake of penmanship, let's see if you can guess who this person is out of the following eight candidates? Could it be…

  • Jesus: Because of his hair.
  • Sherlock Holmes: Because of his deductive ability.
  • Peter Pan: Because he hangs around children.
  • Mrs Marple: Because she can knit.
  • Dennis the Menace: Because his dog smokes cigarettes.
  • That man out of that thing that does that thing: Because of that thing that does that thing.
  • Wolverine: Because of his claws.
  • Himself: Because he's a git. 
Nuff said.

GREEN ARROW #27 & #28 GREEN ARROW #27 & #28 Reviewed by David Andrews on August 17, 2017 Rating: 5

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