Scott, Clark and Parsons conclude Green Arrow’s battle with the Parasite in the latest issue. It sure doesn’t go where I was expecting it to, but I found the story far more interesting than it could have been.
But first and foremost, I need to talk about the art. I am not an artist, so I have little of intelligence to say about it, but wow. This issue looks great. From the page layouts to the way the characters fill the panels, the expressions on the human characters and the terrifying bubble gum blob of the Parasite, everything in this issue is superbly rendered.
And the story ain’t nothing to spit at, either.
While the first half of the tale was a regatta of villains and their various powers, the concluding half takes a different tack completely. The Parasite is shown to be as much a victim of his energy draining abilities as anyone who he consumes. The conditions required to keep him in containment have to be horrifyingly bleak and brutal.
The story looks like it will take another easy way out, showing the warden to be sadistic and cruel, but opts not to go there, either.
Instead, we wind up with a nuanced tale, in which there are no easy answers, and no clean way to place blame.
Green Arrow, as a character, remains largely defined by the work Denny O’Neil did on him and Green Lantern back in the early 70s, a counter culture rebel. To write stories in our current era that raise similar concepts of injustice within our society is not always easy. Making them entertaining romps is almost impossible.
This issue manages to do both, to provide a fully entertaining comic book adventure, while at the same time dealing with some larger ideas, and not giving simple solutions to them.