DC Comics
Review: Green Arrow #34
By Philip Schweier
December 29, 2017 - 15:35

DC Comics
Writer(s): Benjamin Percy
Artist(s): Stephen Byrne
Letterer(s): Deron Bennett
Cover Artist(s): Jamal Campbell; Mike Grell

I’ve been away from Green Arrow for several issues, but if #34 is any indication, I haven’t missed anything critical. One of the things I appreciate about the character is that he’s one of the few super-heroes in the DCU that isn’t particularly super. He has no powers, naturally or technologically endowed. Like Batman and Nightwing, all he can rely on is his basic human abilities.

But unlike the Dynamic Duo, he is seriously flawed, often confused. Confidence and commitment wax and wane as much as his skill with a bow remains true. So when Moira Queen returns from… wherever, he’s shaken. Uncertain whether this woman who claims to be his mother genuinely has benign interests, it takes him a while accept her agenda, albeit reluctantly. Meanwhile, other matters come to light; Diggle’s tenuous debt to Merlyn, and the Clock King’s plot against Star City.

I said before I appreciated Benjamin Percy’s work on Green Arrow more than I anticipated, and I look forward to catching up. However, in this issue, there’s something that’s just a little bit too on the nose for my taste. In a flashback sequence, Ollie’s dad is reading Robin Hood to him, and Moira later speaks of his ancestor Robin Queen. I mean, really?

Stephen Byrne’s artwork is terrific. He seems to have studied previous Green Arrow artists and taken the best elements from them to create his own blend of visuals. No color credit is given for this issue, so I assume handled that as well, and like most artist/colorists, it works beautifully.

My other complaint is the cover by Jamal Campbell. It depicts Green Arrow under the bow of Merlyn, and the caption “At the Mercy of Merlyn.” But no such scene takes place in this issue; not even close. One might think with the artists available to DC, one of them might be able to knock out a generic pin-up style cover, instead of publishing this mistake.

Rating: 7/10

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