04 May 2010

Faster than a DC Bullet: Project Star City, Part XXI: Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters

Comic trade paperback, n. pag.
Published 1989 (contents: 1987)

Borrowed from the library
Read April 2010
Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters

Writer / Artist: Mike Grell
Assistant: Lurene Haines
Color Artist: Julia Lacquement
Letterer: Ken Bruzenak

After years of feeling disaffected, Oliver Queen and Dinah Lance move to Seattle to start a new life... only to immediately be drawn into some mysterious killings. Of course. The plot here is convoluted, but that's not really the point of The Longbow Hunters, which is Green Arrow's emotional journey, as he transforms into a dark, urban hunter to fight this dark, modern world (it was the 1980s, after all). The worst of it is that Black Canary is kidnapped by a gang of thugs in the middle of an investigation and seemingly molested. It could easily be a case of women-in-refrigerators (and it very well might be), but as Meltzer does in Identity Crisis, Grell handles it so that it works-- it feels real and not gratuitous. I think it's a matter of Grell's fantastic artwork for the story, which completely matches his writing in tone, aided by some great coloring. This is a much less fun Green Arrow than the one of the early years, or of Kevin Smith's run, but it works fantastically nonetheless. Grell wrote another eighty issues of Green Arrow after this, and it's a dang-old shame that none of them have been collected.

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