06 June 2010

Faster than a DC Bullet: Project Star City, Part XXIII: Green Lantern: Emerald Allies

This is it! With Green Lantern: Emerald Allies, I have officially and finally read every single trade paperback to feature Green Arrow, a voyage I began exactly a year ago in May 2009, taking me through twenty Green Arrow comics, plus a few related stories.

Comic trade paperback, 206 pages
Published 2000 (contents: 1996-97)

Borrowed from the library
Read May 2010
Green Lantern: Emerald Allies

Writers: Chuck Dixon, Ron Marz
Pencillers: Rodolfo Damaggio, Dougie Braithwaite, Paul Pelletier, Darryl Banks, Will Rosado
Inkers: Robert Campanella, Robin Riggs, Romeo Tanghal, Terry Austin
Colorists: Lee Loughridge, Pam Rambo, Rob Schwager
Letterers: John Costanza, Albert De Guzman, Chris Elioupoulos

The only part of Connor Hawke's time in the title role of volume 2 of Green Arrow is collected in this volume, labeled as part of the Green Lantern series despite the fact that five of its eight issues were originally Green Arrow releases. They all feature team-ups between Connor and Kyle Rayner, the then-Green Lantern of Earth, both young men unexpectedly thrust into a long-running superhero mantle. The material that works with this is probably the best stuff here.

The first story is "Bad Blood," a one-issue first meeting for the two heroes that is decent, but not spectacular. The largest section of the book is "Hard-Traveling Heroes: The Next Generation," which apes the GL/GA team-ups of old by having the two of them travel the United States looking for Kyle's father. Denny O'Neill's early team-ups were known for their over-earnest social commentary, and there's some of that here, but it fits oddly. The story is okay, but let down by a villain plan that doesn't make a whole lot of sense. The best story in the book is the last one, "Hate Crimes," which sees New York City pulled apart by racial rhetoric from both white and black commentators, and gets some nice material in as a result, as well as showing us both heroes in their element.

I liked this brief chance to get to know both Connor and Kyle; it some ways it's a shame that both had to be replaced in their roles by the returns of their predecessors. It's not long after this story that Oliver Queen is resurrected, bringing us to Quiver, back where I began all that time ago.

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