Monday, February 11, 2013

WGTB Reviews Green Arrow #17

The creative team of Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino began their run on DC's Green Arrow this week and it certainly got off the ground with a bang. Now, I had been looking forward to this team's work since I first heard about the change in late autumn. Lemire is a writer who I've been enjoying to increasing levels over the past few years and recently happened upon his graphic novel The Nobody, finding it a quirky and odd science-fiction story that could've happened (okay, not really) in any of the small Southern Ontario communities in which I spend my youth. Lemire is also responsible for one of the sleeper hits of the New 52 and Animal Man was another reason to get me optimistic about Green Arrow #17. 
DC's Green Arrow #17 (April 2013) Written by Jeff Lemire, art and colours by Andrew Sorrentino, letters by Rob Leigh, edited by Joey Cavalieri & Kate Stewart

(Warning: Some Spoilers Below)
This is also the first Green Arrow book I’ve bought since I left the title sometime in 2011. The previous teams were okay, but just didn’t seem to mesh with what I wanted from the comic. I understood the Q-Core/high-tech Seattle-based Oliver Queen and thought it was a great modern spin on things, but I just found those books devoid (in both art and writing) of the gritty enmity that has long defined the Green Arrow and made him such an innovative character in the Bronze and early Modern ages. 

Sorrentino's menacing art is a stand-out...

...feature of Green Arrow #17 (April 2013)
So did I like #17 and did Lemire and Sorrentino live up to the hype? The short answer to this question is a resounding "Yes". It begins with a quick recap of the series which was of marginal value, but then quickly transitions into a conflict between Oli and his corporate boss, who is subsequently murdered by a flying arrow. The rest of the comic tells the tale of the Green Arrow looking for the culprit, until he comes face to face with him only to learn that every step along the way he has been two steps behind. Just when the book is about to end, Oli is saved, but it's very clear the arc is only in its early stages. 


Lemire and Sorrentino’s Green Arrow #17 is a well-crafted first effort and certainly has the booster-shot of grittiness I had been craving. The enemy, Komodo, is much better than anything I've seen from past Green Arrow efforts and without question Sorrentino's fantastic art made the book enjoyable on multiple levels. Indeed, the art (as you can see) makes a quicker impression on the reader, but overall, the Trent Reznor-esque tonal intensity to the writing tells me Lemire has brought his 'A' game and I'm already looking forward to the next issue. This is a must get for the week of February 6th and I think we can expect great things in the months ahead. 4.5/5 STARS 

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