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Green Arrow #23 Review

Ollie Queen’s entire life has been turned upside down and on top of that Seattle may be in more danger than ever. If you found out your parents may be connected to the evil organization that’s made your last year of life a living hell how would you respond? We find out how Ollie responds this week and it involves lots of punching.

Green Arrow #23
Writer: Benjamin Percy
Artist: Juan Ferreyra
Publisher: DC Comics

So what’s it about? The official summary reads:

“THE RISE OF STAR CITY” part three! As Green Arrow discovers the Ninth’s Circle’s true plan for Seattle, so too does Oliver Queen learn the truth about his family’s ancient role in the city’s coming destruction. Shocking secrets are laid bare as the biggest GREEN ARROW story ever drives toward its epic conclusion.

Why does this book matter?

Juan Ferreyra is an artist to watch. Hell, he made it into our POP monthly column and that’s because his painted pages are not only gorgeous, but dynamic. His art and color has added a layer of realism and beauty that’s hard to deny. Benjamin Percy meanwhile, has been writing this character long enough that we know the story we’re getting is a long game approach that’s well thought out. So far it’s delivering high stakes and big reveals making Ollie’s life more complicated than ever.

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

She’s been a major part of this series being good since her inclusion.

This issue juggles multiple characters quite well with not a lick of confusion or lack of dramatic build up from the cutting between them. While Ollie battles his revelations of his family Black Canary is looking out for him and Emi is taking on the enemy directly. It’s a balance of emotional storytelling, action, and exposition building and splitting it like Percy does keeps the pace up and the story rolling. On top of this, Henry Fyff gets a key role as Broderick continues to attack Ollie indirectly by turning even his friends against him. As these threads build on each other the book leads to a fight in the rain and a most shocking cliffhanger. Seriously, if you know of or live in Seattle you’ll gasp!

The art by Ferreyra is exceptional and his work here is possibly his best yet. There’s a lot going on in this issue visually, from Black Canary exploring a heavenly lit library to a burning forest being doused in heavy rain; Ferreyra crafts the latter scene, with orange-red embers and burned wood in particularly striking form. Later, when Henry encounters Broderick, Ferreyra uses a cool blur effect to enhance the disorientating scene, but also show off a technological wonder from Queen Industries. This leads to a cool double page layout with a fantastic panel showcasing the many toys (mostly war machines it looks like) of Queen industries. Later, when Ollie takes on some enemies in the forest there’s excellent panels showing off Ollie’s agility that are impressive. There’s also a wicked full page spread of Ollie swinging away at a flamethrowing toting baddy. Near the end of the issue there’s a fantastic double page layout harboring 25 panels cutting between Ollie (cast in green) and Broderick (cast in red) that slow the story down so that when the full page cliffhanger drops you’ll gasp. Great stuff all around.

The disturbing fairy tales are the good fairy tales!

It can’t be perfect can it?

Very minor gripe here, but the ending has every character react to the big cliffhanger and yet how could they all see the same thing? Given all their varied locations I’m at a loss as to how they all see or hear the event at the same time.

Is It Good?

Green Arrow is a showstopper series for too many reasons to count. Gorgeously drawn with high stakes and great pacing — don’t miss this issue!

Green Arrow #23
Is It Good?
Gorgeous, high stakes, tons of character work, great pace...this is a perfect comic.
What a good looking book. Flip through this even if you aren't reading it
Good balance between characters to progress the plot and insert action
Major cliffhanger!
The cliffhanger page made me scratch my head as far as how all these characters are seeing the same thing

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