Review: ‘Green Arrow’ #18

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Last month, writer Jeff Lemire and artist Andrea Sorrentino were tasked with trying to mold Green Arrow into something worth the paper it was printed on. To say that the book has been sub-par since the New 52 re-launch is an understatement, as its been plagued with countless creative changes and was a shining example of a book that wasn’t working.

For their first issue, Lemire and Sorrentino simply swept everything that had come before under the rug and started the book with a clean slate. The first issue showed a lot of promise and gave reader’s hope that something could be done to help bail out the sinking ship that “Green Arrow” had become. Now with issue #18 we’re starting to get ease into the deep end of the run where Lemire and Sorrentino will either sink or swim on the strength of their work.

WRITTEN BY: Jeff Lemire
ART BY: Andrea Sorrentino
PUBLISHER: DC Comics
PRICE: $2.99
RELEASE: March 6th, 2013

Lemire is clearly laying groundwork to build something much bigger with this series. This issue reveals that Ollie’s father had a stint living on the island that originally held him captive before hurdling Ollie into an action packed cliffhanger ending. The issue also succeeds at establishing Komodo as a formidable foe in the Green Arrow mythos. Lemire sets a tone for the book that mirrors that of the popular television show, which is a smart move given this book’s past track record. There is enough action in this issue to satisfy those eagerly waiting for Ollie to break out into combat, but there is still a fair amount of character development to help keep things in balance.

Andrea Sorrentino’s work here is top notch and he proves yet again that he is one of the most underrated artists working in mainstream comics today. Sorrentino brings a darker look to the book, which is a refreshing change of pace from the vibrant and often splashy art the book has had in the past. His characters are expressive and he has a great sense of how a story should flow from panel to panel, which compliments Lemire’s writing quite well. One of the only drawbacks to the issue lays in the decision to highlight each of the flashback sequences with stark black and white rather than muted colors. The black and white panels draw readers eye away from the rest of the page and put too much emphasis on the flashback.

In just two issues Lemire and Sorrentino have delivered the best issues of Green Arrow since the New 52 began. Their creative chemistry is firing on all cylinders and they’ve elevated Green Arrow into one something worthy of reader’s hard earned dollars. If the quality of the book can remain this consistent throughout their run, Green Arrow has the potential to become one of the best books DC is putting out.

4/5 Skulls