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‘Green Arrow #46’ (review)

Written by Julie Benson & Shawna Benson
Illustrated by German Peralta
Published by DC Comics

 

The Benson Sisters are on a roll with the latest in Green Arrow #46 from DC Comics.

Ollie and Diana are on the trail of Citizen and revealing his true identity. All the while, Oliver needs to exonerate himself through evidence that he himself was not guilty of murder.

Green Arrow is just plain good now, with the Bensons building up to what could be referred to as a legendary run on the character.

It helps or hinders Green Arrow that he can be seen on TV every week with Arrow headed into its seventh season and Arrowverse leading the way for DC TV as a multimedia concept. Marvel’s approach is different, but could learn a lot from these Berlanti shows.

Using some television experience from The 100, these writers have built up not only a fun superhero adventure with explosions and fist fights, but also a gumshoe detective story referencing Diana as ‘Lady Columbo’.

Flash in New 52 and to some extent in this recent Rebirth run kept me engaged with the procedural stuff but has been more Speed Force than Dragnet of late. I’m getting that here in Green Arrow and also a bit of influence from Kevin Smith’s run on the character, at least in the dialogue department.

The classic Black Canary / Green Arrow dynamic is here, in a Bronze Age way. The villain Citizen is part V from V for Vendetta/Anonymous and plays the roll of an extreme vigilante that uses live streaming, social media and fear to get his message out to ginned up followers that are starting to push his agenda.

Whenever I see news portrayed in comics, I think of the scenes in The Dark Knight Returns, and I reference those classic panels a lot in my reviews. It wasn’t hard for me as a kid to imagine screens everywhere and news and images in the future. Now we exist with a screen in our hands more powerful than what was imagined by Miller or Ellis in Transmetropolitan. These images of Citizen on Periscope or Facebook Live to 19,536 viewers are framed exactly like those news vids from a 1980s futurist.

A final confrontation between Green Arrow and Citizen ends with property damage and Citizen leaving Ollie to die. After he escapes, at a press conference, Oliver turns himself over to police custody. This is where I, though not disparagingly, offer a similarity to Arrow on CW. Oliver is always taking a press conference with the cops and turning himself in. The most notable difference here is that Ollie is drawn with his best Neal Adams’ signature goatee!

DC credits list someone else on duties in places, but German Peralta makes the page come alive with great acting and impressive backgrounds and scenery that are truly cinematic. I’ll keep an eye out for their work. John Kalisz colored the book and Deron Bennett on letters. It’s important creators are recognized, as this is a particularly solid run, and I understand they may be switching artists to keep up with shipping.

Another landmark issue Green Arrow #50 is just around the corner and I can’t wait.

 

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