Hello again, people. It’s D.C. here, back to throwdown on a DC book. Let’s see if I can make some sense out of Green Arrow #2, Erasure:
For those who don’t know, Green Arrow is Oliver Queen, Seattle-based businessman, philanthropist, leftist opinionated pig, and modern Robin Hood. Prior to the New 52 world, Green Arrow had a turbulent life come to a head (he did murder a villain, after all), but he was still the same enduring hero. In DC’s Rebirth era, I wonder what he is. That’s up to writer Benjamin Percy and artist Otto Schmidt to convey.
Confession: I’ve never been a fan of Green Arrow. I always thought of Ollie Queen as one of those long-lasting heroes that is never quite as interesting when solo, in spite of what I know of his character history. Still, I decided to give Oliver Queen’s book a chance to change my opinions and biases.
One of the things that bugged me more about Rebirth’s version was the return of Black Canary and Ollie’s relationship. To me, it was a dead horse beaten. And as for a return? The last turbulent relationship they had was ended by Dinah Lance, albeit pre-Flashpoint. Why tread those waters again? What exactly would benefit the characters in a way that hasn’t been done before, short of them having children? I don’t get a damn about their old romantic team-ups.
Then again, what Rebirth relaunch isn’t rehashing some old stuff? Ugh.
But again, I gave the series a shot. I certainly thought issue #1 was a good setup for the series, especially with Shado’s return, Emiko’s continued presence, and the emergence of a new (?) enemy faction. The cliffhanger at the end of issue #1 made me a little excited to see what #2 held.
Until I read it, that is.
Simply put, I felt everything in issue #2 was just forced. The entire ordeal of Ollie’s near-death experience, loss of capital, destruction of his home, and the seeming betrayal by his sister Emiko has no depth. It just seems like everything just…was. It’s like Benjamin Percy told me, “Here you go, look at this moment. Now look at this moment!” Where is the emotional impact in the moments? Where the feeling, period? Why rush it? These are moments that should push anyone to the brink of mental and physical collapse. None of this is shown with any sort of authenticity.
As for Otto Schmidt’s art…It’s very smooth and simple, yet not well-detailed. There’s not much in the way of landscape design, or much else, in my opinion. I’m new to Schmidt’s art. To me, it works well for other books, and it has a feel reminiscent of the Hanna-Barbara era. Schmidt can capture emotional expressions well, but it doesn’t come across well when Percy’s writing is added.
I don’t particularly care for this art here–I feel the overly-simplistic art gives the overall series, which already has lower-tier writing, a completely lower-tier quality. With Schmidt’s incongruous style, I’m left wondering just what feel the Green Arrow series is supposed to have.
While Green Arrow #1 was fairly promising, issue #2 fell short in every way. As a fairly new reader, I was left unsatisfied by Benjamin Percy’s rushed and ineffective writing. It lacked any depth and feeling, and came off as just a script that was pumped out to meet a deadline. Coupled with goes for Otto Schmidt’s art; the outcome doesn’t give a good fit to me when I’m reading about a superhero. This result was what I feared most when DC decided to have twice-monthly published titles. This will be a problem soon enough.
I really hope the creative team shapes up and brings the depth this series, or any series, deserves.