I hate not finishing what I start. I have a serious problem when it comes to letting things go when I’m not enjoying it, whether it’s a book, TV series, or comics. It’s partly a mentality of never quitting, and it’s partly a collector’s mentality. Or really a bit of OCD, because the real reason is that I hate having unfinished collections.
This is where I am with Green Arrow of DC Universe Rebirth. I subscribed to the series because I have a soft spot for Green Arrow of old and Black Canary. If you listened to our first podcast, you heard me admit that I jumped into Green Arrow because I heard they were getting Oliver and Dinah back together. I love them as a couple as much as I love Rogue and Gambit and Nightwing and Starfire. While they are back together, sort of, I’m not a huge fan of Oliver’s current character. Oliver used to be a witty smartass. Now he’s kind of boring, pretentious, and condescending.
The comic has not found any additional favor with me now that it’s been heavily focused on his half-sister, Emiko. She betrayed Oliver to turn him over to the Oyabun Yakuza, and then in turn betrayed the Yakuza. Her mother, who owes a life debt to the Yakuza, hauls Emiko away from the failed mission to Tokyo, where she will beg the Yakuza to spare her daughter’s life. But seriously, this girl is an angsty teenager; she’s not going to sit and do what she’s told. Instead, she does what any other teenager would have done: join the Tokyo underground fighting ring to get Oyabun’s attention.
She doesn’t want to beg for her life. She doesn’t want to beg for her mother’s life. She wants to free her mother from her life debt passed down from her own father, and she doesn’t care if it means losing her own life. So noble. So dramatic.
It was a pretty epic battle, though, I’ll give Emiko that.
But at the end, Shado, her mother, sends her back to Oliver Queen. I understand from a comic book standpoint, this is a must to keep Oliver’s life a bit interesting. But from a plot standpoint, it doesn’t make much sense. Then again, in the world of DC Comics, what really does?
I haven’t canceled my subscription yet, but I’m getting sorely tempted. Next issue should be less Emiko, hopefully more Black Canary. Or at the very least, less Emiko.
What’s sad is that the writing is great, and the art is stunning, but it’s the stories that I can’t get behind. The worst part is that I’m not entirely sure what I want. Do I want Ollie charging after super villains like usual? Do I want him tackling some of our social issues? Do I want him tackling run of the mill criminals in Seattle? Do I want him to go back to Star City? Perhaps these are the same struggles the GA team has as well with Ollie’s story in DC Universe Rebirth. How do you make a character fit in this world full of superheroes when he has no superpowers, and not make him another Batman?
And that, right there, is why I haven’t canceled my subscription just yet.
Title: Green Arrow #7
Author: Benjamin Percy
Artist: Stephen Byrne
Publisher: DC Comics
Publish Date: 09/21/2016
Acquired via Purchase