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'Green Arrow' #5 review

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‘Green Arrow’ #5 review

A book that not only gives a damn about continuity, this is a book that rewards YOU for giving a damn.

We’re back again with another issue of Green Arrow by Joshua Williamson and Sean Izaakse! This run really has been knocking it out of the park and this issue continues that hot streak by throwing out a massively entertaining and fun issue packed with more nerd stuff for guys like me, a nerd who likes this stuff. Let’s get right to it.

Jumping right in, the plot of the issue continues the intrigue and mystery the book’s been exploring this whole time, delivering yet another swerve just when I thought all the pieces were already on the table. The twist reveals just keep coming on this one, and I can say that this one is just as clever as all the rest thus far. One thing Williamson does here that I found immensely clever and satisfying was the way he used the reader’s own nerdy nitpick knowledge against them. I would know, it actually WORKED on me while reading. Having Future Ollie (or… fake future Ollie, I guess) let little bits of false information slip out, information that as a fan, I rightfully would be able to call out as not being correct, and then have OUR Ollie also pick up on that inconsistency and use it as a clue was just… genius. Pure, actual genius. I fell for it hook, line, and sinker too – I raised my eyebrow and said to myself, “huh, is that a retcon? That’s not what happened.” only to realize a page later my nerdy fan expectations were used against me for the sake of the story. I feel duped in the best possible way.

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Green Arrow #5

DC Comics

The rest of the issue’s plot is mostly just fun character stuff like that. Ollie being his best self, Conner taking charge in rescuing his Father, the tense but emotional conversation between Jade, Roy and Dinah, all great stuff that continues to prove why Williamson was the perfect guy for the job.

Izaakse’s art continues to hit it hard, with the usual dynamic and detailed pages I’ve come to expect from him on this book. I continue to have next to no nitpicks or anything to critique with his work – guy’s just a good, solid artist and he’s excelling very nicely at the job. Though, no disrespect at all to Izaakse and I hope his time on the book isn’t over, but I have to say that having not looked closely at the cover’s credits going into this… the sudden return of Green Arrow legend Phil Hester to the interiors at the very end was a massive treat of a surprise for me. Hester’s art is one of my favorites in all of comics, having a distinctly cartoony style that I always found to be an acquired taste for most people… but boy, when you acquire that taste. The man is practically THE Green Arrow artist, and is undoubtedly one of the prolific and popular people to ever work on the character. His art here is like the peanut butter finally reuniting with the jelly after years away; just insane and really awesome to see.

DC Preview: Green Arrow #5

DC Comics

As usual, this book manages to – hell, EXCELS at hitting every note just right. Williamson has brought that same deep level of care, respect, and core understanding of the characters and their world to this book that characterized everything I loved about his work on the Flash. When given the reins to shape a corner of the DCU, Williamson always manages to tread fun new ground while still holding what came before close to heart and never letting go. The fact this book managed to play with my expectations and trick me into thinking a lazy retcon just occurred only to completely play that expectation against me… man, that’s just so clever. The fact that I’ve been going on this long about how good the issue is and I haven’t even brought up the absolute TREAT of an ending should speak volumes on how great it is.

It’s nice to see that in a DC landscape where continuity can often be played very fast and loose, with inconsistencies in events and characterization more likely to be met with a half-hearted shrug and an apathetic disinterest, we still get books like this, who not only give a damn, they reward you for giving a damn.

That’s the respect for your readers, respect for your fans, respect for your characters, that makes for not just good comics, but GREAT comics.

'Green Arrow' #5 review
‘Green Arrow’ #5 review
Green Arrow #5
Another knockout entry in Williamson and Izaakse's modern classic starring the Emerald Archer.
Reader Rating1 Votes
9
That part about the fake out retcon that blew my god damn mind
The art by Izaakse being fantastic
The return of Phil Hester
The solid character writing continued
9.5
Great
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