Review Brew: Green Arrow #44
Writer: Ben Percy
Artists: Patrick Zircher & Fabrizio Fiorentino
Colorist: Gabriel A. Eltaeb
With the hyping of the upcoming Season Four of Arrow, I thought it would be a good idea to check out the Green Arrow comic from this week to go with the theme. After being a huge fan of the Lemire run, I jumped off for a bit but still remain a huge fan of the character. This issue however, didn’t come with a huge amount of expectations, as I have no idea what the character is up to in this continuity.
I only know Ben Percy from the two issue arc he did on Detective Comics earlier this year, and the biggest take away from that was the amazing John Paul Leon art. That being said, I remember him being a solid writer, and have since learned that he is a fairly well known novelist. Reading this issue definitely felt like it came from someone who has a prose background. In this issue we delve into the history of Oliver’s (Green Arrow) dog companion, as we discover he descends from a wolf who more or less terrorized a town with his pack. While that was definitely an interesting story, the real takeaway from the plot came in introduction of The Bone Hunters. We first see them in the dog backstory, and they seem to be a group kind of like The Hand with skull masks. When we get back to present day, Oliver is ambushed by the Hunters, and ends up being saved by a mysterious women calling herself Tarantula. That last crucial bit of story comes in the last few pages, and if anything I would’ve loved to have seen a little more of that. From the little bit of characterization we get of Oliver, Percy appears to have the character down, which is looking good for future issues, I just was left hoping for a little more. One thing about Percy’s writing that really struck me was the near loftiness of his prose, really displaying his novel writing skills. While I could hear an argument for it being a little too much description, i.e. describing what’s on the panel, I thought it didn’t get too over the top, and it added an interesting bit of text. As a fan of the Mike Grell and Jeff Lemire Green Arrow books, this story looks to be in that vain, so I will definitely be back. The only problem I see is getting a new reader to Green Arrow to grab on.
In terms of Patrick Zircher, I am familiar with his work, most prominently on Brubaker’s Captain America, and I am a big fan. Fabrizio Fiorentino, however, I’ve never seen before, and what I got from this issue from both of them is that it was almost hard for me to tell where one of them did a page and where the other did. I would guess that Fiorentino did the backstory art, and Zircher did the present day stuff which bookended the issue. That being said, I thought the Zircher art was a little stronger, as the inking and backgrounds had a little more definition in them. That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed the other pages, where we see some kick ass rendering of wolves and strong panel to panel storytelling. In fact, the overall issue had strong panel to panel work, and I felt the team found a good balance of heavy character rendering and shading to clear action storytelling. The two are a strong fit for a gritty story that we appear to be getting here, and I look forward to their work in future issues.
While I was personally grabbed by the character, I can understand how someone not as enamored with Green Arrow would feel kind of slighted with this issue. I’m hoping that the next issue gives us some more meat in the overall plot, and potentially moving this issue up to a really fun filler issue.
3.5 Huskys out of 5