Monday, December 13, 2010
Comic Review: Green Lantern / Green Arrow Volume 1
Title: Green Lantern / Green Arrow Volume 1 (DC Comics, Amazon, Wikipedia)
In the early 1970s Green Lantern and Green Arrow were paired together in a series that in many ways changed the world of comic books. Author Dennis O’Neil brought social commentary into the crime fighting and helped to mold the character of Green Arrow into the wise-talking, working class crusading, liberal that we know and love today. This graphic novel chronicles the adventures of Hal Jordan and Oliver Queen as they drive cross country (at times with one of the Guardians of the Universe in tow) looking for the truth about America. Each issue is a stand-alone story but they follow an overall arc that shows the growth of Green Lantern from someone who never questions authority to someone who looks for justice, whether those in authority agree with him or not. Not only is GA defined in this series, but the seeds of the character that GL would later become are panted in this series. And while these specific stories are most likely no longer canon, the cross country road trip is still a major part of the GL and GA mythos.
While these aren’t the best comic stories that I have ever read, they are intriguing for what they accomplished in moving the medium forward. And while much of the commentary comes from 1960s America, many of these issues are still going on today, making their tone that much more stark than it must have been 40 years ago.