The Green Lantern/Green Arrow Collection, Vol. 1

By Dennis O'Neil

Rating: 3 stars

This book feels very much of its time, in the language, the thought bubbles and some of the themes covered. While it might be easy to mock its pairing of heroes who, on the surface, have nothing in common except that they have ‘green’ in their name, the introduction goes out of its way to explain this pairing, and having read the book, it does more or less work. Green Lantern is the ultimate policeman, always following orders and having a very black and white interpretation of justice. Green Arrow, in this series at least, is a bit of an anarchist, wanting to stand up for people, without the nuances of the law. This series sets them against each other at times, but ultimately they come together for the Greater Good, whether that be dealing with slum landlords, corrupt mine owners or invasion of Native American lands.

Some of it is clumsily handled to modern eyes, particularly the Native American story, although in saying that, Native American history and culture is something that I know very little about; on this side of the Pond we don’t see much of it outside of Hollywood’s perspective. I was pleased to see that Black Canary was able to hold her own, for the most part, but the descriptions of her beauty and grace did have me shaking my head at times.

I know very little about either of these characters, not being a big comics geek, but it was a fun story, and I guess it could be considered a forerunner of what was to come, when superheroes became tarnished and complex. Green Lantern takes part of that journey here, but we also see a slightly simpler time when goodies were goodies, baddies were baddies and the former punching the latter usually solved most problems.

Book details

ISBN: 9781401202248
Publisher: DC Comics
Year of publication: 1971

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