Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Green Arrow #18 Review


Trick Shot

Written by: Benjamin Percy
Art by: Eleonora Carlini, Arif Prianto and Nate Piekos
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 1, 2017

When Rebirth was first announced, the word "legacy" was dished out more than bacon at my dream buffet and while other writers seemed to define it in strange ways, Ben Percy took it at face value and ran with it.  His Green Arrow run has been all about legacy and that's been the strongest part of it.  Ollie and Black Canary being together again, Emiko, Merlyn...the list actually does go on and on.  Of course, you can't talk Green Arrow legacy without at least referencing Roy Harper and Percy has a handful of times already.  However, nothing is better than the real deal and that's what we are getting this week.  Yep, Roy Harper is in the house and he's brought plenty of trick arrows (and baggage) with him!  I am a huge Roy fan and really have enjoyed him in the Titans book during Rebirth, but as they say, there is no place like home, right?  Well, that depends on a whole lot of things and anytime Roy gets involved, things can get a bit complicated.  So, is this a great welcome home for the former side kick or should he have just stayed in that fancy Titans Tower that Dick Grayson just built?  Let's find out...
The issue starts with a flashback of a young Roy Harper and he's up to no good whatsoever.  In fact, he's stealing wallets and while Ben Percy is playing it a bit coy here, it's obvious he picked the worst (or best) wallet to pick in Emerald City.

We then see that young Roy is living Eric Shea's dream...he lives in the mall and he is having a kick ass solo sleepover...shower, dress up, pizza (stuffed crust?) and bow and arrow practice.  That's when Ollie shows up to ruin the party...I mean lend a helping hand.



We then head off to the present where an older and slightly wiser Roy is trying to get to the Indian Reservation on the Spokane Border.  Percy throws us in cold here, but through the dialogue we learn there is a protest going on and the cops are pieces of shit.  They hint at trouble brewing and won't let Roy enter...so he "makes them".

Back in the past we see that Ollie was always proud of his chili and there is nothing a video game session can't do, including let Roy sneak around after Oliver passes out.  He drinks a bit of booze and then finds out Oliver is Green Arrow.  There is no cause and effect there, so kids, just say no!  In two panels, Ollie offers Roy a job, gives him a nickname and even starts a fashion trend that will stick with Roy from here on out.  I mean, the backwards ball cap never goes out of style, right? 

Back in the present, Roy finds a familiar house on the Indian Reserve and we suddenly see that this is all very personal for him.  Through a series of back and forths, we also see that not everything was always so peachy keen here for Roy.



Ben Percy continues jumping back and forth in time and while that isn't something I am always fond of, when the past is so much fun, I'm all for it.  We go back and see Green Arrow and Speedy and it's the best part of a good book.  Seeing Oliver react to all of Roy's trick arrows is priceless and something Green Arrow fans should never grow tired of.

Back in the present, we get a little broader picture of Roy's relationship to the Indian Preserve and it's personal as hell and not exactly cheery.  Right as we get a big bombshell, another explodes and it's game on between the pro Preserve troops and the...Wild Dogs!  Percy has been hinting at Wild Dog entering this book and I guess this is the next best thing.

As Roy makes quick work of some unfortunate Wild Dogs, Oliver shows up and if you wanted a hug it out reunion, you're going to be disappointed.  What it is is realistic.  It also leads to a pretty cool cliffhanger with Roy letting his fingers (well, actually his fist) do the talking for him.  We are left with two former partners being the most unwanted guests ever.



I love Roy Harper and love him with Oliver so how could I not love this issue.  Ben Percy jumps around a whole lot here, but makes it very easy to follow with the juxtaposition of fun and dead seriousness.  I now want a Green Arrow/Speedy book and I want it now!

Eleonora Carlini jumps on the book and continues the tradition of this being one of the best looking books on the shelf.  The action scenes pop and I love the character models for both Oliver and Roy, especially seeing the changes the years have on their costumes.

Bits and Pieces:

Ben Percy continues his focus on the legacy of his main character by throwing in the legacy of his side kick.  This is a must read for Roy Harper fans and the story looks like it will be a bit of a redemption story for him.  The art by Eleonora Carlini is really good and I can easily recommend this issue.

8.5/10

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