I brought this up awhile ago, when Gail Simone came up with an explanation for why Black Canary can still reasonably be mad at Batman for his mind games when, according to the retcon in Identity Crisis, she helped to screw with Batman’s mind, and such a retcon sorta makes Dinah look like a bit of a hypocrite when she is lecturing Batman on the topic of mind games (Here it is – “Why should I change? He’s the one who sucks!”), and it bears repeating again. When another writer uses the character you write poorly, I do not think that you should feel all that much of a duty to address the poor use of your character, because readers are intelligent enough to get that the other writer screwed up. Or, in other words, you don’t need to change, as he’s the one who sucks.
I bring this up now because Green Arrow #62 is the second title in recent months to address how bad Deathstroke made the Justice League look in Identity Crisis #3. In that issue, Deathstroke basically kicked the League’s ass, until their sheer numbers advantage kicked in.
It was a pretty poorly written scene, and it made the Leaguers look pretty ridiculous. So why does it have to be “in continuity”? Why does it have to be “canon”?
As such, a recent Birds of Prey issue was a sort of response to the Identity Crisis issue, by showing how Black Canary can stand toe-to-toe with Deathstroke, and now Judd Winick, in this issue of Green Arrow, shows that so can Green Arrow.
The underlying sense of “why are you bothering to address this silly plot point?” pervaded my reading of this issue, and furthermore, it pervaded the WRITING of the issue, so it’s not even like you can deattach it from the story, so it hurt what was, otherwise, a fun, action-packed issue.
In this issue, Deathstroke shows up to kill Mayor Oliver Queen, but he discovers that it was actually Green Arrow who HIRED him to kill Green Arrow, all part of an elaborate trap by Green Arrow.
What follows is basically an issue long fight, which utilizes Scott McDaniel’s artwork to the fullest, as the coolest part of McDaniel’s Nightwing was always the action scenes.
This issue has tons of them, and they are well drawn by McDaniel and well-written by Winick.
I think Deathstroke SLIGHTLY jobs a bit in the issue, but not as much as you expect. Likewise, I think the whole “Wow! Green Arrow is all bad ass in that year off!” thing was kinda silly, especially as I don’t see how “Running for and winning election as mayor” can exactly coincide with “Going through extensive martial arts training,” but the idea of Green Arrow becoming a more skilled fighter is fine by me, just so long as we don’t have him beating up, like, Lady Shiva or anything.
Anyhow, this was a fun issue, and I think I can actually recommend it (which is a real rarity for a Winick comic book), with the reservation that it seems like it was written in response to the whole Identity Crisis #3 thing, which is silly. Otherwise, though, this was a fun, action-packed comic book.
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