Comic Book Questions Answered – where I answer whatever questions you folks might have about comic books (feel free to e-mail questions to me at email@example.com).
Just recently, I did a piece on the origins of the Green Arrow, in terms of how Mort Weisinger was influenced by the serial, The Green Archer, to name Green Arrow, well, you know, the Green Arrow.
However, my buddy Keith M. wrote in to say that I should ALSO explain where the ARROW part of Green Arrow came from. Keith actually had the answer already, but he thought that it was worth sharing with all of you, as well, and I think he's correct.
You see, as it turned out, by the time that the Green Arrow debuted in mid-1941, there had already been THREE superheroes using the name "Arrow"!
The first debuted just a few months after Superman, in Centaur Publishing's Funny Pages (Vol.2) #10, dubbed The Arrow (created by Paul Gustavson, who later created the Angel for Marvel and the Human Bomb for Quality)...
Then, in the short-lived Green Giant Comics #1, we see the Black Arrow (creators unknown)...
And finally, in the same issue that Captain Marvel made his debut, Whiz Comics #2, we also met the Golden Arrow by Bill Parker and Pete Costanza...
Golden Arrow and The Arrow were actually STILL RUNNING as features when Green Arrow debuted!
So, yes, clearly there was a simple inspiration for calling a superhero ____ Arrow by the time Weisinger came up with Oliver Queen. Coupled with The Green Archer, Green Arrow has one of the more explained name origins in comic book history.
If anyone else has a comic book question that they'd like to get an answer for, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!