Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters by Mike Grell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Spoilerish. Finally getting around to finishing this after it sat sadly neglected during the holidays. This was my second choice reading since I couldn't get my hands on what I really wanted at the time, which was Captain America: The Chosen (but I have it now).
I liked how the story opened with the hunters versus prey analogy, painting the city as an urban jungle of sorts, but I wasn't immediately drawn into the story. It wasn't a bad story, but it wasn't doing much for me. Moments of it like the talk that Oliver and Dinah had after sex where she says she won't make orphans with Oliver were really poignant and touching, magnified by the art that manage to capture so much of the sorrow surrounding that moment. And Oliver's feelings about his mortality and his place in the world was expressed well, too. I had to chuckle a little when he referred to himself as grandfatherly at 40 since in this modern era, that age is when life truly begins for many people these days.
But despite all these elements that I usually adore in a story, it was slow to pull me in. It wasn't until Dinah's rescue that I found myself gripped and unable to put this down until I finished. That's when it stopped being a typical 80s midlife crisis comic. The imagery and words from that point on really gripped the horror of what was happening. My heart started pounding fast at the distress on Oliver's face when he found Dinah being tortured. The panels manage to catch the desperation he felt at witnessing that scene, and finally learning about Shado who asked Oliver why his struggle with the men who hurt Dinah was more valid than the honor, and consequently her life, that she lost because of them.
It became much more than a story of good and evil where killing is wrong and due justice is the only right answer. It seems to convey that sometimes you have to cross the line, but it doesn't come without its cost.
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