Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Spotlight:: Green Arrow vol.2 #2

Credits: Mike Grell (cover, script) Ed Hannigan (pencils) Dick Giordano (color)

Cover Date: March, 1988

Synopsis: This issue picks up immediately after the last issue ended. GA is still trying to figure out how someone could survive an arrow to the chest, while Dinah comforts Dr. Green inside.
The police (and Ollie) rush to the Muncy mansion, determined to find evidence that the perp was indeed Al Muncy. Despite a tourhough search of the place, the cops find nothing. Muncy mocks both the police and Ollie, standing by and sipping beer straight out of the faucet (his family does own a brewery!).

The police conclude that the perp Ollie shot was likely a junkie looking for a fix and hoping that the Doc may have left something laying around. As much as Ollie and Lt. Cameron desperately want to nab Muncy, the evidence at the scene suggests it couldn't have been him (the footprint they found was from a larger, heavier man than Muncy).

Just then, GA has a flash of inspiration. Rushing back to the mansion, they find a partial suit of armor and a mocking note from Muncy. Green Arrow remembered the suit from earlier... when it had also included a chainmail shirt (explaining how Muncy could have survived the arrow AND why his footprints were those of a heavier man). They also find the secret passages and tunnels that the Muncy family used for bootlegging during Prohibition.

GA and Lt. Cameron down the villain...straight to Cameron's house. Muncy has Cameron's daughter and plans to kill both her and Cameron just to prove he can. Luckily, GA intervenes and puts an arrow through Muncy's wrist. Muncy manages to escape in a super sweet classic car back to his brewery. Again he mocks GA, telling him that there's another exit from the tunnel system and that he'll never find him. Muncy jumps into the elevator into the tunnels and flips the switch...and goes straight into a giant pool of beer. Earlier we'd seen GA open a valve, but were given no reason. Now we see he used it as a lethal (but probably delicious!) trap.

Thoughts: Well, Ollie kill another guy at the end of this issue, and doesn't seem to upset about it either. I can handle the grim Ollie who killed because he had to, but he seems to do it a bit too casually for my tastes in this issue. Lt. Cameron even gets on him about it, pointing out that if the perp from earlier hadn't been wearing armor, he would have been a dead man. If it turned out to be Muncy, no one would shed too many tears, but if it was some kid looking for a fix...well, Cameron promised trouble. I like that Dr. Green and Dinah spend some time talking about their mutual pain; Dinah seems to draw a great comfort from it.

I still enjoyed reading this issue. It was well written and paced, I'm just not sure of the characterization that Grell is using for GA at this point.


Anonymous said...

Hmm.....while the mystery is good, complete with a creative (if unheroic) out-think, I definitely agree with you about Ollie's characterization. Clever writing is worth a lot, but if you sacrifice the soul of the character, it becomes irrelevant.

Luke said...

Ironically, just last night I watched an episode of The Drew Carey Show where Oswald and Lewis wound up in a vat of beer.

The dark n' grim Green Arrow is weird to me. I guess I always figured Green Arrow for the wisecracker more than the bonebreaker. Again, it's a characterization informed by Batman and his various tonal shifts over the years, but considering the time period as well as the longevity of this characterization, I'd say Grell found an audience with it. I mean, this predated dark n' grim Aquaman by a good 6 years, so obviously he got on the trend at the correct time.