Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Brief Hiatus

Sorry guys, no new posts until after Dragon*Con, but you can expect a full report on the con once it is complete!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

GA Trading Card

Sorry guys, no Ollie Watch today (no Ollie to Watch) so instead enjoy this Green Arrow Trading card. It commemorates GA's first solo title, a four issue miniseries.

EDIT: Sorry, I forgot to mention that this card was a gift from ARROWHEAD member Rob Kelly. Thanks Rob!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Trick Arrow of the Week: Arrow-Bomb plus!

In a post that raises more questions than it answers, the giant Bomb/Three Stage Rocket/Morse Code Arrow!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Recommendation Arrow: Elongated Man

A few weeks ago, while digging through quarter bins at a local shop, I found all four issues of an Elongated Man mini I never knew existed! I've always had a soft spot for the Dibneys, so I decided to pick it up!

Man, am I glad I did! The plot is goofy, as one would expect in a book starring Elongated Man. Ralph and Sue are on vacation, trying to get away from the superhero lifestyle and just relax. Unfortunately, Ralph is unable to control his showboating, and ends up causing a scene nearly everywhere they go.

At a diplomatic function in France, the Dibneys meet up with Bito Wladon, ruler of the small European country of Modora. The name sounds familiar to Ralph, but he can't quite place it. Sue, of course, is thoroughly charmed. After Sue and Ralph retire to bed, they get in a knock-down, drag out fight about Ralph's total inability to take anything seriously.

Distraught, Sue runs to the arms of Wladon, who kindly invites them to tour his country...

The story gets goofier after that, including European themed villains like Escargot, Calamari, and the Wurst Gang (a group of super-villains dressed as various sausages) from France, Italy, and Germany respectively.

If you like fun, entertaining comics, make sure to check this one out!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Justice League of America #4

In an unbelievable display of generosity ARROWHEAD member Rick Phillips has sent your humble correspondent a copy of Justice League of America #4, the issue where Green Arrow joins the Justice League as its first non-founding member!

The book is in rough shape, but its still perfectly readable. Expect a report on this ish in the next few days!

Rick, you're the best!

Spotlight:: World's Finest Comics #98

Issue: World's Finest Comics #98

Title: "The Unmasked Archers"

Credits: Ed Herron (script) Roz and Jack Kirby (art)

Cover Date: December, 1958

Synopsis: Oliver Queen and Roy Harper are hanging out at Queen's club when the Police Commissioner (presumably of Star City, though Ollie's Base of Operations is as yet unnamed) tells him that the next night the club officers will be named.

Just then, the duo notice the Arrow Signal in the sky. While ducking into a room to change, they see a newspaper headline: Oliver Queen and Roy Harper are Green Arrow and Speedy!" With their secret IDs blown, they decide to finish this one mission, then hang up their bows.

Arriving on the scene, the archers use fan arrows to drive away the smokescreen the criminals were using to hide themselves, and then a (I swear I'm not making this up) fountain pen arrow to mark the car to make the crooks easier to follow.

Afterward, Ollie and Roy present themselves to the Police Commissioner to turn themselves in. The Commissioner think s they're joking, as apparently the newspaper was a fake, designed as a joke on Ollie as part of his club initiation. Now the pair must play along, allowing the Commish to believe they're just dressing up in a costume as part of the initiation.

Soon, they're called on the thwart a train robbery. Ollie must act as though he;s just a guy in a costume, while at the same time foiling the robbery. He shows up and fires off an arrow, missing by several yards. This convinces the Commissioner that he's just Oliver playing along with the joke, but the arrow ricochets over the train and launches a net, capturing the crooks.

The Commissioner is fully convinced by the Arrow-plane flying overhead. Obviously Ollie can't be GA if Green Arrow is flying s plane over their heads. We later find out that Roy had used a Balloon Arrow shaped like the plane to simulate the silhouette across the moon. (Why Roy didn't just fly the actual Arrow Plane overhead is a mystery).

Thoughts: Wow, this story was a bunch of convoluted nonsense, even by Silver Age standards. Nothing about it really makes sense, from the strange club initiation to the Balloon Arrow trick. I guess we can just chalk it up to Silver Age weirdness and a need to compress the story into 4 pages.

Up next: Green Arrow's origin story!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Ollie Watch: August 20th, 2008

Batman and the Outsiders #10: Can anyone tell me if Ollie is still on this team? I haven't been keeping up with the series, and he's not on the cover. Makes me wonder...

Justice League of America vol. 2 #24: Join Black Canary and Animal as they team up with the rest of the JLA to fight a new villain for control of Vixen's Tantu Totem!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Spotlight:: Green Arrow vol. 2 #11

Issue: Green Arrow vol. 2 #11

Title: Here There Be Dragons part 3

Credits: Mike Grell (plot) Ed Hannigan, Dick Giordano (art)

Cover Date: December, 1988

Synopsis: Picking up where we left off, Ollie has been shot in the chest by Shado's arrow. He survives, but it takes him many weeks to recover. Delirious with pain, he remembers past conversations with Dinah about their having children. Ollie is up for it, but Dinah's recent injuries have rendered her unable to have kids.

Meanwhile, Shado has moved them to a secluded luxury villa. After a friendly archery competition (which Shado wins) they go spear fishing in the bay. As they fish, Shado tells her life story.

Shado's father dishonored his Oyibun, and had to be executed. To remove the stain of dishonor from her family, Shado was marked with the Dragon tattoo and trained with the elderly master (killed in the last issue) to become a living weapon for the Yakuza.

As she and Ollie return from their journey, they notice several sets of footprints on the beach. Yakuza commandos have arrived intent (for reasons as yet unexplained) on kidnapping the villa's elderly gardener, in addition to killing Shado. Ollie and Shado fight off the soldiers, but fail to save the old man, who dies of a heart attack in front of them. Suddenly, the commando's boat roars off. Enraged at the senseless death of the old man, Shado makes an impossible shot, killing the pilot of the boat and causing it to smash into some rocks and explode...

Thoughts: Another excellent issue, where we get some background on Shado. One thing I found interesting was Shado's thoughts on Ollie's archery. Where she becomes one with the bow, Ollie seeks to dominate it and bend it to his will. We also get a glimpse at GA's mild chauvinism when he blithely assumes that the pull on his bow would be too much for the lady Shado

Next time: the conclusion to the Shado arch!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Special Saturday Edition: Batman Comic Strip

Hey guys! In a bit of news, I got a hold of issue #11 of the Grell Green Arrow series. Now I have enough material to last until Dragoncon, where I anticipate filling in most of the remaining holes in my collection. As such, I no longer have to use the Batman Strip as filler on Mondays. From now until the strip is completed, I'll be running the strip on Saturdays instead.

Here's the first of this series where Green Arrow appears:

Friday, August 15, 2008

Trick Arrow of the Week: Mind Reading Arrow

You know, with all his liberal ideals and objection to magically induced mind wipes, you'd think Oliver Queen would be a little more respectful of people's civil rights. Apparently not:

Big Brother wears green!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Spotlight:: Adventure Comics #255

Issue: Adventure Comics #255

Title: "The War That Never Ended!"

Credits: Dave Wood (script) Jack and Roz Kirby

Cover Date: December, 1958

Synopsis: Green Arrow and his partner Speedy are on a Trans-Pacific flight, headed to Japan for the "International Crime Convention" (I want to see the Bonnie and Clyde cos-players!) when their plane has engine trouble and ditches in the ocean. In raft with no paddle, the duo drift away from the other survivors, fighting off a shark attack and washing up on a desert island.

Suddenly, The Emerald Archer and his sidekick are ambushed by a group of Japanese soldiers! When a typhoon destroyed their radio in June, 1945, the soldiers were cut off from the outside world. Convinced the war is still ongoing, and that GA and Speedy are enemy spies, the soldiers attack, detaining Green Arrow (Speedy manages to escape).

The Japanese major explains that after their radio was knocked out, a typhoon destroyed their heavy weapons. Spotting an American fleet on maneuvers, he demands Green Arrow use his engineering abilities to build them arrow-based artillery to attack the fleet.

GA complies, building them catapult powered Mine Arrows and Bomb Arrows. Just as the weapons are launched, Speedy commences with a rescue operation. The Japanese are defeated, and it turns out that GA weapons are harmless, and serve only to signal the fleet of his presence.

Finally convinced that the war is over, the Japanese major and his men honorably surrender to GA aboard the American ships.

Thoughts: Another "Japanese soldiers trapped on an island who don't know the war is over" story, but well done and fun. Some of the arrows are especially trippy, even for the Silver Age, especially the Bomb Arrow, which deployed a giant Green Arrow instead of exploding. How Ollie managed to pull that off while the Japanese soldiers were watching is another story in itself :)

Again, excellent art by Jack Kirby and his wife Roz, but that pretty much goes without saying.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Ollie Watch: August 11th, 2008

Out Tomorrow:

Green Arrow/Black Canary #11:
The circumstances behind Connor's shooting will finally be revealed! (supposedly)

UPDATE: I just got back from the comic shop and read this book...the plot thickens...

Monday, August 11, 2008

Spotlight:: Batman Comic Strip

(Our weekly review of the Grell Green Arrow series will pause temporarily, as I have a gap in my collection. Until that gap is filled, we'll replace it with a new feature!)

Running in Amazing World of DC #4 and #5, this strip features Batman, Robin, and our resident hero, Green Arrow. This is going to be a long post, as I'm putting up all the strips before GA appears in the strip in the first post. Future posts will feature much smaller sets of strips.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Trick Arrow of the Week: Flare Arrow

Trick Arrow of the Week: Flare Arrow

In honor of the opening of the 2008 Olympic Games, we at the Arrowcave present this week's trick arrow: The Flare Arrow! Famous for lighting the Olympic flame at the 1992 Games in Barcelona, this arrow, presumably purchased from Queen Industries, goes down in history as one of the coolest ways ever invented to light a fire!

I ask you to compare the following two images:


Eh? Eh?

Queen Industries, proud sponsor of the Olympic Games since 1941

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

New Blog Joins the Family

My good buddy El Jacone over at the Comic Book Bunker has started up a new blog about the Gliding Gladiator himself, Hawkman. So head on over to Being Carter Hall as El Jacone blogs his way through becoming a Hawkfan!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Quarter Bin Bonanza: Part 4

Quarter Bin Bonanza: Part 4

Well kids, the stars aligned once again for your truely to make the treck out into the comic buying wilderness known as the quarter bin. This time I was joined by fellow blogger Ljacone!

As Ljacone and his wife were staying at the Arrowcave for the weekend, we had a chance to go out hunting on Saturday. We ended up at the Lawrenceville location of Galactic Quest, which I'd been to before, but don't get to very much, and was a new experience for Ljacone.

The quarter bin hunting was pretty awesome, here's what I got:

Firestorm: I found about half a dozen issues of the second series I needed, which helps fill in some gaps. Unfortunately, the later issues seem to be really hard to find. A problem for another day I suppose. Issues 30, 33, 34, 45, and 53 found their way into my longboxes

Doctor Strange: Ljacone found 3 issues of the Sorcerer Supreme series in one of the boxes he was searchin through. This brings me within 5 issues of completing that run. I got 59, 60, and 62.

Defenders: Nothing in the bins this time, which is not at all surprising, since all the issues I need are within the first 15 issues or so. I did however locate issues 5, 8, and 9 in the regular back stock. They're in really good shape, and I got them for a good price since they were having a half off sale.

Namor: Just one issue this time, issue 34 of the second series. Almost done with this one too.

New Stuff

Martian Manhunter: I don't collect this character, since his appearances are almost all in expensive issues of Dectective or JLA, but I found most of the late 90's Ostrander run of Martian Manhunter in the quarter bin. I know Frank over at Idol-Head dislikes this series, but I figured I would give it a shot, sinceI like ol' J'onn, and he came cheap enough!

Sword of the Atom: I like Ray Palmer, and I found the last issue of his mini series in the bin. Now I just need to find the rest of them!

Random Stuff

Supergirl: I randomly found the issue of Supergirl (#10) which guest stars none other than Prez! This confirms that Prez was somehow President of the United States in DV mainstream DC universe. Should make for a good read!

OHOTMU: Book of the Dead. Sounds like fun!

Flaming Carrot Comics #26: When a cover advertises Zombies, Umpires, Turtles, and Fools, you kno it must be fun!

Tom Strong: Tom Strong is a good series, and I found 3 issues for a quarter each. No brainer folks!

All in all, a good run. I'm especially excited about the Supergirl issue (more Prez!) and the big chunk of Martian Manhunter I have waiting for me.

Admin Note: I apologize for sparse posting schedule last week. Somehow some bad Chinese food got past the Arrow-food tasters, and yours truly was struck down with super food poisoning!