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Thread: Green Arrow FAQ

  1. #1
    tschuss
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    Default Green Arrow FAQ

    WHO IS GREEN ARROW?

    Green Arrow is a vigilante crime-fighter in the DC Universe. He has no super-powers, but is an expert fighter and archer. He is considered by many to be a modern-day Robin Hood, fighting for the rights of the downtrodden and abused against the wealthy aristocrats whose crimes escape the justice system. His alter-ego is Oliver Queen.

    WHAT WAS HIS FIRST APPEARANCE?

    More Fun Comics #73 in 1941.

    WHAT WAS HIS ORIGIN STORY?

    Oliver Queen was a wealthy world traveler, as well as a son of privilege. During a cruise, however, he was thrown overboard and stranded on the deserted Star Fish Island. Forced to fend for himself, he learned to catch food and survive using a bow and arrow. He escaped the island and upon returning home, became Green Arrow, the defender of Star City.

    WHAT WERE HIS EARLIEST ADVENTURES LIKE?

    Green Arrow was an adventurer in the classic pulp style. He used his fortune to fight crime with the aid of his teenage sidekick, Speedy (whose alter-ego was Roy Harper). This was during the heyday of the Golden Age Batman and Robin duo, and comics had a very lighthearted feel. The good guys and bad guys were very obviously defined and a hero’s greatest cause was stopping traditional bank-robbing criminals. During this time, Green Arrow and Speedy were substantially little more than Batman and Robin clones. Green Arrow fought crime from an underground fortress known as the “Arrow Cave”. He also had the Arrow Car, the Arrow Jet, and the Arrow Signal.

    Green Arrow’s world would be turned upside-down as his system of beliefs would be challenged and ultimately, changed forever. From this, social consciousness would become valid thematic content in the world of mainstream superhero comics.

    WHAT CAUSED THE CHANGE?

    A change was definitely in the works. Artist Neal Adams would update the character’s appearance and costume in The Brave and the Bold #85. This costume and style is still being used by the character today.

    In the 1960’s, social values were changing in the United States. Civil rights and progressivism were on the upswing and young people (college students, particularly) were taking a renewed interest in comic books, in no small part due to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. A writer at DC named Dennis O’Neil decided that the classic character Green Arrow should get a new outlook. This opened up a world of new possibilities.

    WHAT HAPPENED?

    Oliver Queen lost his fortune. Roy dabbled in heroin abuse. In short, they tore down the pretentious veneer that had covered the superhero genre for so many years. This was pretty revolutionary at the time, as comics were still largely considered to be a kids’ medium and drug use had not been shown in a comic book before. This garnered national attention, as well as changing the character forever. Now Green Arrow had to challenge his definition of what it means to be a hero in the real world. He became a crusader, fighting for the rights of the poor and underprivileged, as well as stopping social cancers such as drug abuse, racism, homelessness, and the deification of wealth.

    WHAT’S THIS ABOUT “HARD TRAVELING HEROES”/GREEN LANTERN?

    One of the most famous Green Arrow stories involves Oliver Queen teaming up with Green Lantern (Hal Jordan) for a cross-country road trip. It all begins when Arrow reveals a group of poor citizens angrily deriding a businessman to be the victims of an unscrupulous slum lord. Lantern is shocked to find that crime exists in many forms and there are two sides to every argument. The irony of Lantern’s quest for justice is exposed by an old man who says (referring to the aliens and other-worldly beings that GL saves): "I been readin' about you... how you work for the blue skins, and how on a planet someplace you helped out the orange skins... and you done considerable for the purple skins. Only there's skins you never bothered with... the black skins. I want to know, how come? Answer me that, Green Lantern.” Lantern is forced to admit he can’t.

    This all seems old-hat by today’s standards, but it was jaw-droppingly revolutionary when it was originally published. These were some of the first instances of a costumed superhero being questioned and forced to face problems he couldn’t smash his way through with his fists.

    Lantern and Arrow decide to take a road-trip and discover the true America. Along the way, they face the problem of racial discrimination against Native Americans among other relevant topics.

    Lantern’s place in the story was basically to serve as a contrast to Arrow’s liberal-leaning tendencies. Hal Jordan was a fighter pilot chosen by the Guardians of the Universe to become a member of the Green Lantern Corps, a vaguely militaristic unit that patrolled the far reaches of the known galaxies to stop crime. As a “space cop”, Jordan represented the establishment, that, in the mind of Oliver Queen, must be questioned and never trusted. They wound up being the best of friends despite their differing outlooks on justice.

    WHO IS BLACK CANARY?

    Dinah Lance. She is also a crime-fighter and the long-time love of Oliver Queen. She appeared in Green Lantern/Green Arrow’s “HTH” arc. During the 70’s, her relationship with Ollie progressed as she opened a flower shop.

    HOW ABOUT GREEN ARROW IN THE 70s?

    Roy and Ollie were no longer fighting crime together (Roy had to battle his addictions), but they remained close. In the 70’s, Ollie continued to be a comic book character that reflected the times. He listened to jazz and rock music, enjoyed modern art, lived in a swingin’ bachelor pad and generally outcooled every other comic book character. During this period, the most notable GA writer was Maggin… the era of Mike Grell would come a bit later.

    Green Arrow would appear frequently in the pages of Action Comics, Green Lantern, World’s Finest Comics, as well as Justice League of America. Ollie was notorious for his arguments with Hawkman, who was very much a conservative.

    WHAT CAME NEXT?

    Green Arrow quit the JLA. He decided that they were only interested in fighting the bigger battles that occurred between super-powered entities bent on world domination. Quitting in favor of fighting more realistic battles very in-tune with the character. Also very in-tune was his new inclusion in Detective Comics. ‘Tec was originally the title that showcased dark and grim life in the streets. With the inception of Batman in 1938, it became the Dark Knight’s title. Still featured, however, were back-up stories printed after Batman’s adventures. These stories were Ollie’s new home.

    WHAT ABOUT OLLIE’S APPEARANCE IN THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS?

    In Frank Miller’s famed Dark Knight Returns, Oliver makes an appearance as an elderly man missing an arm. This story is set in an alternate reality where Batman is coming back from retirement. He must become a hero for this dark new world where the streets are run by crime, particularly an evil gang known as “the Mutants”. It’s a revolutionary story in that it questions the true nature of heroism and where the values and loyalties of idolized costumed superheroes truly lie. Superman has become a political liability and Batman and Green Arrow are outlaws. Ollie has done jail-time and is wanted by the FBI. He aids in Batman’s fight against Superman…really, I shouldn’t have to explain too much. Read it if you haven’t yet.

    WHAT WAS “THE LONGBOW HUNTERS”?

    The Longbow Hunters was a three-issue mini-series written by Mike Grell. It would become one of the definitive Green Arrow stories. In it, Grell wanted to tell a more street-level Arrow story about revenge and the darker side of the fight for justice. We see Ollie as a bit older, reaching middle-age and moving to Seattle with Dinah (Black Canary). Here he would get a new costume, as well as a new outlook. This Green Arrow would take a more violent and bloody approach to fighting crime. I don’t want to reveal what happens to Dinah and Ollie (it’s ugly) so go read it for yourself.

  2. #2
    tschuss
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    WHO IS EDDIE FYERS?

    Introduced in “The Longbow Hunters”, Eddie Fyers (whose name has also been spelled “Fyres”) was a one time CIA operative and now mercenary. His life intercepted Ollie’s and he would go on to take Connor Hawke under his wing after Ollie died.

    WHO IS CONNOR HAWKE?

    Connor is Ollie’s son. Connor’s mother is Moonday Hawke. He grew up in a monastery and has led a very sheltered life. Unlike his outspoken father, Connor is quiet and thoughtful, although they share a lot of the same beliefs and attitudes. Connor would become the new Green Arrow and even join the JLA (he was instrumental in defeating the Key). Although a brilliant archer, Oliver Queen was still considered by many to be the original and truest Green Arrow as well as a better marksman. Connor is also adept at martial arts. During the 90’s, Chuck Dixon was the main Green Arrow writer, and also the writer most associated with this character.

    WHAT’S ALL THIS ABOUT OLLIE DYING?

    In 1995, Oliver Queen died. He sacrificed his own life to trigger a bomb so that innocents would be saved. As I mentioned above, Connor would become the new Green Arrow for most of the 90’s.

    WHAT’S UP WITH OLLIE’S RETURN/KEVIN SMITH?

    One of the most popular writers in the industry is Kevin Smith. The film writer/director has been a comic book fan from the beginning, and he was a perfect fit when he re-launched Daredevil for Marvel in the late 90’s. His first work for DC came in the form of another re-launch…this time, Green Arrow, and the resurrection of Oliver Queen.

    In typical style, Smith wanted to make an action-packed return-to-form that was full of in-gags, references, and a deep respect for comic book history. In his story, “Quiver”, Oliver is brought back by his old friend, Hal Jordan. Hal quit the Green Lantern gig and, long story short, eventually became the Spectre (check out the GL FAQ if you have any questions). Using trace fragments of Ollie’s DNA that were found in Superman’s cape, he re-constructed his old friend from the skeleton up. One small caveat – The new Ollie’s memory doesn’t extend after the infamous road trip. Hal wanted to bring back the Green Arrow everyone knew and loved. Ollie’s dark years in Seattle, his infidelity with Dinah, his grisly death… they were all part of a dark past that the new Ollie had no part of. Implausible? Sure. A great way to start over again? Definitely. The Oliver Queen featured in “Quiver” was, for many fans, a return to form, as well as a chance for Ollie to get re-acquainted with his adopted son, Roy, as well as his biological son, Connor.

    This arc introduced Mia, a young former prostitute who Ollie takes under his wing, as well as re-introducing many characters from the past (Black Canary included). It’s also a lot of fun to read, so I won’t give away the ending.

    IS GREEN ARROW STILL BEING PUBLISHED?

    Yes. Oliver Queen is still Green Arrow, the outspoken, opinionated, kindhearted, hot-headed yet well-meaning, brave, dedicated, overly-amorous, liberal, funny, flawed, and heroic character he was meant to be. After his rebirth in the new millennium, Ollie continues to appear in the current Green Arrow series written by Brad Meltzer and more recently by Judd Winick. Until a few months ago, the art was done by Phil Hester and Ande Parks. Mia’s role has evolved, Connor continues to fight the good fight next to his dad, and Green Arrow is still garnering headlines in the New York Times, a few decades on.

    WHO ARE SOME OF THE CREATORS ASSOCIATED WITH GREEN ARROW?

    Dennis O’Neil and Neal Adams first and foremost. Mike Grell, Elliot Maggin, Chuck Dixon, Kevin Smith, Phil Hester, Ande Parks, and many other talented creators have left a distinct spot in GA history.

    WHY DO PEOPLE LIKE GREEN ARROW/OLIVER QUEEN?

    Green Arrow is one of the few comic book characters whose most distinguishing characteristics aren’t his powers, but his beliefs. His superpowers are his convictions. This leaves a very indelible impression on the readers.

    Also, Ollie’s a very complex character. He’s flawed, like we all are. He has an extreme weakness for the opposite sex (he simply can’t resist the ladies) and he has, in the past, not been there for either of his two sons. Yet, he continues on. His strength lies in his ideological fortitude, as well as his dedication to true justice. He believes in speaking up for the voiceless and protecting those unable to protect themselves. He is wary of those with too much power and influence, as he is smart enough to recognize injustice in places other heroes are trained only to see good.

    Ultimately, Ollie is popular because he is evidence you don’t need lasers shooting out of your butt to be a hero (not that there's anything wrong with lasers shooting out of your butt).

    I’M NEW. WHAT ARE SOME ESSENTIAL GREEN ARROW READS? WHERE SHOULD I START?

    This is actually one of the most popular questions I see at CBR. Every week there is a new thread asking for Green Arrow recommendations.

    You should read:

    Green Lantern/Green Arrow by Dennis O’Neil and Neal Adams
    (This is broken up into two volumes. Volume 1 is not listed on DC’s website, but you can still buy it from online comic book retailers. Click HERE for Volume 2.

    The Longbow Hunters by Mike Grell

    The current volume, including:

    Quiver by Kevin Smith, Hester and Parks

    The Sounds of Violence by Smith, Hester, and Parks

    Archer’s Quest by Brad Meltzer, Hester and Parks

    Straight Shooter by Judd Winick, Hester and Parks

    City Walls by Winick, Hester and Parks

    As well as any back issues you might be able to find.

    CAN YOU RECOMMEND A GREEN ARROW WEBSITE?

    Yes. An excellent resource is the Unofficial Green Arrow Fansite by Jayme Blaschke and Scott McCullar. Tons of interviews and information. A great all around site that seems to have been made with a lot of passion.

  3. #3
    Loveable retard twilight's Avatar
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    Who are some of Ollie's foes?

  4. #4
    tschuss
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    Quote Originally Posted by twilight
    Who are some of Ollie's foes?
    Good question. :) Green Arrow is not known for an extensive rogue's gallery. He's no Batman, but Ollie has had his share of foes over the years. Count Vertigo, Drakon, Brick, Clock King, Bonfire, Pete Lomax, Shado, and Onomatopoeia are some of them.

  5. #5
    Join the Mobile Infantry! Adem's Avatar
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    Is there any other title besides Green Arrow where Ollie is featured often?

  6. #6
    tschuss
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wane
    Is there any other title besides Green Arrow where Ollie is featured often?
    On a consistent basis? No. However, Ollie is a reserve JLA member, and has a hand in many DCU affairs. While Green Arrow is the only Ollie-centric title, he makes guest appearances all over the place.

    Recently, he's played a huge role in Identity Crisis (he was the narrator), and will probably play a big part in the upcoming Infinite Crisis as well as the upcoming JLA arc that bridges the two. Ollie's also been a major player in Green Lantern: Rebirth, not to mention one-offs in a bunch of other places (I've seen him in Gotham Knights and Outsiders).

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    MobyDick&theLightsabers SpecialAgentPunk's Avatar
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    how do the present day comics compare with those of the 60's/70's? Do they still present a social commentary or is it more focused on action?
    --Hurdy Gur--

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    14 Time Rita's Champion SUPERECWFAN1's Avatar
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    Hmm would love to see a description and update on his brief Rogues gallery. Be cool to see.
    "Heads up-- If Havok's position in UA #5 really upset you, it's time to drown yourself hobo piss. Seriously, do it. It's the only solution." - Rick Remender

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  9. #9
    tschuss
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpecialAgentPunk
    how do the present day comics compare with those of the 60's/70's? Do they still present a social commentary or is it more focused on action?
    Sorry it's been so long since I posted back. Still here? :)

    I think the social commentary isn't quite as prevelant or deliberate as it once was, but it's around in some form or another. Issues such as public housing, corporate interests, drugs, and prostitution are at the fore, but they're not elaborated on to such a degree that you could equate reading Green Arrow with reading a doctoral thesis or anything. Don't cancel your subscription to Harper's just yet. Having said that, however, GA does a better job of discussing relevant social issues than just about any mainstream comic book currently published. It's intrinsic to the character and I don't think you could do a proper GA story otherwise. As I believe I've mentioned above, there was an issue published recently that garned national attention in the media. IIRC, everyone from the New York Times to Entertainment Weekly had a sidebar when it was revealed in issue #43 that young Mia was HIV-positive, a remnant from her days as a teenage hooker. The story's writer, Judd Winick, is a very vocal advocate for HIV awareness.

    Click here for Jonah's write-up on CBR.

    SUPERECWFAN - I'll see if I can find anything online for you. :)

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    14 Time Rita's Champion SUPERECWFAN1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pennywisdom
    SUPERECWFAN - I'll see if I can find anything online for you. :)

    Thanks man. ;)
    "Heads up-- If Havok's position in UA #5 really upset you, it's time to drown yourself hobo piss. Seriously, do it. It's the only solution." - Rick Remender

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  11. #11
    tschuss
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    SUPERECWFAN1 - I hate to say it, but I'm having a hard time finding an updated, definitive listing of Green Arrow's rogues gallery. GA was never known for his villains, so searching the internet yields hit-or-miss results.

    Your best bet is to check out the websites of Jayme Lynn Blaschke or Scott McCullar. These two guys are both very big fans of GA and are the source for GA info online. At one point, their respective GA sites were merged into one massive compendium of info. Now, the two sites have split up.

    Click here for Jayme Lynn Blaschke's Unofficial Green Arrow Shrine

    Click here for The Unofficial Green Arrow Compendium by Scott McCullar.

    Also check out Jayme Lynn Blaschke's blog. It has an e-mail link near the bottom.

    I'll post back when I find anything online that would make a worthy addition to this thread.

    And anyone else who wants to add more info... keep it coming!
    Last edited by pennywisdom; 10-20-2005 at 10:42 PM. Reason: Updating link

  12. #12
    Call me AK Asian Knight's Avatar
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    I have a JLA issue where Ollie butts heads with Hawkman. He's stated something about the lil people in the world. Where the Justice League shouldn't be using the Watchtower but instead should patrolling the streets.

    Whats his problem with the Watchtower and watching the world from it? True, they are at the problem right away at the scene. But then again, why does he refer to the normal people as the lil people?

  13. #13
    tschuss
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asian Knight
    I have a JLA issue where Ollie butts heads with Hawkman. He's stated something about the lil people in the world. Where the Justice League shouldn't be using the Watchtower but instead should patrolling the streets.

    Whats his problem with the Watchtower and watching the world from it? True, they are at the problem right away at the scene. But then again, why does he refer to the normal people as the lil people?
    Hey, Asian Knight. :) Good question. When Ollie talks about "the little people", he's referring to average citizens like you and me. It's not meant as an insult. He's not saying that average folks are bad, he's just saying that they don't have the powers and capabilities that the members of the JLA do. It's important to understand that when Ollie mentions "the little people" or "the little guy", he's including himself in that group. He doesn't have any superpowers, either, so he views himself as being closer to a normal joe than he does to JLA members.

    Ollie also believes that the JLA only uses their immense powers to fight bigger battles against aliens and fantastical beings that threaten the entire world. Ollie feels that there are equally important battles being waged on the street. Average people have to face problems like drug abuse, homelessness, disease, poverty, and government cutbacks every day. To the everyday citizen, these probelms are massive, but the JLA doesn't seem to be fighting them. Instead, they're typically more concerned with "superhero" things.

    Ollie usually feels that the JLA is out of touch with humanity. Because of their powers, Ollie believes they forget what it's like to be regular. Whether or not he's right is debatable, of course, but he might have a point. The JLA are nearly god-like beings who, instead of being down here with us, watch over us from space. They're a bit distanced from the populace, and, as such, have more of a "Big Brother" role. This is what Ollie wants to see changed.

  14. #14
    The first and last Lexington's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=pennywisdom;2057822]SUPERECWFAN1 - I hate to say it, but I'm having a hard time finding an updated, definitive listing of Green Arrow's rogues gallery. [QUOTE]

    I think now there kinda putting Slade with green arrow after indentity crisis and then he attacks olli in his office. Also futher evidence for this is that now the 'lego' like toys dc have brought out have them both in a double pack.

  15. #15
    Leaf on the Wind Congo Jack's Avatar
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    Default Green Arrow FAQ

    Don't know if this thread is still going, but I've got a couple of questions about Ollie's age. I've only recently started getting into Green Arrow so I'm still a little green (oh, I slay me) on the guy, so:

    What age is he when he gets stranded on the island?
    When he recruits Roy Harper?
    And in the current DCU?
    EAT GLASS, LAWMAN!

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