Review Green Arrow #17 “The Kill Machine”



Queen Industries is gone, sold to Stellmoor International. And Oliver does not find out about it until he watches the morning news. He immediately goes to confront Emerson about what is going on and instead walks into a lecture about how he still acts as a pampered, spoiled brat. Then something happens that turns Oliver’s whole world upside down. With a shot of an arrow, Oliver Queen will lose everything in his life and learn that his destiny just may have been all mapped out from the very beginning.

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This issue kicks off what appears to be a new direction for the series under a new creative team. Since I have not read this book regularly since Kevin Smith’s run, I am assuming that the book is trying to tie itself ever so much with the CW television series. Jeff Lemire takes over the writing duties and he’s pushing the point that Oliver is not ready to handle responsibility a little too hard for my liking. Furthermore, the way he writes Oliver just does not ring true to me. He clearly does not have his head on straight and is prone to letting mistakes affect him whereas the older Oliver would calm down and think on is feet to get out of whatever jam he is in. A good example is when he faces off with a superior marksman, thinking the guy is too much of a talker.  By focusing just on that trait he neglects his opponent’s ability with the bow and arrow.


The illustrations are by Andrea Sorrentino. Sorrentino appears to be trying to draw the book with a sense of gritty realism. I’m just not quite sure if it works for this book. It seems that she is inspired from Michael Gaydos and how he drew Alias from Marvel. The problem is that I can’t figure the facial expressions too well because they are covered up in shadows. Take the scene where Oliver and Emerson are talking about what just happened with Queen Industries. I can’t get a full fix on their emotions because their eyes are entirely black. I sense that their conversation is very heated, but I don’t see what they are really feeling in this desperate situation they are in.

It’s one thing to try to take literal the idea of Green Arrow being Batman with a bow and arrow, as Dennis O’Neil once described him as. But when you try to tie the story in with how the character is portrayed in the television series, it’s clear that the results are not going to be pretty. And then there’s this new creative direction that Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino are trying to take readers on. I’m actually not quite sure what they are trying to accomplish. As such, I cannot bring myself to recommend this book. Not even to fans of the television series because even they probably won’t know what is going on.

Do you prefer the Green Arrow of old or the Green Arrow from the television series? Comment below and follow me on Twitter @LordAkiyama.