Well, he thinks so. His security chief, Roy Harper, isn’t so sure. He thinks Ollie has lost his way and that Green Arrow Industries – named for the firm’s most devastating missile – should stand for something better. He suggests the company fights for the common man, inspires trust.
In this Flashpoint one-shot there’s no super-heroic Green Arrow. Only dashing Ollie Queen, a businessman who’s hit on the idea of using tech confiscated from super-villains, developing it into even more terrifying weapons and selling it on to governments. Nice guy.
A second later, Roy is dead, killed by a group with a grudge. The generals are dead too, leaving Ollie alone to face a young female who wants his blood. Armed with weapons from the Trickster, Rainbow Raider, Mirror Master, Top and Mr Element, he … doesn’t do that well, actually. He only just beats the girl, in the process learning that the mass killing is intended to focus world attention on Green Arrow Industries. It turns out that before Ollie bought ‘Green Arrow Island’, the villains’ weapons were stored around the US, making communities the targets for seriously mad bad guys out to grab back their equipment. Ollie, wrapped up in the race to build a better bomb, has no idea of the harm his programme has caused. Or that he really should recognise his foe.
By the end of this one-shot, Ollie’s had an epiphany – Roy’s – and learned a lesson in personal responsibility. If Ollie turns up in other Flashpoint books as the Green Arrow we see on Viktor Kalvachev’s excellent cover, I’ll be very happy. Because this guy’s more interesting than the regular DC Universe Ollie, who’s carrying baggage bigger than any quiver. That guy’s damaged goods, this one is – well, he’s pretty much early Tony Stark, but he’s turning a road.
So well done Pornsak Pichetshote for a snappy script that accomplishes a fair amount in just 20 pages, sketching in a good character study against the background of the world of Flashpoint.
Most of the book is pencilled by the exemplary Ig Guara, with Marco Castiello handling the first five pages. The only misstep is Roy’s death scene, which is depicted terribly clunkily. One moment he’s chatting, the next he’s on the floor with an arrow in his throat – OK, space is tight, so show us the missile piercing Roy, not the aftermath of the death blow. It’s a surprisingly poor show in a comic book with veteran editor Joey Cavalieri’s name on it.
Inkers Vincenzo Acunzo and Ruy Jose provide good finishes, while Stefani Rennee’s colours are lushly effective. Good lettering, too, from Carlos Mangual.
I had low expectations for this one, given my strong dislike of Ollie these past few years, but I enjoyed Green Arrow Industries a fair bit. It’s nice to be surprised.