Green Arrow The Return of Roy Harper Arc Review
This latest arc of Green Arrow was only 3 issues (18,19 & 20) but it was also one hell of a ride. I've said many times that Benjamin Percy has been doing the lord's work on Green Arrow and I will say it many more times. He's given my favorite character good stories again, which has been something that has been missing since way back at the beginning of the new 52, while bringing back the fan favorite romance between him and Black Canary and also building his relationship with sister Emiko. But one thing that has been missing since before the N52 is his relationship with former protege Roy Harper, well wait no more because it's back and with a bang.
I'm gonna try to keep this as spoiler free as possible. The story only runs through 3 issues but a good bit happens in those three issues and we go through 3 different time frames in these issues. I'm gonna cover all three of these time frames separately themselves.
The first thing we get to see is Roy Harper as a child before becoming a sidekick to Oliver. He's grown up on an Indian reservation and has learned to be proficient with a bow being trained by his adopted dad. Of course a good superhero origin isn't complete without a good tragedy and oh boy does one happen. I won't go into spoiler details but what happens forces him to leave the reservation and live off the street which is where he meets our titular hero.
Next we see Roy pickpocket Oliver which results in him taking the boy in where he quickly learns Oliver Queen is the Green Arrow. We learn that Roy is a great tech guy and created a lot of those classic goofy trick arrows that Oliver uses, though our hero doesn't seem to be a big fan of them. But as we all know Roy Harper doesn't come without his vices, and he sure has some. Oliver comes back from out of town early in one particular scene and walks in on a party that the young Roy threw at his place that has plenty of alcohol. Oliver is furious at this and it results in Roy leaving and us learning he has a drug addiction. During this time we get a sub plot with Count Vertigo, who looks ridiculous and awesome, where he tries to take advantage of the young Roy. Both Roy and Oliver fight the villain with Roy gaining the upper hand and taking the villain down. He basically then tells Oliver that he no longer wants anything to do with him and goes out on his own.
Now we get to the main story and also the modern day arc. We get a story that mirrors the Dakota Access Pipeline we've had going on in our own current world. The pipeline is affecting 'yep you guessed it' the reservation that Roy grew up on and whose behind this situation? Yep, Queen Industries. So our two heroes naturally bump into each other while fighting The Wild Dogs, a gang hired by Queen Industries to violently scare off the peaceful Native American protesters. We get some awesome cheesy superhero banter between the two heroes and some kick ass fighting, with the heroes eventually coming out on top with some help from the beautiful Black Canary. The story ends with Roy telling Oliver he wants to help him with his current situation back at home, which just delights me in so many ways.
One thing about this current run is that life hasn't been so smooth for Oliver Queen up to this point, from being betrayed by his company to being betrayed by friends as well. Thankfully things finally start to look slightly better for our hero as this arc ends and the next begins. With a kick ass love interest, badass sister, and former sidekick by his side things can only go up from here