[Editor’s note: This review may contain spoilers.]
Writer: Benjamin Percy
Artist: Stephen Byrne
Emiko reflects on her past year with Oliver while trying to save her mother.
The cover by W. Scott Forbes is pretty cool. I love Oliver and Shado being tied together through Shado’s dragon tattoo. It’s definitely a cover I would love to have on my wall.
Stephen Byrne does both the art and the colors. His colors in particular are very strong. He uses a lot of distinct colors to set the mood. Certain flashbacks take place in an antique shop and the art really gives the sense of being in one. A lot of this is due to the coloring, lighting and use of shadows. I hope Byrne gets to finish this story before Otto Schmidt or Juan Ferreyra come back.
The comic has a similar structure to the television show. There is a main plot in the present but a secondary plot in flashbacks both told from Emiko’s point of view. The transitions are done well and I think writer Benjamin Percy does a wonderful job with the structure of the issue. The flashbacks never feel out of place or random. They help the story move along.
Emiko is one of my favorite things to come out of the New 52 so I’m excited to see a story about her that is from her point of view. Percy shows us the stress of being a double agent and what a person will do in order to function. This is done through the inclusion of a classic villain that was a surprise to me so I won’t spoil it. But his plot is very interesting. It deals with the amount of pressure we put on ourselves trying to accomplish as much as we can as well as addiction. I also like that Percy gives a concrete answer on how long it has been in universe since Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino’s story ended.
I love how much Percy appreciates and respects the supporting characters of Green Arrow both new and old. I understand that some people may not like this current story because it’s focusing more on Emi and less on Ollie but I love that. The supporting characters of any series need to be developed too and it’s nice to see Percy do that here with Emi.
Green Arrow continues to be one of the strongest books in Rebirth. Percy has a lot of love for Oliver and history and it shows through his writing. Byrne’s art is really good. This is the start of two cool stories that I am looking forward to reading more of in the future. I definitely recommend checking this issue out.