Green Arrow #20
The Return of Roy Harper was overall a big letdown from what’s been a superior DC Rebirth title. It just never truly clicked and was the first time where writer Benjamin Percy’s ideas simply didn’t translate to a good and entertaining arc.
For the final chapter, Percy devotes equal time to Roy Harper’s flashbacks and Arsenal, Black Canary and Green Arrow’s efforts to stop an escalating pipeline protest. The current day story is the more entertaining of the two, but Percy struggles to transition from Roy and Ollie sniping at each other to being reluctant partners. A lot of that has to do with the limited space in which to better establish the reconciliation. It feels too quick and cheap rather than an organic fractured hero/sidekick relationship being restored.
It doesn’t help that the flashback sequences are very disappointing. Oliver is made to look like a complete jerk upon learning Roy is an addict. Oliver didn’t look great in the original version of this story, but his convictions were so strong that his extreme reaction was true to the character. Percy doesn’t explore Oliver and Roy’s early days enough to make this seem more than an incredibly selfish way and unheroic way to handle a problem.
Maybe the narrative issues would be easier to overlook if the regular art team was in place, but Eleonora Carlini and Mirka Andolfo aren’t able to provide the necessary visual punch to salvage the story. Carlini did great work on the Batgirl Annual, but her style is a bit too loose for the title. Andolfo covers the flashback sequences. Her art is more of a sketch style, which doesn’t fully convey the proper emotions from the characters.
Sometimes an arc just doesn’t work for whatever reason. That was the case here, but with a return to the overall series’ conflict and artist Juan Ferreyra, I’m optimistic Percy will quickly get the title back on target.
Rating: 6 out of 10