Sunday, July 15, 2007

Year One...

All right, let's start off with the fact that I am an absolute sucker for these stories. Batman: Year One is one of my favorite comic series of all time, followed only shortly by Justice League: Year One.

I like seeing how the heroes I love became who they are. It's what made Ultimate Spider-Man so interesting to me. We all knew Peter Parker in the 616 universe, and how he became Spider-Man. That story was told. But Spidey is fascinating, in part, because of watching the everyman that is Parker become a hero. A fresh take on it was kind of nice.

And I'll admit, I am one of the folks who will usually give any new hero/new comic in the Marvel/DC Universe at least a one-issue try. (Much to my wife's chagrin.)

(We'll ignore that with the fluid time flow of most comics, it is sometimes hard to tell if we've moved beyond a character's year one anyhow.)

Which brings us to this week's Green Arrow: Year One #1. And all I can say is...


I don't want to feel that way. I like Green Arrow, quite a bit - even if I do think he's solidly in the middle of the pack as far as superheroes go. I really enjoyed the "One Year Later" storyline with Olliver becoming mayor of Star City, and his subsequent proposal to Dinah. (Oh, who are we kidding? They may dither about, but she's going to say "yes".)

In that story, they even did a kind of "mini Year One" with his training on the island alongside Connor and Mia. And that was a heck of a cool storyline, I thought.

But this just kind of fell flat on me. Maybe the later issues will do it better for me, but this felt like they were just going through the motions. Yes, Ollie was a worthless dilletente. He liked archery. He was betrayed and left on an island.

We know this part.

But I wanted something more engaging. We knew that Bruce Wayne had his parents killed, went and trained obsessively, came back to Gotham and got the crap kicked out of him, and then decided on the Bat imagery. But even knowing all of that, Miller made Year One incredibly fresh and new.

I felt like I could have told you the dialogue and the imagery that was going to be on each subsequent page. Nowhere was I surprised, or intrigued, or even saying "Oh, that's a neat twist."

I'll give #2 and #3 a try. But if they don't get a LOT better, then I don't see myself making it to the end.

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Blogger Matt said...

I think Miller's Batman Year One story was more engaging because of Jim Gordon. I knew Batman's story and was decently interested in it, but Gordon's Year One story was what made that series such an enjoyable read for me.

Unfortunately for the GA Year One story (which I have yet to pick up), I can't think of another strong main character that can play opposite Ollie/GA in this tale and get the reader more engrossed in Ollie's transformation.

4:57 PM  

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