Green Arrow & Black Canary, #2: Family Business
Green Arrow & Black Canary, #3: A League of Their Own

by Judd Winick, Mike Norton (DC Comics, 2009)

The story told in volumes two and three of the young Green Arrow & Black Canary series, Family Business and A League of Their Own, is fine. The problem with these two slim volumes is that they should have been one.

At a scanty 128 pages and a hefty $17.99 cover price, each book should at least provide a complete story about our two newlywed heroes and their friends. But no, this is one story -- divided in two, I can only assume, so DC can make twice as much on sales. For shame, DC!

If they really wanted to make money from Green Arrow and Black Canary fans, the company should release the long-overdue collection of trades from the Mike Grell years. Now that would be a series worth dropping some change for.

This 1-in-2 story by writer Judd Winick and artist Mike Norton is fine. Not outstanding or groundbreaking, but fine. Connor Hawke, Green Arrow's son and protege, has been in a vegetative state since a recent assassination attempt. Now he's been kidnapped, and Green Arrow and Black Canary enlist the aid of sidekick Speedy, the British thief Dodger, and fellow Justice Leaguers Batman and Plastic Man in an attempt to find and save him. (Green Lantern makes a brief appearance, too, but that's mostly for chuckles ... at Green Arrow's expense.)

There are new faces and old in the mix, including an unsatisfying reappearance by the Japanese archer Shado, who has paled since her memorable role in the landmark Longbow Hunters tale of yore. A new set of bad guys doesn't really inspire much fear, particularly when Batman is along for the ride.

For an ongoing series, this story is entertaining. If I hadn't been so irked by DC's moneygrubbing tactic, I might have enjoyed it more.

review by
Tom Knapp

1 August 2009

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