By Judd Winick (writer), Andre Coelho (art), David Baron (colors)
Last issue, Connor, Green Arrow’s son, was nearly killed by a toxic bullet. Superman was able to get him to a hospital in time, but so far the prognosis isn’t good. His mind seems to be gone, but we’re not sure if he’s completely brain dead. All this doesn’t matter to Oliver; he doesn’t leave Connor’s side. He sits in his room every day, reading and talking to him – hoping he’ll come around.
Oliver then goes into confession mode, telling him how bad he treated his son’s mother. Winick shows us what happened first hand. As the issue progresses we witness how much of an awful father Oliver is. Instead of dealing with the fact that he has a new born, he throws money at the problem (the mom), and tells her to never bother him again. We see the inner demons Oliver battles and it’s not pretty.
We look back on the pain Connor’s mom goes through of being a single mother. She has a hard time disciplining him and eventually sends him to a monastery to bring some focus and control in his life. Eventually, it all comes back to Connor and Oliver’s lives crossing and moving to the present. As Oliver sits at his son’s bedside, he vows to make things right – being a father will always come first from now on. This story’s a personal one that many dads and sons will probably be able to relate to.
The latter half of this issue may not resolve Connor’s health issue, but it’ll put a smile on your face. And just when you think things are all rosey, Winick punches you in the gut with a shocking ending. Honestly, I’m not thrilled with how Winick ended this issue, either. Oliver and Dinah have had a lot of crap lately. Couldn’t we have had one happy moment and saved the drama for next issue?
If you’re not reading Green Arrow/Black Canary, you’re missing out on one of the best character driven superhero books around. Misgivings on this issue aside, Judd Winick is writing some of the best work of his career with this series. Regular artist, Cliff Chiang is sorely missed this issue, but Andre Coelho does an admirable job filling in. (Grade: B+)
– J. Montes