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Tag Archive: Green Arrow Tv series


DC Comics announced that it will be issuing a softcover trade paperback edition of the first six issues of the New 52 storyline, titled Green Arrow: The Midas Touch.  Since the new CW television series that is currently filming the pilot episode appears that the new Green Arrow may more closely follow the current storyline of Ollie balancing street fighting derring-do with running a major corporation, this is a good time to get caught up on what Oliver Queen has been up to for the past six months.  And this storyline includes its own bit of cyborg villany.

In Chapter 1, “Living a Life of Privilege,” we find Oliver Queen juggling his duties as CEO of Q-Core, apparently a subsidiary of Queen Industries, with his Green Arrow mantle as he busts an odd bunch of thieves in Paris.  He does this by taking a conference call via wireless earbud and also using Q-Core technical resources via techno-savvy assistant Naomi and ex-M.I.T. techno-gadget maker Jax.  Queen is attempting to use the Q-Core division to allow him to continue his crime-fighting life, and Naomi and Jax act as Oracle was utilized by the Birds of Prey.  This chapter echoes Green Arrow’s origins as Batman knockoff and mirrors Bruce Wayne’s past antics a lot–his attempts at using Wayne Enterprises to build him wonderful toys to use in his crime-fighting while dodging his corporate responsibilities at Wayne’s corporate offices.  The action is more “Superfriends” than other incarnations of Green Arrow–his one man march to take out a band of thieves ona  boat with no back-up, for example, is more reckless and unreal than we’ve seen past versions of the character.

In Chapter 2, “Going Viral,” a group of wanna-be twenty-something villains tap into social media and the latest retail technologies to try to “get noticed.”  Oliver and Jax’s relationship seems to match James Bond and Q, as Jax supplies more gadgetry for Queen’s missions.  The wanna-be criminals are in Seattle and have set a trap for Ollie–planning to get Green Arrow streaming live over the Internet in a death match.

This is where the story picks up in Chapter 3, “Green Arrow’s Last Stand,” the leader of the gang, named Rush, takes on Green Arrow mano a mano.  And of course this ends up not as Green Arrow’s last stand but another thwarted attempt at taking Green Arrow out of the picture.  Oliver smartly realizes the kind of headstrong fighting that he made it through in Chapter 1 may have finally caught up with him, and credit goes to writer JT Krul for not letting the early path for Oliver get too far off-track.  CEO of parent company Queen Industries “Emerson” busts Oliver’s chops for not paying attention to the business despite Queen giving a public “Jerry Maguire” speech.  Emerson either has some secret vendetta, or really just doesn’t like Queen’s apparent lack of devotion to the company that Oliver’s father founded.  One oddity is that the end of Chapter 2 foretold a visit from Black Canary in Chapter 3 that never comes to fruition.

In Chapter 4, “The Things We Do for Love and Hate,” we meet female assassin Blood Rose, who is an agent for some boss named Midas.  The bulk of the issue is a face-off between Oliver and the new villain, Blood Rose succeeding with her guns and quick moves and Ollie with his trick arrows.  This is mirrored in Chapter 5, “The Midas Touch,” when a walking “toxic dump” that is devoted to Blood Rose takes the fight directly to Oliver Queen.  Again, the issue is primarily a fight to the death, and only this time there is a winner and a loser.  Blood Rose shows up, but again, Ollie and his wireless crime-fighting back-up team of Naomi and Jax, and we readers, have been left with no answers and little clues to go on.  It is worth mentioning that JT Krul left writing duties on the Green Arrow series with Issue #3 (Chapter 3 of the new TPB) and Keith Giffen took over for the rest of the issues/chapters.

Which brings us to the final chapter of this first Green Arrow storyline in the new DCU.  Titled “Lovers & Other Dangers,” we learn what is behind the titles about love in Chapters 4 and 6.  It begins with Blood Rose shooting Oliver is the head–a surface wound only, but enough to knock him out.  The rest of the story takes us into a strange mix of beauty and the beast with a dose of borg elements.

As a complete story in 144 pages, Green Arrow: The Midas Touch is not a stand-out story.  It seems to suffer from a lack of focus that only comes together in the last three parts, and even then, leaves us uncertain as to Green Arrow’s new place in the DCU.  The only thing keeping it together as one complete work is Dan Jurgens’ art, and this would not be considered his best work.  With so many great titles making their mark in the New 52, the decison makers at DC Comics will have to carve out a niche for this character soon to avoid losing readers.  With compilations for other titles not yet announced, there are certainly other titles more worthy of a trade paperback edition.  Green Arrow: The Midas Touch will likely be a purchase only for the Green Arrow completist.

The trade edition will be published in May and is available for pre-order at online online retailers.

C.J. Bunce

Editor

borg.com

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CW Network released the title for the new Warner Brothers TV series featuring Green Arrow yesterday, Arrow.  And the network released the first casting decision for the show–30-year old Canadian TV actor Stephen Amell will portray the lead role of Oliver Queen aka the urban archer superhero Green Arrow.  The new TV series will be directed by David Nutter with script by Andrew Kreisberg, Greg Berlanti and Marc Guggenheim.  We offered a few suggestions to the writing team here a few days ago when the series was announced.

The look from last year's Brightest Day mini-series wouldn't be so bad

Amell has had roles on several TV series: New Girl, Hung, 90210 (2011), Vampire Diaries, Heartland, Beautiful People, and Queer as Folk.  As long as he is sporting the goatee it seems like he could at least look the part.  And he has played a gigolo on Hung, which no doubt plays into Oliver’s ladies’ man status.

Along with the characters you’d expect, a variety of websites have posted the casting type-list for the series, and at the quick pace the series is coming together we can probably expect more cast members to be announced soon:

OLIVER QUEEN
A 27 year old reformed bad boy, who after having spent five years shipwrecked on a tiny, brutally dangerous island in the South China Sea returns to town a different man. Or to be more specific, a tortured, thoughtful master of the bow with a ferocious determination to make a difference.

DINAH “LAUREL” LANCE
28 years old, smart sexy, Laurel is a legal aid attorney determined to use her life as a one-woman war against the 1% following the death of her younger sister Sara. A sister, who as luck would have it, just so happened to have died aboard Oliver’s yacht.

Will the CW give Amell the energetic Cliff Chiang Green Arrow look?

TOMMY MERLYN
28 years old and devil-smooth, Tommy is a trustafarian like Oliver, a spectacularly rich young man whose life revolves around parties, clubs, liquor and lots of anonymous sex. Unlike Oliver, he can’t seem to understand his former best friend’s sudden change of lifestyle and direction.

MOIRA QUEEN
48 years old, a beautiful woman, Oliver’s mother Moira is a very wealthy woman who is not used to being shaken. Having remarried during the five years that former husband Robert and Oliver were both presumed dead, Moira has had free rein over the Queen billions. Not surprisingly, she’s deeply interested in learning whether or not Robert will also return unexpectedly, to ruin her present marriage and go over the books with a fine-tooth comb.

Will CW give Amell the cool Mauro Cascioli Green Arrow look?

JOHN DIGGLE
35 years old, African-American, Diggle is really, really big, a former military man who served with the Army Rangers in Afghanistan, and has been a bodyguard for hire for the last four years. Hired by Moira to be Oliver’s chauffeur and protector, Diggle soon finds he is trapped in a battle of wits, as Oliver repeatedly eludes his protection. But in fact, Diggle’s primary conflict is one of loyalty — he has to show that he’s working for Oliver, not Moira, before Oliver will give him a smidgen of trust.

THEA QUEEN
17 years old (suggest 17-22 years), Oliver’s Lolita-esque sister, Thea was a 12 year old girl when he went on his infamous yachting voyage — but now she’s a celebutante who’s testing the boundaries of acceptable behavior. Thea loved her big brother with all her heart, and is delighted to have him back in her life — but she’s spreading her wings, and is unprepared for Oliver to become the Bad Cop in the family, restricting her access to boys and drugs.

Actor Amell does have that cheesy Ollie smile

Definitely a lot of changes to past storylines, the series appears to be toying with the classic origin story and other than Oliver and Dinah, adding an entirely new character subset.  The biggest missing character is Hal Jordan aka Green Lantern.

No doubt we'll see Oliver's origin story as part of the series or in flashback, like that seen in artist Jock's Green Arrow: Year One

As a CW production we can probably expect a fair amount of the teen primetime soap formula, but hopefully it will more of the Veronica Mars variety as opposed to the 90210 variety.  I’m starting to get a bad vibe like this will be another show like ABC’s Revenge, spoiled rich kids acting…spoiled.

But we’ll reserve judgment til we actually see the pilot.  And we can hardly wait!

Read tons more about our favorite superhero, Green Arrow, here.

C.J. Bunce

Editor

borg.com

What better way to celebrate borg.com’s 100,000th site visit than share some news about one of our favorite superheroes?  Hollywood writer Jason McClain alerted me to this news item, as it’s no secret I’m one of the biggest Green Arrow fans around.  The news?

The CW Network has ordered a TV series pilot featuring Green Arrow that will, happily, not be related to the Smallville series’ spin on the character.  The producer/writers tapped to create the pilot are Greg Berlanti and Marc Guggenheim, the two writers responsible for last year’s Green Lantern movie, and ex-writer for the Green Arrow/Black Canary comic book series, Andrew Kreisberg.

Kreisberg took over the comic book series after Judd Winick moved off the GA/BC title.  He teamed with artist Mike Norton after Cliff Chiang left the series.  I have read Kreisberg’s take on Green Arrow and Black Canary, and I liked it.  Kreisberg wrote some good modern stories featuring the trio in both a lighthearted and action-packed way.  He clearly knows the roots of these characters and their strong relationships with each other, and hopefully he can convey that into the script for the pilot and get it onto the small screen.  He also once acknowledged that there is no other superhero team out there that is a married couple, that that IS Green Arrow’s story.  Right on!

Here are some unsolicited recommendations for Kreisberg, Berlanti and Guggenheim to make the series get off the ground right:

(1)  You might view your TV show as an ensemble show like Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  An ensemble genre work usually is better than a solo character-focused show (think about the failed series The Cape and why it didn’t work, for example) because although we all loved the title character of Buffy Summers, we loved supporting characters Willow and Xander even more.  And like the best Batman stories, letting the lead hero take the back seat once in a while is a good thing.  At the same time, I didn’t watch Smallville because Clark never donned the supersuit.  Show Green Arrow in action with the bow once in a while, but just not in every scene.

(2)  Take the best of the Green Arrow canon and it will easily translate to today.  The “Hard Traveling Heroes” storyline that put both Green Arrow and Green Lantern on the map and made us want to know more about these characters was a road trip across America.  Something like the Winchester boys moving across country with every new episode in Supernatural.  You might laugh, but On the Road with Charles Kuralt, the CBS segment where he took an off-the-beaten path tour of America, lasted decades for a reason.  Viewers liked to see where he would go next.  You’ll have an unlimited number of settings for your story, too, if you keep the team moving, assuming they let you work with all three characters.

The Kid, Etta, and Butch--archetype for Ollie, Dinah, and Hal

(3)  Everyone likes a good “buddy picture.”  I have mentioned before how the “Hard Traveling Heroes” storyline reflected the 1969 world view, and 1969 entertainment.  Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid came out in 1969 and was still in theaters when Denny O’Neil wrote the classic Green Arrow and Green Lantern crossover.  Did some of the hit movie rub off on O’Neil?  Who knows.  If you pay attention, you’ll see that Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid is a buddy picture with three buddies, almost a “love triangle,” including some brotherly love between Butch and Ross’s character Etta Place.  That’s right, Katherine Ross’s role as the Kid’s girlfriend, and Butch’s pal, was as important to the film as each of the title characters.  Black Canary/Dinah Lance could have that same crucial role in a TV series about Ollie and Hal.

(4)  Even if Warner Brothers wants to keep Hal Jordan/Green Lantern out of the series, you must include Black Canary/Dinah Lance.  Don’t botch this by pulling ideas from the Dinah Lance of the short-lived Birds of Prey series.  It was good for what it was.  But you want dark-haired Dinah that sports the blonde wig used to go incognito, not the stilted friend of Oracle.  Green Arrow/Oliver Queen can go solo from time to time, but only when he can return to Dinah is he at his best.

(5)  Stay away from the DC 52 Green Arrow storyline and the obvious idea of having Oliver participate in some form of anti-big business Occupy Wall Street movement.  Sure, in real life, Ollie would be leading up the OWS marches, but I think most viewers don’t want a show about superheroes in current politics and as much as everyone hates greedy corporate America, more personal storylines will appeal to modern viewers.   The current series Leverage does this very well.  Think local.  Don’t have Ollie take on all of the world’s problems, have him take on each human problem bit by bit, maybe town by town.  It worked brilliantly for Adams and O’Neil.

Original Mike Norton art from a story under Kreisberg's turn as writer for Green Arrow/Black Canary

(6)  Oliver Queen is not Bruce Wayne.  He’s much more layered.  Queen is not a billionaire.  He lost all his money, and that allowed him to get interesting.  Don’t even waste time on his backstory as billionaire as it will only emphasize his role as a one-time obvious Batman knockoff.

(7)  Read up on your Mike Grell era of Green Arrow stories.  Grell was an ex-government intelligence guy who ended up writing spy novels and comic books.  He took the Neal Adams/Denny O’Neil Green Arrow and Black Canary and brought them into downtown Seattle and injected the backwoods survival skills and mixed it with street smarts.  He made Ollie the Urban Warrior.  This itself harkened back to the iconic Green Lantern Issue #76’s story whereby Green Arrow first takes on a greedy slumlord that Hal Jordan was unintentionally actually helping.

Personal sketch of Ollie and Dinah by Mike Grell

(8)  We know from past interviews that Andrew Kreisberg likes the role of Green Arrow and Black Canary as Oliver and Dinah–husband and wife.  Consider building on Mike Grell’s series, where they run the Sherwood Florist in Seattle by day.  And what the heck, work in Mia and Connor if you can.  And if you must update costumes, you gotta bring back Ollie’s goatee.  As Mikel Janin proved with his excellent recent update to similarly costumed Zatanna, Dinah’s fishnets can be optional.

(9)  The Flash TV series had a lot going for it.  One was the age of the actor in the lead roll, John Wesley Shipp, former soap actor.  He wasn’t 20-something.  He was 35 and looked like he could be a superhero in real life.  If you’re staying away from Smallville (a great move) then give us heroes who have had time to gain some wisdom, not some newbies who have no way of practically knowing all they would need to know in real life to get through their trials on the show (the TV series Bones is a big example of this glaring absurdity with its only-young cast that has knowledge you could only gain by being twice the age of the cast members).  Look for actors in their 30s or or even early 40s.

(10)  Suggested title?  If you take any of the ideas above, how about Hard Traveling, Hard Traveling Hero, or Hard Traveling Heroes?  Of course there are always other former storyline titles like Quiver.

I have no idea what limitations will be placed on Kreisberg & Co. as they work out the script for the TV series pilot.  Maybe they have no intention of including Hal and Dinah, but if they can, it could be something new and different and very fun.

If you want to see Andrew Kreisberg’s stories while writing for Ollie and Dinah, you can buy compilations, including: Green Arrow/Black Canary: Enemies List, Green Arrow/Black Canary: Big Game, and Green Arrow/Black Canary: Five Stages.

And Andrew, if you need help with story ideas, drop me a line.

C.J. Bunce

Editor

borg.com