Article written by: Jay Christoph
Today marked the 75th anniversary of the first appearance of our Emerald Archer: The Green Arrow, who’s real name is Oliver Queen of Star City (or sometimes Starling City,) and he has continuously reinvented himself over the decades to not only survive but to thrive in the times past. So, lets read a bit about our beloved bow and arrow enthusiast.
In DC Comics’ latest massive event: Rebirth; Oliver Queen is found living in Seattle with his sister Emiko and meets the Black Canary along the way as he investigates the Ninth Circle. The current Green Arrow series is written by Benjamin Percy and features artist Otto Schmidt.
Green Arrow was created by the wondrous minds of Mort Weisinger and George Papp and made his debut in More Fun Comics’ 73rd issue in 1941. It has been said that Mort Weisinger was inspired by a series of movies called The Green Archer, which were based off a series of books by Edgar Wallace. Weisinger took his newfound idea and created one of the most iconic heroes, borrowing ideas from the Batman series that ran around the same time. The early developmental stages of Green Arrow shows similarities between itself and Batman. Both had similar transportation (a la The Arrow Car and The Batmobile,) both had young sidekicks and were billionaire playboys. Green Arrow and his sidekick Speedy were largely focused on being back up features until they took center stage in the sixties (courtesy of the likes of Denny O’ Neil and Neal Adams and being teamed with the Green Lantern) and grew into beloved fan favorites. Green Arrow became a more mature themed comic for DC Comics in later years, dealing with issues of male rape and drug abuse (which caused a widespread call for abolishment of the drug related issue whose cover featured a young Speedy shooting up.) However, Green Lantern/Green Arrow #5 garnered so much recognition that it even received a letter of praise from John Lindsay, the then mayor of New York City.
The below video shows the magnificent evolution of The Green Arrow over the last seven and a half decades and just how long he has had that damn goatee..