Green Arrow is a fictional superhero who appears in comic books published by DC Comics. Created by Morton Weisinger and designed by George Papp, he first appeared in More Fun Comics #73 in November 1941. His real name is Oliver Queen, a billionaire businessman and owner of Queen Industries, as well as a well-known celebrity in his locale of Star City. Sometimes shown dressed like Robin Hood, Green Arrow is an archer who uses his skills to fight crime in his home cities of Star City and Seattle, as well as alongside his fellow superheroes as a member of the Justice League. Though much less frequently used in modern stories, he also deploys a range of trick arrows with various special functions, such as glue, explosive-tipped, grappling hook, flash grenade, tear gas and even kryptonite arrows for use in a range of special situations. At the time of his debut, Green Arrow functioned in many ways as an archery-themed analogue of the very popular Batman character, but writers at DC subsequently developed him into a voice of progressivism very much distinct in character from Batman.
Green Arrow enjoyed moderate success in his early years, becoming the cover feature of More Fun, as well as having occasional appearances in other comics. Throughout his first twenty-five years, however, the character never enjoyed greater popularity. In the late 1960s, writer Denny O'Neil, inspired by the character's dramatic visual redesign by Neal Adams, chose to have him lose his fortune, giving him the then-unique role of a streetwise crusader for the working class and the disadvantaged. In 1970, he was paired with a more law and order-oriented hero, Green Lantern, in a ground-breaking, socially conscious comic book series. Since then, he has been popular among comic book fans and most writers have taken an urban, gritty approach to the character. The character was killed off in the 1990s and replaced by a new character, Oliver's son Connor Hawke. Connor, however, proved a less popular character, and the original Oliver Queen character was resurrected in the 2001 "Quiver" storyline, by writer Kevin Smith. In the 2000s, the character has been featured in bigger storylines focusing on Green Arrow and Black Canary, such as the DC event The Green Arrow/Black Canary Wedding and the high-profile Justice League: Cry for Justice storyline, prior to the character's relaunch alongside most of DC's properties in 2011.
Published on 22 Sep 2012
Green Arrow and Speedy first appeared in More Fun Comics #73 (cover-dated November 1941), which was illustrated by artist George Papp. When Mort Weisinger was creating the character, aside from the obvious allusions to Robin Hood, he took inspiration from a movie serial, The Green Archer, based on the novel by Edgar Wallace. He retooled the concept into a superhero archer with obvious Batman influences. These include Green Arrow's sidekick Speedy, his use of an Arrow-Car and Arrow-Plane for transportation, his use of an Arrow-Cave as his headquarters, his alter ego as a billionaire playboy, the use of an Arrow-Signal to summon him, as well as a clown-like arch foe named Bull's Eye, similar to Batman's arch-foe, the Joker.
Another Weisinger-created character, Aquaman, also appeared for the first time in that issue. These two back-up features continued to run concurrently in More Fun Comics until the mid-1940s, as well as then in Adventure Comics between 1946 and 1960. Green Arrow and Speedy also appeared in various issues of World's Finest Comics until issue #140 (1964). The Green Arrow and Speedy feature was one of five back-up features to be promoted in one of the earliest team-up books, Leading Comics.
Green Arrow was one of the few DC characters to keep going after the Golden Age of Comic Books. The longevity of the character was due to the influence of creator Mort Weisinger, who kept Green Arrow and Aquaman as back-up features to the headlining Superboy feature, first in More Fun Comics and then Adventure Comics. Aside from sharing Adventure Comics with him, issue #258 featured an encounter between a younger Oliver Queen and Superboy. The Green Arrow and Speedy feature during this period included a short run in 1958 written by Dick and Dave Wood and drawn by Jack Kirby. For much of this period, Green Arrow's adventures were written by France Herron, who was the character's primary scripter 1947–1963.
Skills and abilities
Oliver Queen is perhaps the finest archer ever known. He claims to be able to shoot 29 arrows per minute (he stated this himself, in the Sound of Violence story arc, when he corrected Black Canary for saying 26). He has a wide-variety of trick arrows, ranging from bola arrows to time-bomb arrows to his infamous boxing-glove arrow. In recent years he has used these arrows sparingly, preferring the time-tested simple arrow. Green Arrow has shown the ability to shoot an arrow down the barrel of a gun, pierce a drop of water as it leaves a tap, as well as shoot almost any part of the human body: although he aims only to wound and not kill when he shoots, except when he considers a situation extreme enough. He once shot two arrows down two different gun barrels while upside down, in mid-flip while somersaulting off a building.
He is proficient in several forms of martial arts including judo, wing chun, taekwondo, as well as eskrima. Proclaimed as a martial arts master, he has shown the ability to take on seven people at once. He spent several months dedicated to making himself a better fighter and trained with many of the world's finest martial arts teachers and even went through training from Natas, the same person who trained Deathstroke. He has displayed, on many occasions, that he is an expert in acrobatics and often uses this skill while evading enemy fire.
Archery is by far Oliver's preferred method of hunting. He is proficient enough in hunting to pursue a cougar without it ever noticing. Oliver is also very proficient with a sword, though it is not his weapon of choice. He has beaten Jason Todd in a swordfight and has deflected an incoming arrow with the sword he carries.
In Golden Age stories, Green Arrow used to own and fly an airplane called the Arrowplane.