Saturday, February 29, 2020

Leaping Into Superman's Birthday

Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound.....

...and possessing a birthday on the date of February 29th....the day added to the calendar in a leap year... Superman!

(The above for the 50th Anniversary of Superman for Time Magazine, by John Byrne and Jerry Ordway).

Superman has celebrated his birthday in comics a few times, once at his Fortress of Solitude with a little mystery in Action Comics #241 (June, 1958).   Later, at the same location, with Batman, Robin and Wonder Woman, with Mongul crashing the party in Superman Annual #11 (November, 1980).

But, where is Clark?  

When is his birthday?

Well, those facts are here.....

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Two Face Plus Two Origins Grodd and Doctor Light

Secret origins were all the rage in comics for a time....and finding out here to now unknown facts on characters was an interesting idea.

So, when DC Super-Stars #14 (May-June, 1977) rolled around, here was a chance to explore the beginnings of two villains, Gorilla Grodd and Doctor Light, (but with different heroes helping them get their start as shown on this Jim Aparo cover), as well as the origins of the master of duality.....Two-Face!

But, there are dangers with this as well....

G -- As In Guardians, Green Lantern And Gorilla Grodd

First, a story where the Guardians of the Universe revealed unknown facts to the Green Lantern of Sector 2814 (Hal Jordan), about one of his early cases, in a story by Bob Rozakis, Rich Buckler and Bob Layton

Here, it was suggested that it was Green Lantern that, unknowingly, brought Gorilla Grodd, Solovar and the rest of Gorilla City to Earth, as an extension of one of his missions to the planet of Calor in Green Lantern #1 (July-August, 1960).

Nice idea, but impractical, as around this time, Flash was first encountering the Trickster in his own magazine, having encountered Grodd a while ago (and Flash and Green Lantern were co-founders of the JLA before this as well, with Flash encountering Grodd before the JLA formed).

A later telling of the origin in Secret Origins #40 (May,1989) by Cary Bates, Greg Weisman, Carmine Infantino and Mike DeCarlo, had the gorillas here on Earth mutated in the later 1800s by a meteor that crashed to Earth, and constructed a device to shield their city from outsiders after an encounter with some explorers (until Barry Allen stumbled upon the city later).

Double Take

The second story of the issue, by Jack C. Harris, Ed Davis and Josef Rubinstein, was an interesting exploration of the origins of Two-Face, looking at the career of District Attorney Harvey Dent, and how he worked with detective David Davis to take down Boss Moroni and the corruption of Gotham.  Dent learned that Maroni was really aiming for the detective when Dent was hit by Maroni's throw acid in the courtroom (the tragedy that led to Dent becoming Two-Face).  Oddly, his time as Two-Face served him well, as his two-sided coin deflected a bullet that would have killed him (and, as chance would have it, deflected into Maroni).

Consistent with his usual origins, but oddly lacking Batman in this tale (though slightly tied to his appearances in Teen Titans with his "daughter", the Joker's Daughter/Harlequin...a crazed bit of continuity confusion herself!).

Secret Origins Special #1 (1989) by Mark Verheiden, Pat Broderick and Dick Giordano, explored Harvey's relationship with his wife, his becoming district attorney and working with Batman, and tragic turn into Two-Face (yet that he still loved his wife, Grace - called Gilda, pre-Crisis, as he had recently saved her as Two-Face from Dalton Perry, a criminal Dent had put away in jail).

Let There Be Dr. Light

Last, but not least, is the story of Arthur Light, by Paul Kupperberg, Dick Ayers and Jack Abel, where Light invented a device that allowed him to transport to another planet, in this case, Thanagar, where he was able to steal technology that was based on light, which he used to fashion his villain identity of Dr. Light (imagination was not his strong point).  Dr. Light fought a young Thanagarian officer on his supposed first trip to Earth, Katar Hol, though he did not get the light devices back, so Dr. Light was still able to become a menace to the JLA, including Green Arrow, as well as the Teen Titans.

Problem arose with this story as well, as Katar Hol wasn't as available to be that Thanagarian police rookie (checking his extended origins in Brave and the Bold), and before the Crisis, the origin was amended to be "a Thanagarian police officer" who faced Dr. Light.

Secret Origins #37 (February, 1989) by Craig Boldman, Mike Parobeck and Ken Branch pull a Dr. Light of their own, stealing a thought from that past origin (but add to it and change it).  Arthur worked at S.T.A.R. Labs, but was a failure, until he stole the light costume from scientist Jacob Farley, who invented the costume to be a hero like the JLA, but died before he got a chance to.

The DC Super Stars issue also contained on page summaries (with earlier art) on Brainiac and the Shark...and provide an interesting look at the thoughts of creators in the 1970s, trying to link various heroes and villains (and serve as a nice example now, of some of the differences between the DC Universe, from pre-Crisis to after the Crisis On Infinite Earths!).

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Shazam Super Spectacular 1

In what would have been DC 100 Page Super Spectacular #23 from editor E. Nelson Bridwell, Shazam! #8 (December, 1973) hit newsstands like a bolt out of the blue.....

....containing what was an incredible collection of the adventures of Captain Marvel and the rest of the Marvel Family from their golden years of Fawcett Comics.

Here's what was in the issue, under an original cover by Cap's co-creator, C.C. Beck.

A Twice Told Tale

Sivana has a plan in Captain Marvel Adventures #80 (January, 1948) by Otto Binder and C.C. Beck, that is, to go back in time to prevent Billy Batson from ever becoming Captain Marvel.  So, he invents time travel pills, and takes one just as Captain Marvel comes into his current lab....only Sivana forgot one thing, that, if he was changing time, he'd not know why he was going into the past.  Forgetting that, Billy's meeting with the wizard Shazam went as it usually did, with the lad becoming Captain Marvel!

Introduces Mary Marvel

This time around, Otto Binder and Marc Swayze give the story from Captain Marvel Adventures #18 (December 11, 1942) where Billy finds his unknown twin sister, Mary, and from nurse Sarah Primm, learns that she had been switched out for another family's dead daughter.  Meeting Mary Bromfield at the Mental Marvel Quiz Show, the young rich girl does well, and ends up kidnapped for ransom.  Billy and Freddy get captured and gagged, but Mary tries saying "Shazam" and gets a heroic identity of her own (as later revealed, as the old Wizard had planned). 

The Mighty Marvels Join Forces

Cap, Mary and Jr. form a Marvel Family, but they meet a distant relative in Marvel Family #1 (December, 1945) by Otto Binder and C.C. Beck, in a previous recipient of Shazam's power, Black Adam.  Teth-Adam had been granted the power as Mighty Adam in the days of ancient Egypt, but used it to take control, and was banished to the farthest star by Shazam.  Now called Black Adam, this evil Marvel returned, but was stopped by the quick mind of Uncle Marvel!

The Vest Pocket Levitator

A mischievous gremlin empowers the items of a street vendor in  Captain Marvel, Jr. #14 (December, 1943) by artist Mac Raboy, causing trouble for Captain Marvel Jr..  Jonas Weatherby gets the ability to fly with an egg-beater (!!!), and uses it to rob a bank.  But, Freddy Freeman's alter ego tracks the man down, and convinces him the error of his ways, that you can't steal from others to enrich yourself.

The Dog-Nappers

Poor Mrs. Upcreek comes to Shazam Inc. to find someone to get her missing dog, Brutus, in Mary Marvel #17 (October, 1947) by Otto Binder and Jack Binder.  Mary and Uncle Dudley quickly get on the case, stopping a group of dog-nappers via Uncle Marvel's usual misfires (and Mary Marvel's timely interventions), but....have no luck finding Brutus....until Uncle Marvel gets a biting pain reporting back to Mrs. Upcreek!

The Adventure In Time

Billy Batson finds an impossible adventure for Captain Marvel in Captain Marvel Adventures #71 (April, 1947) by Otto Binder, C.C. Beck and Pete Costanza....that of having to be in four parts of the Earth at the same time.  Thankfully, the Lt. Marvels are around, and Fat Marvel, Hill Marvel and Tall Marvel can take three of the assignments as Billy takes the fourth as Captain Marvel. Of course, that just means Sivana has to figure out a way to cause problems at the same time as well...

The Talking Tiger

An old hermit talks to a tiger, and he talks back in Captain Marvel Adventures #79 (December, 1947) by Otto Binder and C.C. Beck.  The tiger leaves the hermit behind to try out civilization, but runs across Captain Marvel, who thinks he's a wild animal on the loose.  Still, the tiger persists, and eventually gets clothes and a chance to talk to Cap, who then finds the tiger a job so he can be a productive member of civilization.

The Return Of Mr. Tawny

The tiger gets a name, that of Mr. Tawny in Captain Marvel Adventures #82 (March, 1948) by Otto Binder and C.C. Beck.  Better still, Billy befriends the tiger, and learns of his origin (just in time, as the boy who saved the tiger's life in Africa, and got him to the old hermit who gave him the formula to talk; Tom Todd, was framed for murder, just as Mr. Tawny was years ago).  Captain Marvel and Mr. Tawny had to work extra hard to find the real killer.

A super collection of Captain Marvel Golden Age Fawcett goodness (with history of Shazam and his Marvel Family, Tawky Tawny, Black Adam and more)....enough to start what would be a nice run of reprints in Shazam!, though the others would also feature new stories as well!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Happy Valentine's Day Betty And Veronica

An appropriate cover for a cold Valentine's Archie does double duty with Betty and Veronica in this cover from Archie's Girls Betty & Veronica #243 (March, 1976), where young Mr. Andrews takes advantage of the snow for a little Valentine's Day message for Betty Cooper in this cover by Dan DeCarlo!

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

JLA JSA Sixth Multiple Crisis

A last look at the collection of JLA/JSA team ups, and it is a big one!

True, it is only two team-ups of the teams, but each of them carry over more than two issues, and involve more than just the Justice League of America and Justice Society of America.

Here's a look at the special meetings....

Targets On Two Worlds

Justice League of America #195 (October, 1981) by Gerry Conway, George Perez and John Beatty starts with Brainwave recruiting villains (Killer Frost, Signalman, Cheetah and Floronic Man) from Earth-1, and Monocle, Psycho-Pirate, Rag Doll and the Mist gotten by the leader of this new Secret Society of Super-Villains....the Ultra-Humanite (one of the Golden Age Superman's very first villains).

After Brainwave brings the four to his home Earth and the Ultra-Humanite's headquarters, that villain explains his plan....that, if 10 heroes from the JLA and JSA can be sent to limbo, either Earth-1 or Earth-2 will lose all its heroes as the cosmic balance readjusts itself!

Meanwhile, at the JLA Satellite on Earth-1, the JLA (missing only Martian Manhunter for a complete membership) and JSA have an uneventful party, even with Green Arrow there (he had quit recently, but came to see friends...and Black Canary).  Black Canary was the last on the satellite, when a sudden hum....brought her foe, the Mist, who defeats her.  Monocle defeats the Earth-2 Hawkman at home, and Cheetah defeats the Earth-1 Wonder Woman, and the villains all report back to Ultra-Humanite of their success (as the body-switching villains dwells on his real plan....that he knows which heroes will be eliminated...those of Earth-2!).

Lots of JSAers only in this issue, most from the last JLA/JSA team-up, but Superman and Robin came from World's Finest Comics #271, Hourman and Atom came from their solo features in the Whatever Happened To...? back-ups in DC Comics Presents, and Power Girl and Huntress came from Huntress' back-up in Wonder Woman.  Sandman, Spectre, Dr. Mid-Nite, Starman, Wonder Woman of E-2, Wildcat and Star-Spangled Kid did not attend.

Bonus:  the George Perez JLA/JSA pin-up!

Countdown To Crisis

The Ultra-Humanite imprisons the first three heroes and summarizes his plan to start Justice League of America #196 (November, 1981) by Gerry Conway, George Perez and Romeo Tanghal.

Then, the plans continue, with Psycho-Pirate taking Hourman on E-2, Signalman taking Batman on E-1, Rag Doll getting the Flash on Earth-2, Floronic Man besting Atom on Earth-1, Brainwave besting Johnny Thunder and his Thunderbolt on E-2, Killer Frost capturing Firestorm on E-1, and the original Superman confronting his now simian bodied Ultra-Humanite, and losing on E-2.

The villains place the 10 heroes in Ultra-Humanite's special cells, and transport it to limbo......

Crisis In Limbo

With Justice League of America #197 (December, 1981)  by Gerry Conway, George Perez, Keith Pollard and Romeo Tanghal (and cover by George Perez and Mike DeCarlo), the heroes end up in limbo....and the Earth-2 villains rejoice as their reality warps, losing their heroes....and the Earth-1 villains realize they were set up (that the Ultra-Humanite knew what would happen).  Ultra-Humanite sends them back to Earth-1, so his villains can now plunder their heroless world.

Killer Frost, Signalman, Cheetah and Floronic Man find Green Lantern on Earth-1, defeat him, and take the transporter tube to the JLA Satellite, defeating Elongated Man there....and then use the JLA's Transmatter Machine to go to limbo to free all 10 heroes....who then go to Earth-2, and toss the Earth-2 villains all into limbo as well (and, when they return to reality, Earth-2 gets its heroes back).

Flash Jay Garrick (along with Dr. Fate) show up next in Flash #305, the Golden Age Superman is next in DC Comics Presents Annual #1, the Earth-2 Hawkman is next in Wonder Woman #291, and Hourman and Johnny Thunder show up next in the JLA/JSA team-up after the next one, with the Earth-2 villains all showing up next to accidentally help form Infinity, Inc.

Crisis Times Three

The JSA (Dr. Fate, Green Lantern, Starman, Power Girl and Huntress) is coming to the JLA Satellite in Justice League of America #207 (October, 1982) by Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas, Don Heck and Romeo Tanghal (with cover by George Perez), except they don't quite make it, with Superman, Aquaman, Hawkman, Zatanna and Firestorm meeting the Crime Syndicate of America!

The JSA found themselves in the limbo prison that the CSA was in, while Power Ring, Johnny Quick, Ultraman, Owlman and Superwoman fight the JLA, and leave the JLA Satellite.  The JSA break free from their extradimensional prison, but end up on an Earth-Prime destroyed by nuclear war!  The JLA use their Transmatter Machine to go to Earth-2, to find the JSA HQ unused since January of 1942....and Earth-2 now ruled by Per Degaton.  So, they go back in time to the JSA's HQ in January of 1942....and meet...the All-Star Squadron?

Head down to the All-Star Squadron issue for a little back story.....  

The 'Mystery Men' Of October

All-Star Squadron #14 (October, 1982) by Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, Adrian Gonzales and Jerry Ordway (cover by Joe Kubert), starts with Per Degaton ordering the members of the World War II hero group, the All-Star Squadron to kill each other....but, this was just another dream of Per Degaton's....which was enough to revive his memories of his previous time travels, and start trouble again.

This time, he ends up in limbo and finds the Crime Syndicate of America (from Earth-3), frees them, has them take Cuban nuclear missiles from Earth-Prime's 1962 Cuba (during the Cuban crisis), then sends them to replace the JSA during their transmission from Earth-2 in 1982.

Meanwhile, All-Star Squadron members Johnny Quick, Liberty Belle, Commander Steel, Robotman and Firebrand fight Nuclear (an Earth-2 Wonder Woman foe) in front of the JSA Brownstone, but he escapes.  The heroes go inside to find...the five JLAers!

The Bomb-Blast Heard 'Round The World

The JLA and All-Star Squadron have a quick fight to start Justice League of America #208 (November, 1982) by Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas, Don Heck and Sal Trapani (cover by George Perez).  The teams realize the are both heroes, the JLA catches the All-Stars up, and both teams head to meet FDR at the White House....where Per Degaton had delivered a VCR and TV....where he recorded his plan, that he wants total world control or he will use his atomic bombs (taken from 1962 Cuba) to destroy the world (Hitler and Churchill also got a tape and TV).  Meanwhile, on Earth-Prime, the JSA fight mutated men, and find out that Kennedy and Khrushchev had World War III, because of the implausible story super humans had taken Cuba's hidden nuclear missiles (Earth-Prime had no super heroes in the 1960s).  The JLA and All-Stars watch Degaton launch one missile as proof (with the JSAers showing up right before the blast)...and Degaton feels that at least the Allies will surrender to him to save the world!

Master Of Worlds And Time

The JSAers explain they followed Per Degaton's trail back to January, 1942 in All-Star Squadron #15 (November, 1982) by Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, Adrian Gonzales and Jerry Ordway (with Joe Kubert cover).  The heroes head to the White House, and Per Degaton again broadcasts, telling President Roosevelt and the world's leaders, of his orbital stations that will launch the nuclear missiles.  The heroes split into teams, with Superman, Dr. Fate and Robotman facing Ultraman at a satellite, finding three missile sites of Degaton; Aquaman, Starman and Liberty Belle facing Superwoman on a Pacific Island launch pad; Hawkman, Huntress and the All-Stars Johnny Quick face Power Ring in the Midwestern United States...then Degaton boasting the heroes will not find the last site as we head into.....

Let Old Acquaintances Be Forgot...

The last of the team-up, with Justice League of America #209 (December, 1982) by Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas and Don Heck (with cover by George Perez), with the first three teams returning to brief FDR.  Then, Firestorm, Power Girl and Commander Steel are arriving in Geneva, Switzerland, to fight the CSA's Johnny Quick, stopping his missile.  The heroes, successful, go to find Per Degaton and stop him (hidden under the future site of the Pentagon), while Zatanna, Green Lantern and Firebrand travel to Earth-Prime in 1962, stopping the Crime Syndicate from even taking the Cuban missiles, and resetting time....resulting in everyone going back to where this all started, and the 5 JSAers coming over from Earth-2 to meet most of the JLA in their satellite, with Per Degaton going back to washing test tubes in Prof. Zee's time lab again (as he did every time that time reset....).

The JSA would show up next in the first issue of Infinity, Huntress continued her back-ups in Wonder Woman.

Big team-ups here for the last of the volumes that DC put out of the Crisis On Multiple Earths (Volume 6), with changes in the world started on one Earth, and major history changes involving heroes and villains from four worlds show how much bigger the Crisis would become, all from the time the first Flashes met, to the first JLA/JSA team-up, and even Legion's future and the past...and so much more.

Still, there are a few JLA/JSA stories that didn't get collected, and more than a few solo meetings of multiple Flashes, multiple Green Lanterns, multiple Supermen and more....and check back as the tale of the last JLA/JSA team ups will be told!

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Holy Bill Finger, Batman!

Remembering the late Bill Finger on his birthday (February 8, 1914 - January 18, 1974).

Bill Finger was a writer, who provided many of the inspirational ideas to Bob Kane's outline of Batman that helped make Batman a the cowl, cape, gloves, the blue/grey color scheme, and even the Bruce Wayne name!

Unfortunately, his penchant for research did not make Bill Finger a quick writer, nor did Bob Kane have him included on creator credits for Batman (only noting his contributions after Bill Finger had passed).

Still, Bill Finger did write many important Batman stories, introducing Robin, Joker, Catwoman, Riddler, Penguin and Two-Face, as well as the Batmobile, Batcave...

...and even naming Gotham City!

Much later, Bill Finger introduced readers to Ace the Bat-Hound, Bat-Mite , the first Bat-Girl, Calendar Man, the second Clayface , even Kite-Man and Zebra Man, and gave Batman his two biggest trophies:  the Tyrannosaurus Rex and giant Lincoln penny (a hallmark of Bill Finger stories was battles on oversized items).

Bill Finger also did other work for DC, writing early issues featuring the Golden Age Green Lantern, Wildcat, and creating Lana Lang in Superboy. Some of his last work on Batman was in World's Finest Comics, working with Superman (there he created Moon Man and Atom-Master, among others).

Even better, Bill Finger wrote the two episodes of the second season of the Batman 1966 TV show featuring the Clock King, giving him his first writer's credit on a Batman story....and the TV show Gotham, got his name listed as co-creator of Batman!

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Flash Facts: The Last Crossover

Seems a good enough time to pull out the last Flash crossover that Barry Allen and Jay Garrick would have before the Crisis on Infinite Earths....

....and it sure looks like it was going to spell doom for Jay's wife Joan!

Let's see how this event played out in this meeting of the greatest Flashes of Earth-1 and Earth-2 in Flash #305 (January, 1982), by Cary Bates, Carmine Infantino and Robert Allen Smith (with cover by Carmine Infantino and Mike DeCarlo)!

Don't Take My Wife -- Please!

The tale started on Earth-2, where Joan Garrick was sleeping at home while her Flash, Jay Garrick was patrolling Keystone City....and she was taken by a mysterious force.  Meanwhile, on Earth-1, relatively recently widowed Barry Allen was dreaming about Joan (not like that...but a dream where she was running on a cliff....then falling to her death; leading Barry to feel worried Jay would lose his wife like he lost his).

This dream unnerved Barry enough to send him across the dimensional divide from Earth-1 to Earth-2, where, ending up at the Garrick's home, he found Jay....who was searching for his missing wife!  Having revealed his identity to the world, Jay felt he was the target of a terrorist group, the Ravagers, who were attacking Keystone City.  As Jay went into a drawer to show Barry proof, he triggered a device they had set...blowing up Jay's home!

The two speeders were to fast to fall for the unplanned explosion, with Jay saving the note of theirs, and Barry saving the fuse from the explosive, which he would use to track the villains.  But, who is the mysterious figure watching the pair?

The two speedsters track the terrorists to their mountain hideout, but do not find Joan there.  Instead, the mysterious figure is Doctor Fate, a JSA teammate of Jay Flash (who worked with the duo before)....and he tells the duo that he was responsible for Joan disappearing.

Seems an extradimensional villain was able to access the magic orb in Dr. Fate's Salem tower, and send a bolt of mystic energy to draw Joan into his dimension....that evil being known as the Lord of Limbo (who was the menace faced by Barry at the end of his quest dealing with the death of Iris).

Barry barely escaped limbo before, and was unable to return to free the other inhabitants, but, working with Dr. Fate, the two speedsters worked their way back....found Joan, faced the Lord of Limbo, freed the inhabitants, and still got back home without freeing the Lord of Limbo from his prison!

A special issue dedicated to Gardner Fox, who co-created the original Flash and Dr. Fate, as well as starting the two Flashes on their meetings from multiple Earths, as well as kicking off the Crisis with the earliest of the JLA/JSA meetings (including their first).

Jay Flash and Dr. Fate appeared here after the nineteenth JLA/JSA team-up (against the Secret Society of Super-Villains, coverage coming soon), with Jay appearing next with the JSA in an issue of Wonder Woman, and Dr. Fate starting a run as a back-up feature in the very next issue of the Flash!  An oddly prophetic issue as well, as Barry was worried Joan would die (but didn't), like Iris...who was dead (or was she?).

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Green Arrow Origins

With Arrow ending this week, figured it would be a good time to look back at the origins of the Emerald Archer....

....and over the decades, Green Arrow has had his beginnings told over and over again!

Let's take a look over a few of them, after being thankful that Green Arrow began in More Fun Comics #73 (November, 1941) by Mort Weisinger and George Papp fully formed....

The Birth Of The Battling Bowman

The first telling of Green Arrow's origin happened in More Fun Comics #89 (March, 1943) by artists Cliff Young and Steve Brodie, with millionaire Oliver Queen finding Roy Harper on a lost mesa, and the two using their archery skills to stop crooks from plundering the treasures that were found there.

This adventure ended up being the origin of the Golden Age Green Arrow (and Speedy), who were members of the Seven Soldiers of Victory.

The Green Arrow's First Case

For a telling of Green Arrow's origin, look for Adventure Comics #256 (January, 1959) by France Herron, Jack Kirby and Roz Kirby, wherein millionaire Oliver Queen fell overboard on a ship, ending up on a desert island, and using the local resources to make arrows, hunted for food, then stopped some pirates, and took on his heroic identity of Green Arrow (Speedy getting involved with his own origin told later).  The duo returned to the island as criminals had come across it, and might have found Ollie's diary of his time there and figured out he was Green Arrow.

This introduced the island to the origin of Green Arrow, but that wasn't the end of additions to Green Arrow's origin (but these two origins were reprinted in both the Secret Origins Of The Super DC Heroes of 1976 and in Green Arrow: A Celebration of 75 Years of 2016).

The Origin Of Green Arrow

Green Arrow got his origin revisited in DC Super Stars #17 (November-December, 1977) by Denny O'Neil, Mike Grell and Bruce D. Patterson.  While Oliver had been tracking down a man with proof that his fortune had been stolen, he also remembered his beginnings, very similar to the last telling, but Oliver had grown a beard on the island (and really didn't fashion clothes there as well).  Still stopping pirates (who also had thrown him overboard to begin with), he went on to become Green Arrow, joining the JLA, and losing his fortune.  It also added that he had learned archery from Howard Hill in Hollywood.

This origin is about to be reprinted in a facsimile edition of this issue, with origins of the Huntress and Legion of Super-Heroes as well!

Sometimes A Fool Notion

DC had a Crisis, and its heroes were all living on one Earth, so Ollie got an enhanced origin in Secret Origins #38 (March, 1989) by Mike Grell (who revived Green Arrow as more of an urban hunter with his Longbow Hunters mini-series and Green Arrow regular title) and for the origin, artists Hannibal King, Dick Giordano and Arne Starr.  It was a drunk Oliver Queen who fell off his own yacht who ended up on the island, but this Oliver Queen had fancied himself Robin Hood as a child, with movie stunt archer Howard Hill as a friend, and the "pirates" he stopped on the island were simple weed farmers. 

Going to a costume party soon after his return, Oliver was mulling over the idea of Robin Hood when his party was crashed by criminals, who he stopped in costume (even using an unintentional trick arrow with a golf ball on the end) to stop them.  The main thief, Lester Norton, as being taken away, was upset about being stopped by that "green arrow guy", and the Star City papers stuck that name on Ollie's heroic identity.

Speedy's adjusted origin filled the second half of this book, and this tale has yet to be reprinted.  This Green Arrow origin showed Oliver as not much of a businessman, but more of a romantic, wanting to be a hero.

From The Beginning

This origin started similarly to the DC Super Stars one, with Green Arrow having a showdown with someone in the rain.  Green Arrow Annual #7 (1995) by Chuck Dixon, Rick Burchett, Chris Renaud, Eduardo Barreto and Gerry Fernandez introduced a pathetic playboy Oliver Queen, who had inherited his money from his parents, who fought with the crew of his yacht, and got no help when he fell overboard. to end up on an island. 

Recalling his childhood when his dad gave him a bow and arrow for Christmas (which young Ollie went outside with and accidentally killed a bunny), Ollie fashioned a bow and arrow to hunt for food, and came upon a wrecked ship on the island, and a survivor of that ship.  The pair fashioned a small raft on the island, but Ollie left his helper behind when he found out he was Nicholas Kotero (noted serial killer of women). 

Ollie ended up on another island, and found some weed farmers, and ended up back home, taking on the Green Arrow identity (and mismanaging his inherited fortune while playing hero).  It was Kotero he was confronting in the rain, as the killer also escaped the island, looking for revenge.

This origin showed Oliver being on more than one island, and that more could have happened to him in isolation.  This tale has yet to be reprinted.

The Mantle

While there were many stories in Green Arrow Secret Files & Origins #1 (December, 2002), the one by Scott McCullar, Rick Burchett and Dan Davis, where Oliver told his son, Connor, of his parents, Robert and Moira Queen.  Robert founded Queen Enterprises, had the Star City Bay Bridge build, owned the Star City Rockets (a baseball team who played at Papp Stadium).  All this, and that the Queens were descended from Sir Robert Queen the Earle of Dornee....which is what gave Robert the idea to give his son a bow and arrow one Christmas. 

Still, Ollie had no use for it after killing a rabbit, but, after a trip to Africa with his parents, guided by stunt archer Howard Hill and big game trapper Congo Bill, Robert explained to his son that he gave him the bow and arrow to help toughen the lad up...and he need to, as the party was set on by lions, killing Robert and Moira, and Ollie only survived because of his archery skills.  Congo Bill sent him home to live with an uncle, who sent Ollie to boarding school...then, Ollie was misspending his money on yachts after....until one day....

This issue also has other stories, and features on Green Arrow, Black Canary, Arsenal and more, as well as Green Arrow's trick arrows and even a chili recipe; but the issue has not been reprinted.

Green Arrow: Year One

Green Arrow: Year One is a six issue mini-series from 2007 by Andy Diggle and Mark Simpson, this time fighting with drug dealers as part of crime syndicate (introducing readers to China White, a female assassin).  Oliver was marooned on an island thanks to his bodyguard, Hackett, came to enjoy the solitude after figuring how to make a bow and arrow to get food, and found "China White"...

...who had enslaved the island's population to produce her drugs, and was working with Hackett.  Ollie fought for the people (including Taiana, a native of the island who helped nurse Ollie back to health when he was injured fighting Hackett). 

Ollie took down the operation with Howard Hill's bow (which the criminals had won in an auction), but didn't take credit for it when the authorities arrived, having a new appreciation for the people of the island.....and that he would take on a new identity, to become someone else, something else....the Green Arrow!

These six issues have been collected a few times since their original publication.

Hopefully, though a little repetitive, this should give you a little insight into the Green Arrow and how he came to be, how a spoiled rich boy became a man and a hero given the right time and circumstances....but that grew from one man, who could say that "my name is Oliver Queen....".