Reviewed by: Mathan â€œLong Bowâ€ Erhardt
Story Title: The Devil Inside
Written by: Judd Winick
Penciled by: Phil Hester
Inked by: Ande Parks
Colored by: Guy Major
Lettered by: Clem Robins
Editor: Bob Schreck
Publisher: DC Comics
The issue begins with some of those nasty looking demons from last issue taking out some of the people who don’t understand the concept of â€œPeace or Perish.â€ Green Arrow explains the rules (pay close attention); No Guns, No Crime, â€œbe it theft or physical assault.â€ If you break the rules the demons come out and dispense justice, of the â€œPerishâ€ variety.
Meanwhile outside the impenetrable mystical dome around Star City Batman, Superman and Jason Blood try to figure out what’s going on. Back inside the dome, where everything of a mechanical nature has ceased working, Green Arrow (both of them) save some folks from the demons. It appears that they are vulnerable to arrows. But if you attack one, more come. The Arrows have figured out a nifty way of escaping them.
Back at their HQ, Ollie wants Connor to get the word out that stealing brings more demons. Connor tries to explain that since there is no power in all of Star City, stealing might be impossible to avoid. But stubborn Ollie just gets frustrated and then he tries to be over protective of Mia by preventing her from helping their efforts. But Ollie finally gets some good news; he’s found the Riddler.
And in a scene reminiscent of Green Lantern #154, Ollie tortures the Riddler for info. But really what good is info when there are no computers to look stuff up? So Ollie and Connor go to the library for some background on Albert Davis the mastermind behind the whole scenario. Connor and Ollie go to check out Davis’ home and find dozens of demons protecting the house. How will they save the day? I guess we’ll find out next issue.
Winick is one of those writers who tend to get beat on by the fans. I’ve met him; he’s a nice down to Earth guy. In my eyes some of the criticism of him is fair while others is outlandish. Some fans didn’t like how Connor and Ollie butted heads on the whole stealing issue. After all Connor lived most of his life with no electricity why is he so hung up on it now? My take is that Connor was being a realist and Ollie wasn’t looking at things clearly. Didn’t see a problem with that scene. Howeverâ€¦
The jail cell beating troubled me on two levels. #1. On the second page of the issue it clearly states â€œall crimes, be it theft or physical assault, are verboten.â€ What Ollie does to the Riddler is clearly physical assault and demons should have arrived. I’m sure that this will be given a perfectly good explanation in the concluding chapter. Because both Winick and Schreck are too professional to let this slip past their notice, I will rest easy.
#2. This scene is way too close to the aforementioned scene in G.L. #154, and sort of reminds me of Nightwing pummeling Grodd in The Outsider. It almost seems like Winick thinks that when backed into a corner brutality is what a hero does. I accepted this scene because Winick writes a clearly frustrated and fed up Ollie. I believe that Ollie would resort to this to save lives. The scene works perfectly for the character, but it’s disturbing that the writer continues to put his characters in these situations.
The library scene is so well written. The entire book flows nicely. I really did dig this issue.
Parks and Hester are the Green Arrow team as far as I’m concerned. They have given this book a dark look that suits the characters well. And since there is now power they are given complete control of shadows and light, which they use masterfully. I really feel sorry for the team that has to follow this great pair. And man, those demons look scary.