[identity profile] innerbrat.insanejournal.com posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Woo! First post to the new community. I did come here to post some scans of Golden Age Black Canary, but I saw [insanejournal.com profile] uadlika asked for some scans from Snow Birds Don't Fly, so of course I had to.

Oliver Queen is having a bad day. He references something about Dinah talling him she's "not going to be home when [he calls] anymore..." which I guess means she's [gasp] decided to have a life of her own or something. So he's moping, then he gets set upon by wannabe muggers. Which should be nothing for the Green Arrow, except this happens:

He struggles off to a hospital, where he decides this is the kind of thing you call your best friend about:

There follows four pages of the horrors of withdrawal, the squalor of addiction-related poverty and how racism drives people of colour to drugs. Then:

There follows: PLOT. Ollie is a hothead, Hal doesn't tell him to shut up. They both end up accidentally taking junk, and Roy rescues them.

Dinah doesn't actually appear until the next issue. The issue is 25 pages long, so I'm hoping 8 pages of it is OK; I didn't want to leave any of this out:

After Ollie shows off his coping skills, he goes a-beating up bad guys, leaving his apartment free for one of Roy's friends to break in, OD and die. Hal, meanwhile, puts two and two together regarding what Roy was talking about and goes looking for him.

Time -and plot - passes. The OD'd friend of Roy's has a funeral.

I'll be back later in the week with some scans of Dinah's mother, who is just as awesome and has just as bad taste in men.
From: [identity profile] jlroberson.insanejournal.com
The point isn't condemnation. It's that the character was tested and gained depth, which is why GA is not an "icon" and all the better for it. He has a very particular personality and is very fallible. This was the story that marked that transition. The story arc overall is really about Ollie learning how arrogant he's been, and one could argue that all his spouting and preaching is really angry overcompensation for the loss of his fortune. (again, HAL'S the true liberal--he listens, he tries to make amends, he tries to understand the other side, tries to grow up; and really all his development occurs in the first chapter, within two pages) VERY few DC characters have been allowed to go through this much actual character development, because DC's often very much about a black and white cosmology of GOOD versus EVIL. Certainly at this point it still was. It's not about shades of grey, and this was one of the first times that concept made it in.

I'm not condemning either one. It's not a wrestling match. My view is that misses the point. The point is that an attempt here is made to deal with them as human beings. Consider that Roy was used, along with the other Titans, as a "audience-identification" character most of his history. But if you look at a Titans story from that time, they're still as much like your parents as Supes and Bats were. They lecture, they are not really part of the "scene", they share none of the same problems their audience might.

So they made that leap, with Roy. And it was a little less remote, patronizing, and hypocritical. Notice there's not really a reconciliation at the end: Roy sticks to his guns. The problem was not the heroin, that was a symptom. The real problem is still there, and the break between them remains. That's slightly more grown-up storytelling than you saw at DC at the time. But Marvel on the other hand would have been flexible enough to accommodate it.

Which makes me consider: we might not think twice if this were a Marvel story. The Spider-Man drug stories(which are really about pill abuse, though Harry does do LSD later) are unsurprising in retrospect: the context allowed for it. But also, those stories are, when you look at them, far more scare-stories than this. This has more compassion for the users, while in Spider-Man it's just more Harry being weak, and a lot more melodramatic, and vague(pills being the first cop-out). I mean, what "message" is being given there? Against pill abuse by rich kids? This at least deals with those who are impoverished or other reasons.


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