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Green Arrow's Best Covers

Revisit some of the archer's best covers!

The community has selected Oliver Queen, a.k.a. Green Arrow, as our latest Character of the Month! That means the accurate archer will appear against a new challenger every new edition of the Battle of the Week, but it also means we'll give him plenty of love in articles, too. First up, we're going to highlight some of his best covers! Seeing as the character has been around for decades, we obviously won't have everyone's top choice below. So, if there's a cover you really love and we didn't select it, go ahead and post it in the comments section.


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For many, Oliver Queen's adventures in The New 52 began with issue 17. The issue saw the introduction of a new creative team -- one which would set the book in a fantastic direction -- and artist Andrea Sorrentino's cover (along with Hi-Fi's coloring) did a phenomenal job capturing our attention. It's an amazingly cinematic image as rain pours down on Ollie, fire rages in the background, and smoke fills the air. It's a great cover and an especially great way to begin this list. In fact, pretty much all of the covers during this run could be on the list, but we made the difficult choice of only picking one other one. But we'll get to that later!


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For new readers, Lemire and Sorrentino defined their Green Arrow experience. But for others, Mike Grell's work with the character was unforgettable. Grell produced several standout covers and iconic stories, but it all began back in 1987 with GREEN ARROW: THE LONGBOW HUNTERS. This approach to Oliver's world and the design for the character felt more grounded and Grell's style was the perfect compliment for this new tone. For longtime fans of Ollie, this is certainly a cover that crosses their minds from time to time.


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Jim Lee created a cover that features Green Arrow? Yeah, you can bet it's an obvious choice for the list! Even though Ollie's mostly humorous in the issue, Lee's work on the character is sleek and incredibly cool. It's just an added bonus that we once again get a sample of how Lee handles DC's other big heroes. It's also worth noting that Mike Choi's variant is also pretty terrific.


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We'll give Andy Diggle's YEAR ONE a good amount of praise in Green Arrow's upcoming "must read stories" article. Thankfully, the story also has some superb covers. Each of them are praiseworthy for different reasons, and Jock's debut cover is a real attention-grabber. There's such a strong contrast between the Emerald Archer, the soothing water and the island scenery on the horizon. It's such an immersive image. Diggle delivered a fantastic story and, luckily for him, Jock's cover does a more than thorough job catching someone's eye.


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"Snowbirds Don't Fly" is debatably one of the biggest stories to hit Green Arrow's world. He wasn't there for Roy Harper and he was oblivious to the fact that the kid had turned to drugs. So oblivious, in fact, that he thought Roy was just undercover when the sidekick was found with a group of junkies. Neal Adams' cover does a perfect job capturing Ollie's shock and the toll the drugs can take on someone as we see Roy hunched over and shaking. Then next issue has an equally powerful cover which shows the countless faces drugs has harmed.


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There's dozens of covers that feature the DC hero taking aim, but this one is just downright awesome. Matt Wagner's work on the marksman makes him look so stoic as he takes aim with great posture. Having his name spelled across the brick wall -- in green, of course -- and the soothing red sky are nice additions, too.


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The Bronze Age was filled with dramatic covers that included over-the-top dialogue. The cover of WORLD'S FINEST #210 is a stellar example of this and you can't help but smile while you look at it. I mean, there's a dog with no face and Ollie's pointing at Superman while his face begins to vanish. Neal Adams' character work remains excellent, but you can't help but laugh while you gaze at the ridiculous situation. There's a lot of serious or epic covers on this list, but we're including this one for one very simple reason: it's fun! Why does Oliver still have a face, you ask? Obviously it's because his epic facial hair protects him, right?


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As stated back in our first highlight, Sorrentino did a brilliant job with GREEN ARROW's covers. Everyone likely has their favorites, but we believe the first chapter of Broken shows off his creativity extremely well. Having a shattered and vivid silhouette of Oliver with all of the cast hiding within the pieces was a clever decision. On top of that, the contrast between white and shades of green makes quite an impact.


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There were so many ways to tease a breakup between Dinah and Ollie. You could have them screaming at each other, the duo going their different ways as their faces are covered with tears, or maybe even something incorporating a shattered heart. Instead, Marcos Martin and Alvaro Lopez do something so very simple and it's wonderfully effective. Dinah's the one to "break" the relationship with Oliver and everything from her expression to what she's doing gets that message across loud and clear.


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Mauro Cascioli's cover for the first chapter of the 2010 series is a real jaw-dropper. Cascioli's handling of a more stern and focused Oliver is magnificent and the work with the two completely different settings is every bit as impressive. It's remarkable and worthy of being turned into a poster. Go on, just stare at it for a bit and let all of its greatness sink in.


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Spoiler alert: Green Arrow and Merlyn don't actually fight in this issue. We may not get a battle between these two marksmen within the issue, but James Jean's cover reminds us how exciting and intense a battle between two archers can be. It's a gripping scene as arrows fly in both directions and the two characters have a projectile aimed and ready to fire. So many covers do a praiseworthy job showing Oliver prepared to fire, but this one is packed with so much energy.

What's YOUR favorite Green Arrow cover? Don't be shy, share it with the world in the comments section below.