‘Arrowverse’ ended with the last episode of ‘The Flash.‘ Despite some fans being disappointed with the less-than-good content we received from DC’s superheroes in the last few years, CW’s franchise is still interesting. All those years ago, specifically in 2012, we met Oliver Queen on the TV show ‘Arrow’ which followed the story of a once-rich playboy whose life drastically changed after being stranded on the mysterious island of Lian Yu. On the other hand, Green Arrow in the comics also had a turbulent history. This article will discuss how Green Arrow died in the comics and popular TV series, ‘Arrow.’
Oliver Queen died twice in the comics. The first time Green Arrow died happened during ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths,’ where shadow demons kill him. The second real death occurred in the second volume of ‘Green Arrow’ from the 1990s, where Oliver sacrifices his life to save Metropolis. In the ‘Arrowverse,’ Oliver Queen technically died twice – first, he was killed by shadow demons during ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ but is resurrected by Sara Lance and John Constantine in the Lazarus Pit. The second time Oliver died was after he sacrificed his life to save the multiverse, once and for all.
Both ‘Arrowverse’ and DC Comics saw Oliver Queen dying multiple times, and each of his deaths was impactful (some more than others). Nevertheless, we will explain each death in the main DC Universe and ‘Arrowverse’ franchise, and if you’re interested, stay with us until the end.
Who killed Green Arrow?
DC Universe saw many superheroes dying, but they rarely really stay dead. Red Hood, Supergirl, and The Flash are prime examples, but we can certainly add Green Arrow to this list.
Green Arrow is one of the oldest DC characters in their publishing history who first appeared in ‘More Fun Comics’ #73 as the rich businessman who, during the night, protected Star City citizens under the mantle of Green Arrow. Since his first appearance, Oliver Queen enjoyed great popularity among readers, but with the establishment of the Earth-Two universe in ‘The Flash’ comics in 1961, Oliver Queen was mostly seen as a member of the classic superhero group Justice League of America and other Golden Age characters.
Earth-Two version of Green Arrow is killed by Shadow Demons during the ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths’ event
This is essentially the introduction of the concept of the Multiverse, which eventually merged with others in ‘Crisis on Infinite Earths.’ Interestingly enough, old Green Arrow briefly makes a cameo in the story, in which he tries to fight off the horde of demonic creatures called Shadow Demons. However, the old archer is overwhelmed and dies torturous death.
In comparison, ‘Arrowverse’ recreated this death on our TV screens when Oliver Queen refused to leave and save himself until all people were evacuated from Earth-38 to Earth-One. Green Arrow fought Shadow Demons until the end, shooting his metaphysical trick arrows trying to disable Monitor and delay the inevitable.
CW recreated the death during the same event in ‘Arrowverse’
Unfortunately for Oliver, he had to fight superpowered beings with bare hands, ensuring that evacuated people left with their ships and save themselves. Antimatter wave arrives and destroys Earth-38; while beaten and on the verge of death, Oliver is transported to Earth-One, where his loved one says goodbye.
‘Arrowverse’ made sure that Oliver’s death was much more impactful than the version from the comics, which makes sense since Arrow was always the franchise’s main character.
Now, the Earth-Two version of Oliver Queen was quite unpopular, but Neil Adams and Dennis O’Neil’s version of the character was much better accepted by the fans from 1969 to 1983. Their run saw the archer being more grounded and quirky while giving him mostly the permanent love interest, Black Canary.
The second death of Green Arrow in the main continuity of the DC Universe occurred in 1995, the second volume of ‘Green Arrow’ run
Interestingly enough, Green Arrow in the Bronze Age of Comics represented freedom, human rights, the fight against discrimination, and helping those in need, which the character used to convince Hal Jordan’s Green Lantern to become more grounded as well.
Moreover, Green Arrow’s popularity didn’t stop, so they included the character more in the Post-Crisis era. Following the ‘Crisis,’ Green Arrow had some controversial and really heavy stories that included his girlfriend, Black Canary, brutally tortured and the mysterious Japanese archer Shado, sexually abusing Oliver and giving birth to his child.
After the mini-series ‘Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters‘ (written by Mike Grell) saw the trauma and, basically, the archer’s distance from the major events of DC Universe, stories like ‘Zero Hour,’ which sees Hal Jordan going mad and destroying half of the universe, sees the return of Green Arrow, which leads to the second volume of ‘Green Arrow’ run in 1995.
Towards the #101 issue, Chuck Dixon joined in developing new Green Arrow stories. While reconnecting with his Justice League colleagues, Oliver is wandering across the United States, trying to “clean streets” from criminals, crooks, and other dangers.
During the #101 issue, Green Arrow infiltrates the eco-terrorist group and realizes that they will detonate the bomb that will destroy the whole Metropolis. After seeing what is happening, Oliver tries to deactivate the bomb, but his arm is attached to the device. When Superman arrives and tries to save Oliver by severing his arm, the archer sacrifices himself and saves everyone because he cannot be Green Arrow with one arm.
Green Arrow dies a hero, which he once again shares with his ‘Arrowverse’ counterpart. Let’s discuss the final death of the archer in ‘Arrowverse’ and how both versions of the characters came back to life.
Does Green Arrow come back to life?
After dying in their respective universes, both Green Arrows got resurrected. Let’s discuss the ‘Arrowverse’ version of the archer first. During the ‘Crisis of Infinite Earths’ event, we already saw Oliver Queen sacrificing himself to save billions of people.
However, seeing their friend has died, Sara Lance, Barry Allen, and Mia Queen (adult daughter of Oliver Queen and Felicity Smoke) cannot accept their mentor and friend dying so they decide to resurrect him in the Lazarus Pit, with the help of John Constantine.
Constantine manages to get Oliver’s body back, but he loses his magic in the middle of the session. Oliver awakens full of bloodlust and wants to attack everyone in his way. Understandably, Diggle is furious with his friends but decides to reach Lucifer Morningstar and ask for Oliver’s soul.
He gives them the special card that transports Mia, Diggle, and Oliver to Purgatory, which looks like Lian Yu. Full of anger and bloodlust, Oliver attacks Diggle, who uses his words and awakens his friend fully. However, Jim Corrigan arrives and tells now alive Oliver that he is the next in line to serve a bigger purpose by becoming the Spectre.
Now, this is where things get interesting for Oliver. He uses his newfound powers, and with the help of Corrigan, Oliver fights against Mobius, also known as Anti-Monitor. The Spectre uses his powers to save surviving Paragons in the Vanishing Point and ultimately says goodbye to his friends.
Nevertheless, we get to the final fight between Anti-Monitor and Oliver Queen, with The Spectre using his powers and creating the Earth-Prime, a new, restructured universe. Sara Lance and Barry Allen say goodbye to their friend, and Green Arrow dies.
Of course, this leads us to the new Multiverse, which sees some altered moments in the ‘Arrow’ series, with Tommy Merlyn surviving and Mia Queen and William Clayton growing up together. The same goes for all other shows, but we later find out Oliver Queen as The Spectre is technically alive and keeps track of the new multiverse, which we saw in ‘The Flash’ series when Oliver helped Barry save Earth-Prime.
In the comics, Green Arrow was dead until the third volume of ‘Green Arrow’ run in 2000, as part of the story ‘Quiver’ (written by Kevin Smith) after Hal Jordan resurrected Oliver Queen at the end of ‘The Final Night’ storyline from the 1990s.
Of course, this leads to Oliver Queen being without a soul and a man who doesn’t remember the events of ‘The Longbow Hunters’ series and moments before his death. The whole run essentially sees Oliver regaining his soul with the help of JLA, and his son Connor Hawke, who was Green Arrow during his absence.
Green Arrow is one of the most iconic characters of all time, and despite their initial differences, both the comic book version and ‘Arrowverse,’ brought us many great moments of the Archer from Star City.
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