A while back I argued that Supergirl, specifically of the Arrow-verse show, is a better character than Superman. I also believe Green Arrow, specifically of the CW show, is superior to Batman. Here’s my reasoning.
1) Batman fights the mob. Oliver Queen is a member. He gets that organized crime is better than anarchy (although Anarchy is a fun character) or tyrannical supervillains rising to the top.
2) Batman fights the League of Assassins. In some incarnations he trained with them, and he had a love-child with their princess, but he’s broken off ties with them. Oliver Queen was briefly the League’s right-hand man, he married their second-born princess, their firstborn princess inspired him to be a superhero in the first place, his sister’s father was Ra’s al Ghul for a while, and he frequently teams up with them, but he also fights them sometimes. I’d say that second story is more interesting.
3) Batman fights the mob. The Starling City vigilante targets the corrupt businessmen and supervillains who control the mob. Batman is just fighting the symptom; Green Arrow goes for the heart of the problem.
4) Batman is a loner. Yes, he has a HUGE bat-family, but those are all technically sidekicks. Green Arrow began his journey alone, but one of the main points of his show is that he can’t do it alone. He’s spawned two spinoffs by inspiring other people to be superheroes. And I don’t think you can call Black Canary, Mr. Terrific, Arsenal, or the ever-brilliant Felicity Smoak his sidekicks.
5) Bruce Wayne is little more than a billionaire playboy philanthropist. Oliver Queen is a well-developed and interesting character. Yes, Bruce Wayne plays a critical role in keeping Batman from going over the edge, but he’s the mask. Batman is the real person. “Bruce Wayne lives in Batman’s attic”: one of the Lego Batman movie’s hilarious lines, but also an accurate description. Oliver Queen, on the other hand, is more real than his night-life persona.
6) Batman hides from most of the police. Green Arrow, at least recently, openly works with the police (unless they’re shooting at him due to some clever developments in the plot).
As we’ve established on this blog, a vigilante can be Christian-compatible if they work in line with the governing authorities. Batman doesn’t, not really. Green Arrow has learned to, much more than Batman.
I rest my case.
Who’s your favorite superhero and why? Let’s Connect!