Comic Publishers

March 8, 2010

Dynamite Entertainment Reviews: Green Hornet #1

Publisher:  Dynamite Entertainment
Writer:  Kevin Smith
Artist:  Jonathan Lau
Cover:  J. Scott Campbell

“Episode One: Night and Day”:  Green Hornet has been getting a lot of shine lately with multiple series coming out in the next few months, as well as a big budget movie in the works.  It’s because of all of this hype that I was on the fence about whether or not to even check out this issue, but it seems as if my curiosity got the better of me in the end.  Well that and the fact that I’m a big Kato fan since seeing the character portrayed by Bruce Lee years ago in reruns of the campy Batman television show when I was a kid, and in my opinion he’s a bit cooler than Green Hornet.  But after reading Andy’s preview of the title I figured why the hell not, took a chance, and well, here I am still standin’, still strong.

Yakuza Oyabun, Oni Juuma has called a meeting with Don Fannelli to see if they can reach a truce and pool together their resources to take down a common enemy: the Green Hornet.  Fanelli wants no part in trying to go after the “Bug,” but before he can conclude the meeting and leave, his Second is struck in the forehead by an all too familiar green dart.  By the time that guy’s body hits the ground, the Hornet has seemingly come from nowhere and has taken down a few more men.  Soon after, Kato comes crashing through the wall in Black Beauty taking out more of the goons and causing quite a distraction.  The duo stand back to back and after donning their gas masks, they take down the remaining thugs in the thick green mist.  After handcuffing and leaving the scene, Green Hornet tells Kato that they have done what they set out to do over the past five years, and that the local cops can handle the regular street trash.  Upon returning home, Britt (Green Hornet) tells his wife that he has finally called it quits and that his focus is on her and their young son.  Fast forward to present day, and Britt Jr. is all grown up and sleeping while his girlfriend is moving out.  He wakes up and attempts to talk her into staying, but she explains that he’s become a lazy trust fund kid that’s wasting his potential, and she’s pretty much had enough.  All of this is going on while the paparazzi is snapping pictures, so he bends over and shows them something worth shooting. 

You've got something in your eye!

This series is supposedly based on the script Kevin Smith intended for the Green Hornet movie back in 2004, which I was more excited to hear about than the one coming out soon.  Smith does a pretty nice job with helping to cement the Green Hornet’s legacy and bringing him into the 21st Century as a legitimate crime fighter.  I don’t remember the Hornet deliveringa lot of corny jokes in the past, but it wasn’t overbearing or distracting from the story.  Even the borderline inappropriate comment to Kato was a new one, but Smith likes to skirt the edge of what’s inappropriate, and sometimes he just dives right on in.  I especially liked the conversation between Britt and his wife, because it just seemed natural and you got a real sense of what she’s been goin’ through the past five years.  The issue reads pretty quick, but effectively sets up the series and gives you a pretty good idea of what’s to come.  I know we’ve recently seen a slew of heroes pass the torch to someone else to take their place, but here it seems more natural because being a masked vigilante runs in this family.  For the few that don’t know, the Green Hornet is a descendant of the Lone Ranger, so this is definitely a legacy thing. 

Phil Hester is credited with doing the breakdowns, but I will say that Jonathan Lau gives us very good eye candy here,from the action shots to the more calm scenes throughout the entire book.  I like the fact that he kept the likenesses of Green Hornet and Kato consistent with Van Williams and Bruce Lee from the television series.  There wasn’t much visually to even complain about, and I’m hoping he keeps this level of quality during the series length.

Seeing that the time was taken to include the little things about the original Green Hornet and Kato, from the garage floor flipping to reveal Black Beauty (Green Hornet’s Chrysler Crown Imperial), to the costume designs, and even the Candy Mints wall, made the book that much better.  I’m sure there are some die hard Green Hornet fans out there who won’t give the title a shot as I’ve talked with quite a few, but as a moderate fan myself I’d say at least give it a try before you go on a tirade about “messing with a good thing,” because so far Smith has a pretty good thing going here.

Infinite Speech



  1. Aron White

    I throw down my hard earned on everything Kevin Smith touches. One of my favorite writers of all-time. All of that aside, I can unbiasedly say that this GREEN HORNET series is off to a great start!

  2. billy

    Sounds great! Wish I would have ordered it 🙁

  3. infinite speech

    I haven’t heard of it selling out anywhere so you still should be able to pick one up Billy. Plus with the gazillion variant covers that should make it easier for you to find one.

  4. DecapitatedDan

    WHAT! This was so bad I couldn’t even finish it. I just skimmed the final few pages. Good thing I read it at the local shop. Then again I know nothing about Green Hornet other than Bruce Lee was involved somehow. The art was nice, I will give it that but the writing was terrible, with one bad joke after the next. I was disappointed after how interesting other Dynamite relaunches have been.

  5. infinite speech

    Really? you thought it was that bad? There’s a huge pile of craptacular books out there and even though this book didn’t blow the doors off of anything I don’t think it was bottom of the barrel material either. I only noticed the jokes and levity in the beginning of the book the rest was two friends saying goodbye and Britt telling his wife that the crime fighting days were over. The breakup with Britt Jr and his girlfriend was laughable at parts but it was a pretty serious moment at least for Britt Jr.

    Bruce Lee played Kato in the television series and it was this role that led to Bruce’s role in The Big Boss and his other movies in China becuase of how popular it was over there.

  6. […] events in this issue I’m going to assume he is Japanese, even though in Kevin Smith’s Green Hornet #1 he speaks Mandarin at one point to Britt. Yes he could be bilingual, but I would finally like to […]

  7. […] during this event that we are introduced to Hirohito Juuma, the son of the Yakuza Oyabun from the first issue, who is in town to claim the body of his father who has died in jail.  And just when the evening […]

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