I have to admit, despite there being 52 titles in DC’s New 52, this list was harder to build than I thought. Of course, I made it harder for myself by not including the obvious choice – Batman (who would have been a shoo-in for this list anyway, 75th anniversary and all) – but still, with 52 titles in total, it shouldn’t have been this hard to pick six characters that had a good year.

Some of the DC New 52’s 52 titles can be a chore to slog through, but there have been some aces in the pack that managed to elevate themselves above the rest, thanks to a combination of a cracking team of creators and an elevated status thanks to shows like Constantine, Gotham, Arrow, and The Flash.

Here are six characters that managed to stand out in 2014:

1. Green Arrow

Green Arrow - no longer just a Robin Hood rip-off anymore
Green Arrow – no longer just a Robin Hood rip-off anymore

How did a character who started out as a Robin Hood rip-off become one of the most well-known DC characters today? Well, that’s just the power of a well-made television series. The Arrow TV series has been a solid take on the character, hitting the bull’s-eye over and over again with its compelling stories and entertaining cameos from DC characters.

Jeff Lemire’s solid run on the flagship Green Arrow title also saw a change in Oliver Queen’s backstory and Green Arrow mythology – introducing the Arrow Clan, and skirting closer to the TV show, with characters created for the show like John Diggle and Felicity Smoke turning up in the book as well. Green Arrow is also playing a huge role in the Future’s End story, and is also a member of the Justice League United (also written by Lemire).

We still don’t know how it happened, but all of a sudden, Green Arrow is now more than just a guy in green running around with a bow and arrow.