Friday, June 1, 2012

Green Lantern #7-9: A Review

Reviewing Green Lantern is an increasingly difficult task for me.  The mythology Geoff Johns began with his Green Lantern: Rebirth mini-series has grown into one of the most complex in comics history.  That complexity has brought with it more sophisticated stories but it has also made it difficult to describe the book to a casual reader, to say nothing of finding a good starting point among the recent monthly issues for the new readers! 

Miraculously, Johns does a decent job of trying to establish the status quo for new readers with Green Lantern #7.  In brief, we are reminded how ex-Green Lantern Sinestro has been forcibly reinstated to his old post after an incident which bonded a Green Lantern ring to his hand.  Tasked with freeing his homeworld from the army of fear-empowered soldiers that bears his name, Sinestro turns to the one person whose talents he can rely on -  his arch-enemy, Hal Jordan! 

Needless to say Jordan is reluctant to join forces with Sinestro, even when offered a noble cause to fight for and a chance to be a hero again.  Still, Jordan agrees to the bargain and true to his word Sinestro does give Hal a modified Power Ring in exchange for his help.  Of course once the deed is done,  Sinestro notes that he never agreed to give Hal a battery and leaves him stranded on Earth.   Sinestro has come seeking Hal again as this issue opens, claiming to have discovered a prophecy which indicates that The Guardians of the Universe will soon destroy The Green Lantern Corps!

Surprisingly, Sinestro is telling Hal the truth.  Even as they speak, The Guardians are following Sinestro's trail and taking steps to kill any who they suspect may know the truth of their plans.  However, before Hal and Sinestero can take any action, the two are captured by the Compassion-powered Indigo Tribe and taken back to their homeworld - the planet Nok.

Issue #8 is a largely taken up by an extended action sequence, as Hal escapes from the Indigo Tribe's prison.  Critics who claim Geoff Johns is unable to write anything but talking-heads comics would be well-advised to check out this issue as Johns proves himself every bit as capable of high-action, low dialogue stories as the next fellow.

The plot picks back up with Issue 9, as Sinestro - who we briefly saw being tortured in the previous issue - is consumed by the Indigo Ring.  After making yet another hurried escape, Hal seeks out the source of the Indigo Power and meets Natromo - the being responsible for creating the Indigo Tribe.  It is Natromo who confirms much that has been hinted at previously regarding the Indigo Tribe being made up entirely of brainwashed criminals and further explains the history between The Indigo Tribe and Hal's predecessor, the Green Lantern Abin Sur.


If it seems like I am giving away too much, rest assured that what little plot information I am giving away is but a drop in the bucket.  And if I spoil or spell-out any details here, it is only to showcase the majesty of the universe that Johns has built.  There are many plot details and twisted turns I have said nothing about, so you can still enter into this book after reading this review without fear of knowing everything that is coming.

All three issues are amazingly illustrated by long-time Green Lantern penciler Doug Mahnke.  His work is as amazing as ever but it is the inking team - which includes Mahnke himself - who deserves the highest praise.  Believe it or not, a team of five separate inkers worked on these three issues but you would never know it from looking at the artwork, so uniform is the inking on each page.

In all fairness, despite the high quality storyline and wonderful artwork, I cannot whole-heartily recommend this series to new readers.   Pick up Green Lantern: Rebirth and start working you way to catch up to us.  But if you're a long-time Green Lantern fan looking for a good place to jump back in, you couldn't pick a better time to start reading.


No comments:

Post a Comment