Geek Reads

Geek Reads

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Catching up on Green Lantern -New 52

** spoiler alert ** When I first heard of the New 52 retcon of DC last year, I feared for the worst.

That is, most of us will have to bear with origin retelling of the stories that we have been glued to and following for the past 5 years, or in most cases for the past decade, including major DC events like Inifinite Crisis, Final Crisis, the earth shattering and successful crisis of Blackest Night and the subsequent Brightest Day and not to mention the much polarized Flashpoint.

But good thing for us Lantern readers, the New 52 GL not only takes on a surprising twist but mainly follows events after the most recent GL crisis which was War of the Green Lanterns and the subsequent sequel called Aftermath.

For most readers who have been following Geoff Johns’ (winning) writing streak and take on our Emerald crusader, Sinestro now seems to be the main torchbearer of the GL Corps after the Guardians disowned and fired Hal Jordan following his actions on War of the Green Lanterns, which I felt was rather harsh. But then again the Guardians will always have their way.  

Now, having gone back to Earth and in search of a normal life, Hal Jordan can’t seem to make ends meet and mend the relationship that he so wants to have with Carol Ferris, who at this time has shelved her Star Sapphire status and current Reign as Queen of the Corps of the planet Zamaron. Hal for the better part of the Compiled 6 issues of the New 52 GL, is a displaced and aimless Lantern wanting to relive his purpose as a member of the Corps and one who feels that he can effect change from that elevated status rather than an ordinary citizen of Earth.

Of course, this doesn’t stop him at an early point in the first issue, from jumping through the window of the next door building after witnessing a woman being attacked by a odd looking skinhead that had veins protruding thru his arms and weird tattoo shapes on his head. He simply does this in a beat only to find himself in the middle of a movie shoot and later had to be bailed out from jail by Carol herself. 

Nothing seems right up until Sinestro arrives for a surprise visit and asks him to do everything he says if he wants to have his ring back. As proof, Sinestro wills and contructs an extension of his own ring which naturally finds its way to Hal’s fingers, and transforms him back to the Emerald Warrior we know. But true to his crafty nature, Sinestro has built specific failsafe precautions into the ring, so much so that Hal’s blast directed at Sinestro the moment he receives the ring is proved futile and inert as the Korugarian reveals that the ring cannot turn against its maker. And that Sinestro can easily take the ring and its power away as he easilly as he gives it. 

It seems that Sinestro has need of Jordan’s help to wipe out the members of the Sinestro Corp harnessing the Yellow Power of Fear on his home planet of Korugar. Naturally, Sinestro still feels that he is the sole savior of his home planet and thus proves to be an effective villain, as one other review said, for he is a bad guy who doesn’t seem to know he is the bad guy. Yup, talk about ultra righteous thinking.

Sinestro then gives Jordan a tempting offer that he can’t refuse. Help him get rid Of the Sinestro Corps on Korugar and he gets to keep the ring.

At the same time this “deal” is being forged, another one is being re-written and wraught on OA, as Ganthet, the former Guardian and once leader of the Blue Lantern Corps that channels the emotion of Hope and later self-inducted Green Lantern of Sector Zero, has been taken by the remaining Guardians and stripped off his emotions.
Ironically, the once champion of conscience and emotion for our Emerald heroes now has become as closed minded as his brethren and is in agreement, that in spite of the Green Lantern Corps embodying the sentient emotion of Will, they are not without fault. Hal Jordan, they deem is the example of all drive and without foresight and Sinestro its extreme polarity of all drive but without a shred of altruism. And on top of the past debacle with the Manhunters and the recent Manipulation of Krona in the recent GL War, the Guardians surprised us all that it is time for the creation of the 3rd army and that the Green Lantern Corps needs to be replaced.

That line has just left me in awe and shaking my head in disgust with the Guardians and by the time I got to issue #6, another wave of change can be felt as the original drawings of Doug Mahnke have been taken over by guest artist Mike Choi who continues the task of softening the look of our favorite GL and aptly making him look younger in his drawings as Hal and Carol seem to have, this time around, officially dated again and are enjoying each others company when she brings him to the Aeronautical Museum of Coast City. This both serves as a good chance for the two star crossed lovers to bond once more as Sinestro flies off to the planet Ogoro in Sector 1417, following the defeat of the Yellow Sinestro Corps on Korugar. 

As it is, I’ve neglected to detail how this was accomplished and would hopefully serve as enough incentive to either read or better yet collect, the first volume of the new 52 GL which is aptly entitled Sinestro. On that planet, Sinestro finds the means of locating his once keeper of the Book of Parallax, Lyssa Drax, who now is enthralled by the Book of the Black. He manages to subdue her but not after ripping out a page of the “accursed” book and getting a glimpse of the future, with the Guardians being true to their word of bringing back the 1st Lantern to lead the Third Army against the Green lantern Corps. As part of that image gruelling visage, he also sees his own death along with Hal Jordan's.

This thus brings more questions to the fore as to who the first Lantern is and who are the 3rd army that the Guardians speak of. With a Guardian holding up the White Ring on the panel depicting Sinestro's vision, could the White Lantern Corps be the Army they are referring to and how much of it as well will affect other members of the DC universe should this come to pass?

The compilation ends once more with Thaal Sinestro coming back to Earth, powering up Hal’s ring and summoning him to another mission, just after Hal has finally accepted the state of normalcy that has to happen in his life in order to have that normal life with Carol.

After reading another brilliant and layered compilation effectively brought to us by Geoff Johns, I am so half-tempted to pick up the loose issues that follow. As of this writing, the current issue is #9 and I would have to wait till next year to get on track with Vol 2 of this edition. But patience will always be the value to cultivate when collecting hardcover graphic novels and with Geoff Johns we know we are always taken cared of and will be very much rewarded.

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