Green Lantern Corps #1
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin, Scott Hanna, and Gabe Eltaeb
After faltering with the Bat family last week I know some people might be wary about Peter Tomasi and screwing up a sure thing, but I think those people don’t give him enough credit. This isn’t a sure thing, this is Green Lantern Corps. This is the title that elevated him so highly at DC Comics, and that spun out his Emerald Warriors title. This is Guy freaking Gardner, and nobody at DC writes him better than Peter Tomasi. For years now Tomasi has been making Guy into an irreplaceable fixture of the DC Universe, while Johns has been showing us how much better things are with Sinestro than Hal. This time around though, Guy is partnered up with Kyle, or Arisia, or even the ‘Wog. This time he has a challenge in my least favorite Earth Lantern, John Stewart.
The issue opens up with a mysterious new threat killing a few Lanterns and a prisoner they had, but while that sets up the end of the issue, the book really kicks in just after that. Guy Gardner and John Stewart, both on Earth (though not together), and trying to get their lives together. And by that, I mean that our stars are looking for day jobs, and from the get-go Tomasi makes it clear that these are two guys who make zero effort to hide their identities. Guy tries to be a high school football coach, something he had done prior to being given the ring all of those years ago, and while he impresses everyone in the waiting room, he winds up being turned down for the obvious reasons. You know, the fact that he’s a super hero, the fact that he’s public, the fact that he’s a space cop, and the fact that, well, he has a more important full time job than “high school football coach”. John goes back to architecture, but winds up getting fed up with people trying to take shortcuts and building on a budget, and he abandons the job after scaring the crap out of the people with a giant drop.
It may not seem like the most major thing in the world, but this is the sort of thing that separates Guy and John from Hal and Kyle. The lack of masks, the fact that they are just themselves, they aren’t guys looking to blend in. It isn’t to say that they are more motivated or dedicated than Kyle or Hal, but they were willing to commit their lives to the job and not just parts of it. Hell, I think this might be the first time I’ve seen either on Earth since Blackest Night. These are two guys who eat, breathe, and sleep the Corps. It’s their lives, it’s who they are, and honestly, it’s why their pairing may finally make John Stewart a character that I can like.
Fernando Pasarin earned this job after doing some amazing work on Emerald Warriors, however he seems to be coupled with a different inker and colorist, which isn’t a bad thing. His character work remains awesome, the excessive detail in the opening slaughter, Guy and John from start to finish, hell, the redesign of Oa. Everything here looks big league and gorgeous, and it has a bit of an epic feeling to it. I’m going to go as far as to admit that this issue looks better than anything he did in Emerald Warriors, and it leaves me really excited to see if he can outdo himself.
The issue comes to a head on Oa when Guy and John gather a crew of Lanterns together to go investigate a distress call, more for something to do than anything else. Two Lanterns with nothing to do on their homeworlds who just want to do their job? That’s reason enough for me to buy them getting together a crew that includes Isamot and Hannu! And to discover something shocking as the issue ends? The issue leaves off on a great cliffhanger. Whatever stumbles Tomasi hit with B&R last week seem to have been localized there, as he turns in a phenomenal effort with this issue. A great start for the Corps!