Blackest Night #6 (Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis/DC Comics/$3.99):
First of all let me start by saying Johns and Reis are an amazing team. I think as far as creative teams go for capes books you could not imagine a team capable of delivering 21rst century capes action like this on a constant basis. Sure both of them are amazing on their own. But paired together, especially in event sized books like Blackest Night or Sinestro Corps war they are virtually unparalleled. Blackest Night is everything an event comic from the Big Two should be. Brilliantly conceived and executed and full of the rich tapestry of continuity, capes clichés, certainly some surprises and superhero action.
Issue #6 of the event is really a fantastic issue. The rainbow corps made up of the best of each colored corps arrive on Earth to tackle the big bad (Nekron) who revealed himself and his plans. They are impotent before his power as the combined Corps realizes they do not posses the fire power necessary to deal with the undead menace.
The issue explodes with action and Johns writes several nice character moments, several well thought out interactions. Two that stuck out to me were the one between Sinestro and Hal. Where Sinestro requests some assistance in killing BL-Supes, and admonishes Hal for not committing the necessary force to the mission. The other scene was between Barry Allen (the Flash) and Hal. Barry uses his speed to move through time to elude the Black rings coming to enslave them those were just two moments in an issue filled with them. Including wonderful vignettes as Gathnet activates a fail safe in all the rings to seek out deputy lanterns among Earth’s heroes and villains. The scenes are magnificent including when the “new” Guardians arrive led by Barry Allen who says “all will be well”.
It was a nice selection of characters to wear the rings, and I really loved the scene of Larfleeze who doesn’t want to share his power of avarice. Here are the new Guardians. Barry is Blue (Hope), Ray Palmer joins the Indigo tribe of Compassion, Wonder Woman wears the violet ring of Love, the Scarecrow has the power of fear and becomes a Sinestro, Mera is overcome with Rage and Luthor’s greed makes him the perfect Orange lantern. Really nice casting by Johns and I can’t wait to see them join the battle in the next issue. Which should really be action packed. With all the Black Lanterns descending on Earth and Black Hand unleashed its going to be hell on Earth for sure.
Ivan Reis exceeds what is expected in a capes event and the art explodes off every page. It’s not his detail that is stunning…it’s the craftsmanship that blows my mind. Wonderful storytelling and blazing action. Great detail and style and something stylistically that really is perfect for the tone of the event. The undead look great, the heroes look amazing. And I will say it, he is the only artist that makes the Luthor armor look good. And he draws the best Larfleeze (one of my newest favorite characters by the way.).
It’s funny but in a lot of ways Reis is doing for this event what Perez had done for Crisis on Infinite Earth’s. Level setting fans expectations for what a capes event should look and feel like. The pages are powerful and dramatic and down right stunning. And really has the best two page splash at the end.
Another thing I enjoy over all about the issue is that I am beginning to like characters I never jad any interest in. although I do not think Mera could ever go toe-2-toe with Wonder Woman, she is like a female Namor. And over the course of this event really grown on me. I also like Atrocitus. A character who I think needs a redesign and I hated art first. But he really is becoming a fun character, especially when paired with Larfleeze to read.
This comic is everything capes fans love about comics. Pure unbridled fun, great use of characters and history (even tweaking ideas and concepts for the better), and quality of the highest level.
9 out of 10
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Tags: Green Lantern (Hal Jordan)