Green Lantern #12
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Renato Guedes, Jim Calafiore, and Alex Sinclair
The short of it:
Rearmed with the Book of the Black and a Black Ring, not to mention a table of zombies, Black Hand looks to be on top…until the Book of the Black tells him that Hal isn’t his enemy. Hal and Sinestro disable him only to discover that he’s brought together a lot of the undead, but they aren’t Black Lanterns…they’re zombies. And there are a lot of them. Meanwhile you have the Guardians monologuing about their plans, explaining everything and tieing together a lot of plot points concerning them that have been around since the relaunch last year across all four Lantern titles.
The rest of the book is spent with our heroes killing zombies in all sorts of creative means while Black Hand asks his book questions and actually receives answers. Sinestro pulls together a creative means to getting a second light for them to completely eliminate them with (as was the method in Blackest Night, Green and anything else does it), and I stress creative. It was pretty awesome and continued to push his character in a positive direction, but unfortunately left them both unconscious with Black Hand standing over them as we cliffhang and wait for the annual!
What I liked:
- It was really cool to see the army of zombies without them all being Black Lanterns. The shuffling mindless undead made things a lot creepier than a bunch of super powered ones would have. It was more horror than blockbuster.
- The Guardians revealing all of their plans was cool, and yeah, most of them aren’t really totally new, but it was nice to see them all laid out and not have it distract from the story as a whole. Also, it’s always nice to see Kyle pop up in the core Green Lantern title, even if it’s just for a one panel cameo.
- I love how subtle the manipulations were to recreate Sinestro as a hero. Just a few little moves and he did the rest on his own really displays his character, and the fact that it’s his own dedication to doing what he believes is right that really does define him. Johns has evolved him from opposite number villain to the most interesting anti-hero in comics. Right now he’s a good guy because he wears the Green Ring, but his actions are not that different from when he wore the Yellow. He has his code and he lives by it.
- The tone of this book was super creepy, straight up super hero horror, and I loved it. I have my complaints about the art and the mood it set, but the tone was perfect. And the splash page with the field of zombies? Awesome.
- The sacrifice Sinestro made was more symbolic than anything else, his redemption is coming about very naturally, and really, Hal Jordan is actually helping with it. Both characters are getting better, as Sinestro finally is able to claim the character depth he’s been so deserving of, while Hal finally has someone to play off of to force the character to be written more interestingly.
What I didn’t like:
- This issue had some pretty major happenings, and a pretty potentially amazing zombie scene, and yet this issue received fill in artists. Either of which I’d be fine with in most cases, but this issue NEEDED Doug Mahnke on it, and the lack of him really hurt it across the board.
- For as much as I like the way the Guardians went ahead and provided exposition for the over arching story, I really wish they hadn’t turned into such generic bad guys. The fact that the Lanterns haven’t picked up on it is completely baffling as they’ve just been total heels, more so than usual.
I wish the various Books of the spectrums were better defined. Are they history books? Prophecy books? Visions of the future? If they tell the future than why couldn’t Scar see the twists and turns of Blackest Night coming? All she did was read that book every time we saw her. And on that note, how do you read a book that is constantly changing? Do you keep starting over?
I really hate that this issue had fill in artists, it was just such bad timing. The big awesome finale to an arc that was just designed to take advantage of Doug Mahnke and there is no Doug Mahnke. Boo-urns.
I would love to see Geoff write a horror book, he’s shown a great understanding of how to make things scary, but in an environment where the characters don’t have unbeatable superpowers and unkillable name value I think he could turn out something incredible.
Why does Amanda Waller know Carol was a Star Sapphire?
How has nobody on Oa noticed that Sinestro is flying around with a partner? Wouldn’t there be two energy signatures? Am I completely forgetting an earlier explanation?
Oooooh, Ethan is drawing the Annual in two weeks. That is going to totally make up for the art in this issue. Ethan only comes to Green Lantern when serious business is in store. Something big is going to happen, and the last page of this issue makes my prediction a simple one.
Man, where has Jimmy Calafiore been lately? I haven’t seen him since Secret Six!
As cool as it was to think that Sinestro was actually chosen by a Green Lantern ring again, the fact that his was the only ring in the Corps that could not be removed made it immediately sketchy. The fact that someone or something was behind it, and that there was a larger purpose behind it, is just obvious. This doesn’t discount the fact that it was nice to get a little hint towards most likely finding out even more soon. It doesn’t cheapen his redemption story at all, if anything it just provides the catalyst that got everything started.
Tags: Black Hand, Blackest Night, DC Comics, Geoff Johns, Green Lantern (Hal Jordan), jim calafiore, New 52 (DC Comics), Reviews, Sinestro, Third Army