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Hal Jordan and The Green Lantern Corps #42 Review

It seems enacting justice just isn’t that easy.

By all accounts, Robert Venditti is writing one of the most epic and exciting runs on Green Lantern by building the mythos from the ground up in a post-New 52 era. As the series has progressed, he’s created twists on elements that establish new dynamics and exciting developments. Today’s issue reveals a police corps first introduced in the 90s are making a comeback.

So what’s it about?

The official summary reads:

“DARKEST BEFORE DAWN” part one! Hal Jordan is the paragon of a Green Lantern: Courageous and unrelenting. But even a hero can sometimes doubt the methods they’re known to use. And in those moments, something dark creeps in and it can create an evil the universe isn’t ready to face!

Why does this matter?

The Darkstars have been hyped up for a while now in Venditti’s run, (mentioned way back in #36 for instance), so it has been a long time coming. These characters add a fascinating ulterior police force to the universe which is sure to create some backlash. This issue also introduces the idea that criminals maybe should be killed for their crimes. Dark stuff! You can read more about Venditti’s thoughts on the Darkstars here.

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

Bad guys sure know how to make things look evil.

This issue opens with the Controllers continuing to wax poetic about their devious plans with some equally evil looking construction of the Darkstars construction. This helps cement the fact this police force is corrupt and only gets worse when they turn on their creators. From there Venditti cuts away to Tomar-Tu and Somar-Le talking at the Sciencells maximum security prison. This transition is a tad harsh but makes a lot of sense once you hear Tomar-Tu out. Hal Jordan joins in on the discussion as they converse about Tomar-Tu’s crime of murder and how he very much believes he did the right thing.

Though it’s pretty one-sided, Tomar-Tu’s argument does make some sense. The most compelling element is how Venditti and Sciver never paint the alien in a negative light. He believes he’s right and Hal disagrees. Whether or not he’s right is never positively answered, which makes the last few pages all the more interesting. Venditti has unleashed a new kind of policing hero, and it’ll be interesting to see how the Lanterns respond.

Where do these guys get their style?

It can’t be perfect can it?

I’m not a massive fan of Sciver’s general work here although he can wow with a choice full-page splash that must have taken ages. The characters tend to look rather flat, and the layout design is somewhat lazy. Take for instance a scene between Hal and Tomar-Tu midway through the book. The panels cascade down the page overlapping each other. They don’t add much to the storytelling aspect and seem just to go back and forth as if it shows they are arguing, but we already got that.

Is It Good?

I’m genuinely interested to see how this new dynamic for the Green Lanterns plays out. Venditti sent the Green and Yellow Lanterns into chaos as they attempted to figure out who would police the universe and they have a new threat to their jobs coming from the Darkstars. It seems enacting justice just isn’t that easy.

Hal Jordan and The Green Lantern Corps #42
Is it good?
Venditti continues to send our Lanterns on a tailspin adventure worth exploring.
Venditti bookends the book well with a captivating conversation about what justice means midway through
The Darkstars are a cool 90s element well worth exploring
The imagery can look flat with some rather boring layouts here and there

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