Godhead rolls on and with odds stacked against the corps, it makes for a more interesting story. For the first time in a while I can’t think of way that the respective corps can actually come out on top. What crazy plan will the writing team of the Lantern titles come up to see the story through. Hopefully the repetition from act 1 will be a thing of a the past, and each chapter will read as the next chapter instead of stand alone episodes that happen to connect. Either way let’s resume Godhead!
Instead of an all out action issue, Venditti goes the polar opposite with character moments between characters in their respective factions. The opening scene deals with a conversation between Orion and High Father, and while it’s not the deepest moment of the book (that comes later) it does firmly establish their relationship to new readers, but I’m not sure how long term fans of New Gods feel about this scene. What makes this scene all the better is the art from guest artist Francis Portela and boy does he bring the nice lines and fun expressions on High Father and Orion.
From the last issue Hal had mentioned he had something up his sleeve and it turns out that it’s to turn towards Sinestro on New Korugar for help. This section of the story in a way serves as to catch up the other characters on events from other titles. It’s exposition heavy but it’s only for a few pages and it’s done with. It’s Sinestro’s dialog that makes the scene bearable, and it seems to me that Venditti had a fun time writing Sinestro’s dialog which seems to be especially true in the next segment of the issue.
The main crux of this issue has nothing to do with New Gods nor does it advance the plot, and given the crossover that might be the wrong move. The dialog and inevitable fight between Hal and Sinestro was the best part of this issue. Venditti absolutely nails Sinestro’s characterization with his mannerisms and calling out Hal on what his recent leadership position has done to him. Sinestro even goes so far as to say that the only reason Hal is even alive is due to him relying on instinct, implying that is how this war will be one,
In a way this scene just shows what makes Hal the character he is and why his fans love him. On the other hand if Hal does revert back to what he was before then it does make his recent character growth all but mute. Given that Venditti was the one who has constructed Hal for this run, I doubt Hal goes back completely to his old ways, Maybe in the finale this scene will come to fruition, but only time will tell on this.
Just in time for Halloween, Venditti decided to end this issue of Green Lantern with the official reintroduction of Black Hand. Sticking to Black Hand’s modern mantle as the Black Lantern the scene seems to be aiming for a dark humor approach but it just falls flat. There is bit of shock value with the Flying Grayon’s skeletons being used to amuse Black Hand, and Hal coming to recruit him.
The biggest surprise was Francis Portela on art duties, and from my perspective he brings out the classic renderings of the characters despite the new costumes. Plus his great job of adding details to not only the individual characters but also back rounds as well. Just take a look at the panel with Black Hand eating popcorn and how each zombie not only looks different but also “acts” different. Hopefully he’ll come back for future issues.
While no this didn’t move the plot further along, it was a fine breather issue that explored a bit into some key players for this crossover.
Green Lantern #36 earns a 4/5
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