Convergence is finally over and a new era for the DCU can finally begin. Given that DC has been on a hiatus for the past two months to a number of people it’ll be interesting too see how many people will actually return for this June relaunch. I for one have been looking forward to the new status quo of Hal Jordan. Once a reluctant leader of the proud Green Lantern Corps, now due to circumstances from previous story lines Hal has gone renegade for the good of the GLC. Cue Man On The Run, on the loudspeakers now.
It goes without saying that Green Lantern was taken over by the emotional spectrum, despite fans shouting to the heavens on their displeasure for how formulaic it became. Even when current series writer Robert Venditti took over 2 years ago had to deal with the spectrum, it’s kinda hard subject to ignore. This issue completely changes the tone of what Green Lantern has been for over a decade. Not to say that gigantic space adventures can’t happen but the focus seems to have shifted to the underbelly of the universe for Hal to explore in.
I wouldn’t say the book has become “grittier” because it hasn’t, but the focus from gigantic space operas to Hal on the run offers a side to the DC Universe that quite frankly hasn’t been explored enough.
Number 1 issues or issues that begin a new chapter for a character can be a tricky devil to master. How much do you include to catch up new readers, or do you just assume the readership is still the same? Venditti dabbles with a bit of both for the new status quo for Hal. Similar to a cold open for a movie, Venditti drops readers into a brand new world using concepts we all have at least a vague understanding of, while also doesn’t explain in immense detail on why Hal is in his current predicament. It’s all about moving forward and that carries both in the pacing, how the comic is laid out, and Hal’s own personality.
Speaking of Hal for fans of his more brash personality instead of his more stoic leadership characterization that he has earned over the past two years can rejoice. I can’t deny that seeing how be a reckless outlaw against ever increasing odds added a fun element to the book, that and along with Hal’s trademark charm makes for a fun lead character.
Billy Tan returns as the regular series artist and while I’ve praised him in the past, I’ve pointed out some of his flaws as well. This issue seemed to look vastly different than the previous full issue of Green Lantern he did back in January. That could that he had more time to work on the pages, but I think it has to do with the fact that Tan has a new inker, Mark Irwin. Tan’s style still comes through but his lines are tighter and there seems to be more detail with back rounds and individual character models. Characters come off as more expressive and unique, plus the action along with epic splash pages makes this feel like a new art team has taken over.
Outside of the final page the new status quo for Hal Jordan has me excited for what his adventures could entail.
Green Lantern #41 earns a 4/5
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