Repression is something that millions of people deal with on a daily basis, it’s a struggle to say what you want to say in the manner that fits you. After days, weeks, months and in some cases potentially years that repression can eat away, putting that person in a bitter or depressed state. Personally for me, after repressing my own personal emotions I tend to lash out in pure anger telling the entire world what I’m feeling. It’s not a healthy way to live at all, something I’m dealing with even know, but for Jessica Cruz and Simon Baz it’s something they nee to come to terms with very soon. Spoilers lay ahead, you have been warned.
Have you ever read a series and thought to yourself “yeah this is good but it’s something that isn’t moving me.” While I have enjoyed what Sam Humphries brings to the Green Lantern mythos, it’s this issue that conveyed to me, that he understands the core of what makes Green Lantern great. The concept that a Green Lantern isn’t fearless, but rather can overcome said fear is nothing new to the series. However with characters like Simon and Jessica who are both flawed characters, and have them bicker at each other for the first three issues only for both of them to realize why they were chosen.
It’s brilliant that Humphries finds a way to acknowledge the concept that “a Green Lantern isn’t fearless, but they overcome fear” in a manner that fits the scenario that both Jessica and Simon are in. Having Simon deliver that speech to Jessica pushes him pass that asshole characterization he’s had since the Rebirth issue. It felt genuine and sincere. Even Jessica herself grew as a character, while I doubt she’s completely rid of her agoraphobia it’s step in pushing her past that and evolving her character beyond that one particular trait.
Humor is something that I don’t really write about here since most jokes in superhero comics tend to either be puns or horrible one liners, it’s still a needed component to make these stories enjoyable. Cutting away to Baz’s family ponder his wherabouts while a runaway Guardian floats their son in the air. It’s a moment that provides levity in an issue dedicated to raw emotion from the main antagonist. It was perfectly placed and while you can debate the humor of the actual moment I don’t believe that’s what the intention was. Just simply giving readers a brief minor break from dramatic tension will only only allow readers to recompose themselves and gear up for the next round of emotional turmoil.
Similar to last issue, we have three different artist with six different inkers. From my observation Ed Benes was the lead artist and while his rough edged style was pretty easy to spot. The art was completely inconsistent from panel to panel, outside of Bene’s line work I can’t tell you which artist did what particular page. This is the huge con of shipping comics on a bi-weekly schedule, if the artist don’t have sufficient lead time it can lead to a horrible visual experience for a reader. I do have to give credit where credit is due, the storytelling was still easy to follow so while I never felt loss while reading panel to panel. So while it didn’t hurt the emotional crux of this issue, it was still a glaring problem while I was reading.
Green Lanterns #4 is where the series for me has officially found it’s footing. Humphries combines what made Green Lantern popular in the mid 90’s and mix it with the Geoff John’s era to make a comic that is completely unique to anything that has come before. With no Red Lanterns showing up till the last page, both Simon and Jessica further their character development in a moment that doesn’t ring hollow. I was skeptical of Sam Humphries before, after this issue consider me a convert. However the art does bring the issue down a score for reasons previously mentioned.
Green Lanterns #4 earns a 3/5