Today’s lesson kids is never assume something, a lesson that Hal Jordan has yet to learn. Warning the following review does contain spoilers. So if you don’t want your comic spoiled, I suggest you read your comic before continuing on. You have been warned.
When it comes to comic book fans, how a character’s voice comes off in a book is a make or break for certain readers. Granted this all pure subjective, but these iconic characters should be consistent in their voice and tone. It’s already firmly established that Venditti understands how Hal’s voice and he revels in it. The best parts of this issue is Hal talking like a gunslinger, full of bravado despite the fact that Zod could crush him with one blow. In one instance while Kyle writhes in pain, he can’t see Hal but only based off his tone can tell Hal is smiling. It’s Venditti’s voice for Zod is what has me really impressed.
Most iterations of Zod have him screaming and be a raging mad lunatic. More so raging lunatic thanks to Michael Shannon’s performance from 2013’s Man of Steel. Venditti’s Zod carries his intimidation through his dialog. Yes Van Sciver art also lends to how terrifying Zod can be by his body language, but it’s choice of words and how he talks about The Green Lanterns as if they’re nothing. Hell give Venditti a General Zod mini series and I’ll probably read it.
I fully expected this issue to start with Zod Vs. the entire Green Lantern Corps, with this story I love that Venditti appears to moving this story at a slower pace. After last issues bombastic opening it makes perfect sense to slow everything down a bit and allow the reader to gain a sense of the plot. Nothing is really explained in this chapter, only vaguely hinted at. Yes we know Zod wants to conqueror worlds but what’s so special about this one? Venditti manages to make this issue compelling without revealing his hand, a skill that more writers need to master. What really shocked me about this comic was the twist.
General Zod is feared throughout the galaxy, when you see Zod enslaving a populace you would assume that said populace wants Zod out. Venditti blows away that idea and they worship the fallen General from Krypton. This reveal only works because of how the General turned Dictator has been perceived in the past and Venditti showcasing the seemingly enslaved peoples prior to attacking Hal. I just hope that this doesn’t lead to Hal attempting and successfully turn them against Zod. If they do rise up against Zod it isn’t the worst thing that could happen but it wouldn’t be as interesting from my perspective.
Shockingly enough after Rafa Sandoval’s hard hitting first issue, Ethan Van Sciver was on penciling duties for this chapter. Van Sciver is known for his splash pages, but it’s comics like this that make me appreciate him as an artist. It’s all boils down to his storytelling and with an issue like this, storytelling is king. The dinner scene is chock full of small little details that form a complete sequence and it’s beautiful. If you’re looking for that amazing double splash page, well let’s just say it’s pretty mind blowing once you look at it.
Venditti continues to bring the epicness to the world of The Green Lantern Corps. This issue was the calm before the storm and you can hear the thunder. Amazing issue once again from Robert Venditti and Ethan Van Sciver.
Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #38 earns a 4/5