First and foremost, I want to wish everyone who lives in the United States, may your Thursday be filled with delicious food followed by a food coma. Despite the fact that the holidays are supposed to be a time of reflection and being around those we all love and adore but the reality is that we sometimes Thanksgiving means having uncomfortable conversations with family members or friends that make you wish you were back home reading comics in peace. Can you picture a Thanksgiving with the Sinestro and Green Lantern Corps? That’s where we find ourselves this time around. Warning spoilers are to follow.
Whether you’ve been reading comics for one year or forty years, one thing is certain. Death is absolutely meaningless in the world of superheroes. This isn’t me or other readers being cynical, even the writers themselves acknowledge this trope in the world of comics. So it’s no shock to see that Hal Jordan isn’t dead what does surprise me is where he ends up. Instead of transporting Hal to Qward, The Fifth World, or even a parallel Earth Venditti creates a limbo specifically for Green Lanterns, one could see this as Heaven especially since Abin Sur himself refers to it as reward for those who have died as a Green Lantern.
Given that the theme for Hal Jordan from the start of this series (even prior) is that his own willpower is growing more and more powerful, it makes sense that he would end up in a place that is rewards those who are powered by will. However most of the scene just leaves more questions then answers and that’s perfectly fine, not everything needs to be explained right away. The allure that Abin Sur is in this comic is enough to hold your attention long enough before the issue ends. It’s set up for whatever Hal has to do get back to our plane of existence.
Before I read this issue I was worried that there would a pointless feud between Natu and John due to the different corps they belong to. The animosity from John to Natu fits within his current role as corps leader, but I love that both John and Natu set their differences aside to get them out of their current predicament. It doesn’t dissolve the tension that both groups have for each other and it also allows for the rest of this Brainiac arc to play out without dealing with too much infighting between the two corps. It’s a delicate balance that Venditti is walking here and so far he’s doing a great job.
Rafa Sandoval returns for this issue, and while Van Sciver did an amazing job of giving us the epic scale that is Starro the Conqueror, but Sandoval shows us what makes Starro really horrifying. Give credit to Sandoval to not have the Xudarians walk like typical zombies but rather each Xudarian is given their own unique body posture as they marshal towards to the two corps. I did think that the action sequences for this issue felt a bit claustrophobic in comparison to the previous issue he drew. On a minor note, I did smile seeing Starro stuffed in jar and his eye just screams “LET ME OUT.”
Despite the fact that this issue was the second part of an arc, despite the fact this issue continued the breakneck pace it definitely felt most like a breather issue. Sandoval’s art was still good, not as great as previous issue but still very consistent and beautiful to look at. Overall still a fun part to a fun series.
Hal Jordan & The Green Lantern Corps #9 earns a 3/5