I’ve read superhero comics regularly since May 2006 and one of the first writers I latched onto was Grant Morrison. Talk about a deep dive into the weird right? One of the first rules I’ve learned is that a Grant Morrison comic can always become more absurd. If you thought the first three issues were insane, my friends we’ve only just started. Warning the following review will contain spoilers. You have been warned.
If you think Grant Morrison won’t include some kinda social commentary in his comics, then honey you must have missed the 90’s. I failed to mention it in my last issue, but thankfully this issues brings up the fact that Hal Jordan (a officer of the law) shot and killed a unarmed prisoner. I don’t have to delve to much to tell how bold it is for Grant to make this story about a cop killing a innocent man. Yet and mostly to Grant’s credit, it doesn’t feel forced, this particular plot point fits neatly into the overall theme that he wants for this series. It also keeps true to Hal’s character that occasionally will go rogue to accomplish his goal. This is how you evoke something from our society and make it apart of this insane comic featuring space cops and one of them is a erupting volcano. Beautiful.
It’s really hard to be shocked when reading superhero comics after a certain point. Writers tend to use similar tropes that will surprise new readers The Green Lantern #4 is the first comic in quite sometime where I truly shocked when the rug was pulled from underneath me. Basically the story is split between two seemingly different stories, one that focuses on The Green Lantern Corps dealing with a Sun Eater (remember those kids?) and another story where a four armed cowboy is the middle of negotiations. I’ll admit initially it felt a bit disjointed whenever Grant would change the scene to this seemingly unconnected scene. Of course this being a Grant Morrison comic, it all makes sense in the end, after Hal Jordan was arrested for his actions in the previous issue, which perfectly segues into the reveal that Hal wants to sign up with the Black Stars. Most reveals are treated to a splash page but Morrison doesn’t stick with that trend and the impact of the reveal isn’t loss one bit. Grant Morrison proving why he’s a master of comic books.
Let’s be honest here people, if Liam Sharp doesn’t at least get nominated for a Eisner for his work on this series so far and this issue in particular. He takes Grant’s “space cop” story and gives it that hardcore sci-fi feel to it, the entire comic is brimming with strange, exotic and creepy visuals that somehow mesh into a cohesive narrative. Even when the layouts began to be a bit more complex, the narrative didn’t lose it’s flow at all, a perfectly balance between telling a amazing sequential story and unorthodox layouts. Plus the coloring by Steve Oliff continues to be amazing, I love how visually dark the comic can be at points but it never loses it’s brightness forever. I hope when people look back on this series that they don’t simply remember Liam Sharp’s pencils, but also Oliff’s amazing colors.
The Green Lantern remains the oddball of the DC Universe, no other comic currently published by DC has this. I would advise you to jump on board now, because it’s only going to get weirder from here.
The Green Lantern #4 earns a 5/5