Friday, July 29, 2016
Green Lantern (vol.3) #49 (1994)
Green Lantern (vol.3) #49 (February, 1994)
"Emerald Twilight, Part Two: The Present"
Writer - Ron Marz
Penciller - Fred Haynes
Inkers - Romeo Tanghal & Dennis Cramer
Colorist - Steve Mattsson
Letterer - Albert De Guzman
Assistant Editor - Eddie Berganza
Editor - Kevin Dooley
Cover Price: $1.50
Part Two of Emerald Twilight. If you need/want to get caught up, go 'head and check out yesterday's discussion of Green Lantern #48. For some coverage of Green Lantern #50, please make sure to check out this coming weekend's Weird Science DC Comics Podcast, where Reggie and I will be taking our Cosmic Treadmill back to late 1993/early 1994 to break it all down. It's always a good time, give it a listen if you're interested!
Hal Jordan's coming our way, and he's in a mood! Hot off the heels of his summoning to Oa for disciplinary action regarding his selfish and irresponsible use of his ring, a ticked-off Hal is on his way. I'm a bit confused here, as I thought his ring ran out of juice last issue... I'm not quite sure how he's powered enough to get him off the ground. Maybe I missed something...
During Hal's trek to Oa, he runs across several of his brothers and sisters-in-arms. The first among them are the tandem of Ke'Haan and Laira. It's not a pleasant visit... they aim to stop Hal, and he just isn't having it. He thrashes them both, all the while lambasting them for being loyal slaves to the Guardians. After the battle, the power hungry Hal takes both of their rings. I think this was a bone of contention among fans, not knowing whether or not Hal left them to float and die in space. I think that's been cleared up with Hal's redemption though.
We shift scenes to the Guardianzzzz... *snort*, sorry... the Guardians of the Universe. They are putting their misshapen blue heads together to figure out how to halt Hal.
Speaking of Hal, he's now tangled up in a strange octopussish alien parasite, courtesy of Tomar Tu (son of Hal's longtime Lantern buddy Tomar Re). Tu tries to talk Hal down, to no avail... Hal is able to finagle his way out of tentacles and blasts his buddy.
Hal's suddenly jumped by one of the wackier GLs (and that's saying something) Jack T. Chance! Jack is... well, truly a creation of his time... stubble, trench coat, chains, BFG... we know the type. Hal easily outclasses him. He snags both rings and flies off.
The more Lanterns get in Hal's way, and fall pretty quickly. All the while, Hal is thinking about how his power levels will be augmented to off-the-charts levels thanks to the additions to his jewelry collection. Those Lanterns are Kreon, Hannu, and Graf Toren... you know, those Lanterns...
The final Lantern to get in Hal's way before he lands on Oa is a woman called Boodikka. Hal apparently brought her into the Corps, and she will not relinquish her ring to him... claiming it is as much a part of her as her hand. Hal sees his best solution as taking her hand along with the ring. Easy peasy.
Back with the Guardians... they are considering the unthinkable to stop Hal in his tracks...
Hal finally lands on Oa, and runs in to his toughest fight yet... his old buddy (and drill sergeant) Kilowog! Got a bit of a good-news, bad-news situation for Kilowog... good news, he's one hell of a trainer... bad news, so good a trainer, his student is able to wipe the floor with him!
Hal triumphantly saunters over to the Power Battery... he doesn't just want more power... he wants all the power. The Guardians appear before him in a projected form, and try to reason with him one last time. Hal... again, ain't having it.
He leaves the Guardians with absolutely no choice... they must turn to the one man they feel can take Hal down... they turn, to Sinestro!
Okay, we're two-thirds of the way through... and, to be honest I don't think Hal has necessarily crossed the line into irredeemable just yet. Sure, he's beaten down many of his brothers and sisters-in-arms, stole their rings, and chopped off a Lantern's hand... but, nothing he couldn't charm himself out of, right? Eh, maybe not. All's I'm saying is though he may be mad with power, I don't feel that he's irreversibly evil just yet.
This entire issue was Hal's trip to Oa, and at no point did it feel dull or padded. This was wonderfully paced, and really gave us insight on the thoughts bubbling to the surface of Hal's noggin. We get the impression that Hal sees all the Lantern's in his way as being just as traitorous (to his ends) as the Guardians of the Universe. It would be difficult, in Hal's state, to separate the Lanterns "just following orders" and the Lanterns engaging in a sorta personal attack on his needs and desires.
Tomar Tu and Kilowog's confrontations with Hal were very powerful scenes. Hal doesn't see either of them as friends... just disloyal roadblocks who would rather blindly follow the Guardians than allow him to go about his business.
If I were to pick any nits... I gotta comment on the art. This is definitely a step down from Bill Willingham's work in issue #48. As much as I loath to "adjectivize" a time period, this issue feels very 90's. Still serviceable, but not up to the Willingham (and later, Banks) standard.
This is another issue that was never gonna be, if the initial solicits were to be believed. The original (Gerard Jones) Green Lantern #49 was supposed to be:
“Green Lantern is caught up in a battle raging between two equally powerful groups of Guardians of the Universe. Hal’s side loses, and the winners’ first act is to take away the power rings’ 24-hour time limit, and their yellow impurity. Their second act is to appoint a new leader of the Green Lantern Corps--Sinestro! This issue leads directly into the landmark Green Lantern #50, a major turning point for the series.”
Well, we do get us some Sinestro! Other than that... something competely different. Something with one of my favorite covers ever, to boot!
Definitely still one you should check out... I consider this entire era of Green Lantern as "must reading". This, like the issue prior is available digitally. As I mentioned about, in this weekend's Weird Science DC Comics Podcast, Reggie and I will be discussing Green Lantern #50, so if you're interested in our thoughts be sure to give it a listen!