Saturday, February 4, 2017
Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Rebirth #1
Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Rebirth #1 (September, 2016)
Writer - Robert Venditti
Artist - Ethan Van Sciver
Colorist - Jason Wright
Letterer - Dave Sharpe
Assistant Editor - Andrew Marino
Editor - Mike Cotton
Group Editor - Eddie Berganza
Cover Price: $2.99
Hot damn but that's a long title. Doing some "for fun" catch up here today. Thus far I have bought every single DC Comics with the word Rebirth on it. Got a killer deal on the bundles at Discount Comic Book Service... hell, been using them since the dawn of the New-52! So, what this means is I've got more books to read than minutes in the day to read them. There are entire series' that I haven't touched yet... including the one we'll be discussing today.
When DC Comics announced the first run of Rebirth-branded books I was pretty annoyed not to see a straightforward Green Lantern title, instead we've got two... Green Lanterns and this one. Anyone who knows me knows I'm almost unbearably attached to my "full runs" on books... so when Green Lantern (vol.5) was relegated to the dump-bin, I wasn't entirely sure which new title would be the one I considered the "real" Lantern book. Hell, I still don't know which one's real-er, but that's on a count of my not reading them.
Gonna start fixing that today.
We open in Space Sector Zero where we see the floating remains of Oa. Suddenly the bits are pelted with yellow energy, and we see the planet remake itself as not the home of the Green Lantern Corps, but the Sinestro Corps. On Warworld, an aged Sinestro is approached by Lyssa who informs him that everything is his to command, so spake the Book of Parallax. We learn that the Green Lantern Corps has vanished, leaving Sinestro without much of a satisfying "win" here today.
We shift to Space Sector 563 where floats a dead planet. We get a monologue from Hal Jordan as green energy swirls and crystallizes. Then we see him... and he looks quite a bit different than the Green Lantern of old! I will concede that I only skimmed the last two issues of the preceding volume of Green Lantern. I was so let-down by the promise of a Hal vs. Parallax Hal battle in issue #50 that I kind of zoned out for the capper. Hal as an energy-being is wholly new for me.
From here we get a bit of a Hal Jordan/Green Lantern Corps history lesson... from Hal's father's death to the recent Green Lantern Renegade/Gauntlet of Krona story arc. We next learn that the Corps is in fact missing in action... this is follow-up from the Green Lantern: Lost Army and Green Lantern Corps: Edge of Oblivion miniseries'.
Hal produces a chunk of glowing green rock from the energy glut and places it down on a construct of an anvil. He then forms an energy hammer, and prepares to wield it. When he does, it reverberates throughout the universe... the Green Lantern Corps, the Guardians, the White Lantern, and the newest Green Lantern Jessica Cruz are seen reacting.
Back on Warworld, Sinestro descends down a long and winding flight of stairs to greet an old ally... Parallax itself. Not Hal-as-Parallax... the actual giant yellow fear bug. He asks it to grant him a final wish... everything. Least he's realistic, right?
While this is going on, Hal continues his hammering. Members of the Indigo Tribe, Larfleeze and Carol Ferris can feel Hal's presence. When he is done, what he has left is a Green Lantern ring... one he forged himself, which is a feat previously thought impossible. He's also no longer an energy-looking fella... he's back to flesh and bone. And so, he tosses Krona's gauntlet and slips on his new piece of jewelry.
He says the Green Lantern oath and is now seen in costume. He knows he's got a lotta work to do... but he's confident. He looks into the nothingness of space and thinks it's about time he got back to raising a little hell.
I really quite liked this... and boy is it gorgeous to look at!
This did a really good job of making me interested in this franchise as well as Hal Jordan. I gotta say, I was just barely holding on during the DCYOU Renegade stuff... and was really only reading it for the Parallax circa-Zero Hour bits. Those were what really kept me interested. We were promised a confrontation in issue #50... which was, ehhh... underwhelming, to say the least. Really poorly handled, though, to be fair... I'm guessing the pending onset of Rebirth may have had something to do with all that.
I didn't know a whole lot about Hal as an energy being, and to be honest, I had (and have) zero interest in anything of the sort. I'm glad that was (apparently) done away with here. I'm happy to have Hal as Green Lantern... but, whatever that gauntlet-wearing see-through dealie was, I want no part of that.
Now, had I been a new reader... I think I would have been "comfortably lost". I feel like we get enough here to bring us up to speed... at least as "up to speed" as we need to be at the moment. The flashback page here was really well done in that it picked and chose its moments to highlight... Martin Jordan's death, Abin Sur handing over the ring, the Green Lantern Corps, and the Renegade bit. That's all we really need to know at present... nothing confusing... we don't need to mention the patchwork Mosaic world, or Emerald Twilight here... not to say those didn't matter, it's just not necessary for this issue.
Overall... very pleased with this, and I'm looking forward to trudging my way forward through the series... at this rate I'll get through the first storyarc by the Fall. Since this is a new(er) book, it is available digitally, and has been collected. Can't speak to the quality of subsequent issues, but I definitely dug this opening chapter.