Green Lantern: Rebirth #5 (April, 2005)
Writer – Geoff Johns
Penciller – Ethan Van Sciver
Inkers – Prentis Rollins & Mick Gray
Colorist – Moose Baumann
Letterer – Rob Leigh
Assistant Editor – Harvey Richards
Editor – Peter Tomasi
Cover Price: $2.95
Len Wein 1948-2017
Hey! Hal’s back… and he’s not pleased to see that Sinestro is too! As we left them last issue, Kyle and Ollie are down and out and ol’ Sin’s about to drop the hammer. Hal tells the baddie to stand down… and wouldja believe it, he refuses! Hal approaches… and gets blasted from the Watchtower for his trouble. Welcome back, buddy!
The next several pages are filled with fightin’. Topics discussed are the Green Lantern Oath, and how seriously one ought to take it. Sinestro is adamant that it was the Oath (and the Lanterns) that abandoned him… and not the other way around. They argue about vengeance… which, is kinda funny considering Hal was the Spirit of Vengeance, like five minutes ago! Sinestro calls Hal out as a hypocrite… and a murderer! A murderer that he made him!
We jump into a flashback of very early on in Hal’s Green Lantern career. This bit is basically Emerald Dawn II without the jail cell.
The fight continues… with the chat turning to the subject of Kyle Rayner. Sinestro still considers him an unfit “street rat” of a Lantern… Hal, on the other hand sees him as a man more than worth respecting. Kyle was the man to carry the legacy of the Corps on his shoulders when no one else would… and speak of the devil, here he is!
The battle culminates with Sinestro and Hal bumping rings… the force of which causes the yellow one to crack, and finally shatter. Sinestro vanishes… with a chuckle and a “welcome back” for Mr. Jordan.
Hal checks in with his ring and learns that Sinestro still lives and has snuck back into the Anti-Matter Universe. It’s here where we get our official Hal Jordan/Kyle Rayner introductory handshake. Hal tells Kyle it’s clear why the ring “picked” him… which, well… hmm. I seem to recall him being more a “any ol’ port in the storm” when Ganthet interrupted his back alley… whatever he was about to do. Either way, this was a nice little scene. Kyle tells Hal that he’s not like the other Lanterns… because he can’t overcome fear. Hal’s all “ya could’a fooled me” and off they go.
Back on Earth, Parallax has infected Ganthet… and ooh boy, does he look gross. Kyle and Hal arrive… and we get ourselves a neat, though brief, Green Lantern Corps reunion. Hal promises to explain later… because, they gotta go to work.
Say it with me… not so fast, kemo sabe…
Because the Justice League (and Batman) want those answers now. C’mon guys… there’s a Giant Yellow Fear Bug from Outer Space infected Guardian of the Universe standing like ten feet away!
Getting comfortable in his own skin!
This issue was a really good look at Hal reacclimating to flesh, blood and bone. I really appreciated that he didn’t automatically kick Sinestro’s butt too. That first scene of Hal getting blasted across the Moon was perfect. Hal is a headstrong and overly confident fella who was used to wielding the powers of Parallax and the Spectre. You gotta figure Sinestro would seem like small potatoes to him… so, it was nice seeing him get ka-powed!
There isn’t a whole lot to say about the middle portion of the issue… it was a fight scene. A beautifully rendered one with some great chatter, but still… a fight scene. I really did dig Sinestro reminding Hal that he’s a murderer. No matter what he does… how he redeems himself… he still committed murder. Sinestro’s own murder! We also don’t know if Parallax had fully sunk his fear-ful mandibles into Hal at that point either! That one might actually be on him.
We get a bit of revisionist history on Kyle’s Lantern origins. I’m pretty sure he was a “you’ll have to do…” type of find for Ganthet rather than the perfect successor for Hal, Guy, John, the Corps… you get the idea. Don’t get me wrong, still love Kyle, but he doesn’t need this revision. He was special because he is so different from Hal and the Gang. We didn’t need him to become just another soldier.
Let’s talk that ending. Ho-lee smokes, Batman you gotta chill out man. Like I mentioned above… Giant Yellow Fear Bug-Guardian standing literally ten feet away threatening to inflict fear on the entire Universe… I think Batman’s lecture can wait a few minutes! Oh well, seems horribly irresponsible and misguided, but whattayagonnado? It almost feels like they might be making all of the other heroes take one step back, so Hal and the Boyz can look better by simply standing still. They don’t need that… but, again… whattayagonnado?
Overall, great penultimate issue… all of our pieces are in place. We’ll wrap this one up tomorrow.