By Robert Venditti & Billy Tan
Lights Out was a great ending to Venditti’s first GL arc. If you haven’t read it, go get those back issues. Now that things are shook up and there’s a new status quo, Venditti has his stamp all over the Lanterns. This is officially his playground.
And what a playground it is. One week after Lights Out concluded, Venditti has already established some new and useful conflicts. Now that the Lanterns are aware that their use of the emotional spectrum is finite, Hal decides to pass a law – if you aren’t a Green Lantern and we think that you’re a jerk, you will be arrested. This has all sorts of metaphors for American politics thrown in, obviously. Does Hal have the right to do this? These are answers that more than likely will blow up in Hal’s face and it will be a thrilling read when it all comes crashing down.
Hal is quickly losing allies and seems to have come down with a case of “Parker Luck.” Venditti’s Hal is brave, strong, and compassionate, but is also stubborn, jealous, and just deeply flawed. This is making for some of the best superhero character work in a long time.
Billy Tan’s art is well-suited for a GL title, but only when he’s on top of his game. This is not a good example of his best work. Most panels looked rushed and sloppy. However, he nails Kilowog every time; so why does Hal’s head appear deformed in 90% of the issue? This work isn’t so bad that it detracts from the great story, but it is a little irritating since we know that Billy Tan can deliver the goods.
The time is now to jump on the GL bandwagon. For whatever reason, this title doesn’t get the credit that it deserves. Venditti has laid the groundwork for fantastic characterization, so it’s only going to get better from here.