By Cullen Bunn, Dale Eagleshame, and Jason Wright
Thaal Sinestro was once a stereotypical, mustache-twirling villain seeking domination for no apparent reason. Under the pen of Geoff Johns, Sinestro shifted into the gray area of an anti-hero with authentic and understandable motivations. Sinestro, as Hal Jordan’s main foil, helped lift the Green Lantern book into one of the best published by the Big 2. He even led the Green Lantern title for a period following the launch of the New 52. Still, expecting Sinestro to have his own book seemed laughable. Yet, here we are, with a shiny, new Sinestro #1 manned by Cullen Bunn, Dale Eaglesham, and Jason Wright.
Cullen Bunn’s script is crisp, nailing the dialog and characterization for Sinestro. It’s been months since readers have seen Sinestro (and quite some time within the DC universe as well). In that time, Sinestro has sought seclusion on a long deserted planet. Our first glimpse shows him broken, mentally weak. This is not the Sinestro we have grown accustomed to. Gone is the bright light of super-sized ego, and in its place we see a man (err, alien) humbled by his failures.
Bunn gives us a glimpse into Sinestro as he sulks around this deserted planet, developing yet another side of the complex character. And then things take a turn. Sinestro receives a visit from Lyssa Drak. She offers information that motivates Sinestro to flee from solitude and reclaim his mantle as the best ring slinger in the Universe. The impetus for the motivation ties directly to Sinestro’s broken state. It flips a switch, and, along with some new found powers of Lyssa Drak’s, brings Sinestro back to himself.
The art in this book may be stronger than the writing. Dale Eaglesham’s pencil work is solid, giving us a similar Sinestro that we’ve seen the last ten years or so. This hasn’t always been the case. Sinestro might be one of the most inconsistently drawn characters in comics. Eaglesham also does a good job with page layouts and line variation. It should be noted that Lyssa Drak’s appearance was the strongest part of the book. No artist has ever drawn her better. Colorist Jason Wright really elevates the art though. The mixture of darkness and shadows (bordering on a horror comic) and bright yellow and orange tones makes ever panel pop. Furthermore, his coloring of the outer space scenes is so appealing that readers might get lost just taking it all in. Instead of bleak emptiness, Wright weaves pinks, yellows, and greens creating a beautiful backdrop.
Overall, this is a strong start to the book. Bunn plants seeds for several arcs worth of storytelling, including a new group of bad guys to fight. This is key. A lazy writer would have instantly had Sinestro oppose the Green Lantern Corps, but Bunn shoots this idea down in an almost meta way. Bunn’s characterization is on point, showing the brooding, hyper-critical side as well as that of a megalomaniac. Bunn also nails the new characterization and powers of Lyssa Drak. These are greatly welcomed and present an evolution in lantern mythology. Let’s hope Bunn, Eaglesham, and Wright can keep up the great work with one of the best characters DC has to offer.