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Sinestro #16

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By Cullen Bunn, Ethan Van Sciver, Brad Walker, and Jason Wright

Cullen Bunn made some news yesterday talking about the comic he’s no longer writing, Aquaman. He’s taking some flack for his comments, which is a shame. Instead, comic fandom should be focusing on what he’s doing right at DC. Mainly, that would be his work on this title. Bunn has long excelled with his depictions of anti-heroes. This title continues that trend.

Plot wise, Sinestro and some of his closest corps members make a visit to Earth. Normally, expectations would lead readers to think Sinestro came with sinister plans. Quite the contrary as the plot unfolds. In the place of a nefarious plot, we get Sinestro seeking advice and ancient wisdom from an old friend, Black Adam. The interaction between these two characters is engaging and nearly palpable. The respect and camaraderie oozes off the page. A true reflection of just how well Bunn understands these characters and how crisp the dialogue he writes truly is.  Come on, who wouldn’t read a buddy team-up book with these two? These characters have so much in common, yet they also have some contrasting points that are displayed quite well in this book.

Bunn has been slowly building up The Paling and the incoming battle between their leader, the Pale Bishop, and Sinestro since the first issue of this series. This issue particularly builds interest in just who is leading this emotionless cult. In a last page reveal, we finally get some indication of who the Pale Bishop may be. This reveal was a total surprise, and it does a great job of keeping Sinestro’s upcoming battle tightly intertwined with the greater Green Lantern Mythology.

Having Ethan Van Sciver draw Sinestro is such a joy. Sinestro is a character who has had countless looks throughout his history, with almost every artist drawing him in their own unique way. Van Sciver’s version is THE Sinestro version though. There’s no splitting hairs about this. The facial details Van Sciver depicts, not just with Sinestro, are expressive and tell a story without the need of words. Van Sciver also displays the physicality of Black Adam, which is contrasted with the arrogant yet intelligent demeanor of Sinestro. Brad Walker also adds some art to this issue, which is always delightful. It’s a shame the entirety of this book takes place on Earth, as Walker is one of the best when it comes to scenes set in space. Together, Walker and Van Sciver lay the foundation for a beautiful book. Picking up their baton and carrying it across the finish line is Jason Wright. As the colorist, he brings a sense of reality to these fictional kings. Whether it be Black Adam’s lightning, Sinestro’s yellow light constructs, or a scene in a deep, dark crypt, Wright brings everything together in a nearly flawless perfection.

This issue, even during its slower moments, exemplifies the allure of superhero comics. Great character interactions, ramped-up action, and a connection to a deeper, long-lasting mythology. That being said, this issue is not perfect; The finale, while great, did come across a bit rushed. Another spread would have truly done this book justice. That being said, Sinestro continues to be a book worthy of my money every single month.

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