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February 23, 2005

review: "Green Lantern: Rebirth #4"

GLantern4.jpgIt's hard to keep a good man down. At least that seems to be the message of this mini-series re-introducing Hal Jordan, the Green Lanterns and much of the mythology of the Lanterns themselves.

So far the story has been strong--though not perfect. Geoff Johns has had a difficult task: retell the Lantern mythology while revamping it so that everything that happened at the end to Hal (becoming a supervillian of nearly unstopable power) wasn't really Hal's fault. It's re-introduced the concepts of what the weakness of the Lantern's rings was caused by, what the weakness in the Corps was, and it's bringing back a number of Lanterns to the DC theater.

Johns did have an especially nice moment in the story involving Green Arrow. It's good to include him so centrally to the story given his close ties to GL: they were sort of the poor man's Superman/Batman team. But unlike Superman and Batman you never quite saw why these two would hang out. Bats and Supers begrudgingly see what they lack in the other, but what do GA and GL see? Green Arrow gets a peak inside the Lanterns' powers in this issue.

Given the scope of the story the minor issues with how it's told are forgivable (he's only got six issues). Less forgivable is some less than spectacular art by Ethan Van Sciver. Something about his style just doesn't fit the story, and I'm not sure what. I find myself looking at the book, especially key, emotional moments and thinking, "Oh, if only it looked a little cooler." The images sometimes look flat, and faces lose character (Hal Jordan sometimes looks like an aged actor). We'll see if that's something intentional by the end (after all, Hal has been DEAD).

I still recommend this, especially when it hits tradepaperback status. I think it will hold up really well as a compelte story.

(Recommended)

(review by Sean Ferrell)

Posted by sferrell at February 23, 2005 2:13 PM

Comments

DC offices, circa mid-70s.

++++

"World's Finest is a huge hit. We need another super-hero team-up."

"Ok, what have we got?"

"Green Lantern. He needs a partner."

"How 'bout Green Arrow."

"Why him?"

"I dunno. They're both green."

"Ok. Let's do it."

++++

Honestly, I could never figure out why the two of them hung out together. Flash and GL seemed a much more interesting pair to me.

Posted by: evebird at February 23, 2005 1:37 PM

In the end I like what Denny O'Neil did with the partnership... and it defined Green Arrow's character quite a bit (the "man of the people" motif) but I agree... the only thing at work was saving money on ink by choosing two characters who both wore green.

Posted by: s.m.f. at February 23, 2005 2:56 PM

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