Patrick: Last stands are interesting. Planet-wide last stands are fascinating. Basically any science fiction alien-invasion story comes down to Earth’s last heroes staging a nearly-impossible attack against the alien aggressors and winning. I mean, you can’t end your story with the world ending – that’s like the definition of a bad ending. But the Green Lantern universe is so rich with worlds that when one of them is in danger, there’s a genuine possibility that that world could end. So when the Reach set their sights on Odym, there was no guarantee of any specific outcome. Dramatically, anything is possible.
Though, the title of the issue “Beyond Hope: Conclusion” does advertise the fate of Odym rather explicitly. Kyle, Fatality and Arkillo (with Weaponer in-tow) all show up and battle alongside the Brothers of the Blue, but it is all for naught. Without even being able rescue their own power battery, the Blue Lanterns are forced to abandon their home. Once they’re safely in-orbit, Saint Walker determines the cause of the invasion: the motherfucker Larfleeze gave ’em up.
It’s a threadbare plot, but that’s all it needs. Guest artist Tomas Giroelo’s battle scenes convey the weight of this conflict well enough that even the simple trading of tactical advantage feels like a gripping story. Odym may be heaven, but war is hell.
I mentioned this last month, but I latched on to Saint Walker and the Blue Lanterns a long time ago. I don’t know if it’s just that he’s got a simple design that appeals to me or if there’s something specific about the Blue Lantern stories I’ve read in the past. Whatever the case, when Odym is in danger, I feel it right in gut. I mean, these guys are the embodiment of hope – HOPE – what’s sadder than seeing hope defeated?
Hey, I wanna talk about comic book series I’m not reading (yet). I saw that next month’s Red Lantern issue has Fatality and Bleez duking it out on the cover. Bleez was nowhere to be seen during this battle, and frankly, I want to know why. She recently become a sensible rage monster and is supposed to be supporting her fucking friends – so where is she? This isn’t just like she didn’t show up to Saint Walker’s oboe recital – she didn’t make an appearance at the END OF HIS WORLD. So the question becomes: is it worth my while to read Red Lanterns? I can usually shrug off that sort of thing, but there’s an additional rub. Glommy’s gone; his fate explored in Blue Beetle #9.
Erased is the word Kyle uses to describe it. The deed doesn’t take place within the pages of this series (and the character isn’t technically alive), so it’s sorta glossed over here. But this is totally unacceptable from a reader-perspective. Or rather, I’m not accepting it: I bought Blue Beetle 1-10 ($20 for digital). Let me ask you, Shelby – does that make me a sucker? I don’t know who the creative team is or what the critical word on it is, but I picked it up anyway. That’s a lot like how we discovered the GL universe in the first place. Remember? We read Green Lantern and then we were like “Oh, we can read this Green Lantern Corps book to spend more time with Guy or Kilowog or Mogo or whatever.” And that’s how I started reading Flash – because of the large role he played in the Lantern-centric Blackest Night. Were we suckers then?
Anyway, I continue to really enjoy this series. It’s all stories of simple heroics with a fine set of friendships at its core. Plus it does a nice job of leveraging the iconography that Green Lantern series are known and celebrated for. Check out this awesome hero shot of Walker – sure he’s about to give up the fight, but look how exciting this image is.
Shelbs, you’re new to this series, how’s this play to you? I hope you read at least issue 9 to prepare for this one, but either way, I’m really interested to hear what your reactions are to this one. Not much is written about this series and I don’t actually talk to anyone that reads it other than Drew, so we’ve been caught in our own little echo-chamber for a while.
Shelby: I really enjoyed it! You know me, I read all 10 issues before writing this, and I realized I was dumb for not reading it already. You and I came to comic books the same way, through the adventures of Blackest Night. The additional Corps were one of the things I liked the most about that event, and this reads like an extension of that.
Hope has always been an interesting aspect of the emotional spectrum. It’s one of the most powerful, but only when paired with a Green Lantern’s willpower. We’ve always seen how strong hope is in the hands of Saint Walker, but we’ve never seen it look so badass.
Is it possible that the venerable Saint Walker is susceptible to Red Lantern-level rage? He has been through hell and kept the hope alive, but his world was just destroyed, his power battery destroyed, will this be the one thing that breaks him? I don’t know, on the one hand I love what Walker represents, an incorruptible force of hope in the galaxy, and I would hate to lose that. On the other hand, though, how fun would a Red Lantern Saint Walker be? Answer: very fun.
I like this title a lot. I’m a big fan of team stories, especially teams who shouldn’t be together at all. And this team has no reason to work as well as it should; it’s people who represent the extremes of all emotions. I also like the way this title is fitting in with everything else happening in the Green Lantern (and other, I guess: Blue Beetle, really?) universe. And I’m really looking forward to seeing this big showdown with Larfleeze. How much of this big conspiracy is Larfleeze, and how much is Sayd? I had actually totally forgotten about her; is it possible she’s secretly working with the Guardians to bring down the Lantern Corps and pave the way for the the 3rd Army? Or is she actually motivated by her remaining feelings for Ganthet? That would really be a tragedy, since he can’t return those feelings anymore. I’ve got more questions than answers concerning this title, but I don’t mind in the least, since I’m having such a good time reading it.
For a complete list of what we’re reading, head on over to our Pull List page. Whenever possible, buy your comics from your local mom and pop comic bookstore. If you want to rock digital copies, head on over to DC’s website and download issues there. There’s no need to pirate, right?