Green Lantern - New Guardians #21

by mahargen on June 19, 2013

Writer:  Justin Jordan    

Art:  Brad Walker

    The next chapter of the Green Lantern saga continues.  In a post-Johns world, we’ve seen the first pair of titles, Green Lantern and Green Lantern Corps falter.  However, the new creative team of Justin Jordan (Team 7, Deathstroke, Superboy) and Brad Walker (Guardians of the Galaxy) has stepped in and saved the family of titles this week and remains on my pull list.  

    It’s obvious that one of the big plot threads rolling through the GL titles for the near future is going to be how the universe now looks at the Green Lantern Corps.  This was touched on last week in Corps #21, but comes fully forward when Kyle Rayner comes to fisticuffs with the newly introduced character Exeter, the self-proclaimed guardian of the Anomaly.  The Corps has been somewhat busy with internal matters in recent months, and the denizens of the universe have take notice.  It’s well known that the Guardians from Oa went rogue and had to be dispatched, so mistrust of the New Guardians is justifiable.



    Kyle Rayner, the singular White Lantern, has found himself as an escort for these New Guardians at the behest of Hal Jordan, newly minted leader of the Green Lantern Corps.  The way Jordan shows their relationship really nails the characters.  Again, elements of Vendetti’s Green Lantern title seep through with Hal and Carol’s relationship being on the rocks.  This is one of the most frustrating things about the new direction of the Green Lantern titles, as it seems to contradict how Johns left things after Wrath of the First Lantern.  The interconnectivity that has been present through all the recent crossovers is still apparent, but it seems each title will carry on its own storyline for now, eventually resolving into the attack on Oa by the mysterious Relic who we glimpsed in Green Lantern #21.  

Relic, a new character in the New 52, makes his first real appearance at the end of this issue, when he emerges from the Anomaly, a cyst on the universe that exists because of whatever universe was here before the present one (a throwback to pre-New 52 DCU?).  The Anomaly interacts with Kyle’ White Lantern abilities, and we’re introduced to the new Big (literally, the guy is pretty huge) Bad.

Walker’s pencils are for the most part solid.  A few expressions early on were iffy, but the man has solid space-character experience so I look forward to how he portrays the characters Kyle and the New Guardians encounter.  I love his design on Exeter, and I’m anxious to see more.

While not much happens in the beginning of this storyline, the atmosphere is set up for what is to come.  The universe does not trust the Guardians.  Hal and Kyle don’t trust the Guardians.  Some high-level destruction is coming down upon Oa in the near future.  Will the New Guardians go the way of their predecessors, or will they ride in and aide the Corps in saving the day?  This issue gave me hope that these stories can be told well.  I hope the newly Guy Gardner-infused Red Lantern issue matches the success of this issue and the other titles take a few cues as well.  The elements are all here for a great Green Lantern story, they just need to be put to use.

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