Green Lanterns #42 – Tim Seeley, Writer; V. Ken Marion, Penciller; Sandu Florea, Inker; Dinei Ribeiro, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Corrina: Corrupted Religion
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW
Ray: Tim Seeley’s run on Green Lanterns introduces one of the vilest villains of the entire title’s run in Green Lanterns #42, an issue that’s action-heavy but contains a few great moments and interesting character twists. As Night Pilot is taken away by the Order of the Steed, it turns out that her captor has been posing as a hero on Earth, and was one of her casual dates. Meanwhile, Simon and Jessica are preparing to make a move on the religious cult, but it’s been classified as a protected spiritual sector, which means the Green Lanterns can’t invade without proof. This means that Jessica and Simon need to go undercover as pilgrims to the Order of the Steed, which poses unique issues for both of them. Simon’s faith causes him a few issues with posing as a member of another faith, but he has enough confidence in his belief. Jessica, meanwhile, was not made for crowded religious transports. I think a lot of us can relate.
The third player in the invasion is Scrapps, who was promised her freedom for her help the last issue. However, once she found out that this was about slavery and not stolen goods, she insists on coming along and helping to complete the mission. Seeley does a good job with one of King’s most unique characters, making her an intriguing mix of genuine compassion and ruthless efficiency. This is a character I want to see a lot more of. The Order of the Steed, once the pilgrimage arrives, is genuinely creepy. The effect here is one of a twisted evangelical revival by way of Star Wars, with a ringleader exploiting his flock for everything he’s worth. However, once it’s revealed exactly what he’s done with the kidnapped heroes, the character transforms from stock villain to monster, and that sets up a compelling conclusion to this arc. There are heady themes of slavery and corruption of religion at play in this issue, and while that could easily fall flat, here Seeley excels.
Corrina: This has been an interesting arc, with so many concepts tossed into the story that they hardly all fit. There was the superhero dating app, the hint of something romantic between Simon and Jess, our Lanterns going undercover in the seedy corners of the galaxy with the most ruthless member of the Omega Men, and, now, a corrupt religious leader ready to make slaves of his new Earth superheroes.
There have also been some nice personal moments, especially in this issue with Simon and Jess on the transport, undercover, each dealing with their different reactions to the crowd. Since Seeley started on the title, he’s had a better handle on Jess but Simon is finally coming into focus, though I’m still less than thrilled that his primary motivation for becoming involved in the search for the missing heroes has been to rescue his girlfriend. (And that his girlfriend hasn’t been much more than a symbol for his motivation.)
But sometimes the tale moves too fast, as with this revelation of the religious leader (a Durlan?) who has been collecting the superheroes. He’s one-note, tossing the blame for his actions on others. Then the confrontation turns into a free-for-all. It makes for a fun action scene but I’d hope for more depth with this villain.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.