Green Lanterns #44 – Tim Seeley, Writer; Ronan Cliquet, Artist; Hi-Fi, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Corrina: Past is Present
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW
Ray: The next arc kicks off in Green Lanterns #44, revisiting the most traumatic part of Jessica Cruz’s origin – the violent attack years back that killed three of her friends and left her a shut-in due to trauma. We know very little about the circumstances, though, besides the fact that it happened in the woods and the attackers looked like the people generated by her ring last issue. The issue opens with a segment between Jess and her therapist, where she dodges every question about what she remembers and can’t get out of there soon enough. It’s clear that this is the one step of her recovery she’s not ready to take. She’s called away to space, where she and Simon learn that their deadliest enemy, Singularity Jain, has returned. This sadistic intergalactic demon lawyer has now taken on a new form – a robotic attorney helping a former war-bot maintain custody of his daughter.
One of the things I love about Seeley’s run is how he embraces the bizarre nature of DCU space. This techno-organic planet populated entirely by mechanical beings reminds me a lot of things we’ve seen in Jeff Lemire’s Descender, and it’s a very different planet than any we’ve seen in Green Lanterns before. Despite the fact that it’s basically populated by Transformers, the conflict of this single father trying to turn his back on his past, and Singularity Jain’s manipulation of his desires, is surprisingly powerful. However, the crux of this issue is the reunion between Jessica and Singularity Jain, as she picks right up on manipulating Jessica’s fears and desires for answers, with real consequences for Jessica’s life back on Earth. Singularity Jain is probably the defining villain of this run, and it seems like this second arc will live up to her debut. And while Seeley’s take on the cosmic DCU is his strongest point, he’s showing his skill when it comes to the characterization of his two main Lanterns as well.
Corrina: This comic draws on the story of Jessica’s origin and the trauma that kicked her anxiety into full gear.
The problem is that I’m only familiar with Jessica from this series. I’d read only bits and pieces or her origin previously, though I know she got her ring from the Crime Syndicate’s Green Lantern. As a result, I find it odd to suddenly have Jess struggling with a trauma that’s never been mentioned in the three + years of this comic. There’s nothing wrong with going back to her origin but I would have liked more grounding in what happened before as it’s not completely clear in the context of this story.
I liked the action a great deal and Seeley’s imagination in using alien planets and civilization that truly feel alien, such as the techno-organic beings. Singularity Jain remains an intriguing foe, with her powers seemingly vast, but mostly in her ability to make her targets doubt themselves. (She has a bit in common with the Judge over in Nightwing.) However, given how Jessica has grown throughout her series, it will take me a bit longer to buy her giving into Jain’s powers. We’ll see what happens next issue.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.