In Review: Green Lantern: Lost Army #5

The lanterns have got their rings back and make a jail break -- Great reading!

The cover: John Stewart, Arisia Rrab, B’dg, and Salaak have their rings and they’re breaking out of their prison cell in this cover from Guillem March. There’s a lot of glass being tossed about as they’ve shattered it and if readers look closely at the bottom they may be able to spy the reflected faces of some of their captors. Salaak is the only character in the group that’s difficult to see, and that’s a shame because the other three look pretty good. There’s a nice flaming effect coming off of each ring as the lanterns use them to bust their way out. The characters themselves are okay, but B’dg looks like the size of a large dog. The coloring is good with blues and greens used the most, and some pink at the bottom. Decent cover. Overall grade: B

The story: The first three pages flashback to John when he was in the military in the Middle East. He’s taking down an enemy, and has to kill him to escape his captors. Once free, he has a decision to make: the easy way or the hard way. His choice shows the type of man he is. In the present, the memory of the flashback echoes in readers’ minds as John is with his fellow captured lanterns, Salaak and Jruk, reassuring them that although B’dg doesn’t have a ring, he’s still a Green Lantern and he’ll get find a way to free them. In a nearby cell, Two-Six, Arisia Rrab, and Xrill-Vrek wait for the signal. Guy Gardner and Kilowog are in a different cell, and they wonder what’s going to happen when their cellmates, who they’ve beaten unconscious, wake up. They don’t have to wait long because the H’lvenite returns with rings. Cullen Bunn has the lanterns fight their way out of their prison and that’s the thrust of this issue. It’s not the cake walk the lanterns thought it would be, as they’re issues with their rings and the number of them. Kilowog has a good solution to one of these issues. One lantern is killed on Page 13 and my heart sank at this character’s passing. This individual had grown to be one my favorites and to have this character’s death was an emotional moment. The appearance of a pair of characters on 16 was surprising and terrific. The final three pages take the heroes on a quest to save one of their own, but it looks as if even their replenished rings will not be enough to save their comrade. Strong, action packed story from Bunn has all the hallmarks of a classic prison break, including the death of one character, but it leads to an even larger scale of action next month. Very fun! Overall grade: A 

The art: Doing both the art and the colors is Javier Pina. This book is beautiful in every possible way. That word may seem a little odd considering the first three pages deal with a marine behind enemy lines in the Middle East and the next 17 deal with an otherworldly jail break, but the visuals are just amazing. The opening page has an intense action scene with John trying to keep another from killing him. The pair are on the floor with John having the man in a headlock. After the fight has ended, the stance of John as he makes his exit wonderfully communicates how tired the tussle has left him. The mountains used for the setting are great and the colors from them and John’s uniform is top notch. To then move into an alien environment and maintain this level of reality is no easy feat, yet Pina makes it happen. Every alien is delightfully foreign, the energy coming out of the lanterns’ rings strong, and the coloring on each character stunning (with John and B’dg being unbelievably real). The death of one character goes from shock to sadness in one panel, and Pina pulls it off like the pro that he is. Someone at DC had better nail this man to another book, because if he were to go elsewhere it would be a tremendous loss. Overall grade: A+

The letters: Narration and dialogue (same font), a slight groan, sounds, character identification, story credits, screams, and next issue’s tease are all crafted by Dave Sharpe. He does a sensational job on all, with the sound effects, once again, being spectacular. Lantern titles need sounds and Sharpe delivers some super ones, WA-THOOOOOM! being my favorite. Overall grade: A

The final line: The lanterns have got their rings back and make a jail break — Great reading! Overall grade: A

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!” and he’s reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.

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