In Review: Green Lantern: New Guardians #34

I'm going to pretend this never happened.

The cover: A Psion, half lizard and half morphing machinery, holds the Guardians in its clutches, tentacles, etc., and only Kyle Rayner makes it recoil at the power of his white light. Good cover by Brad Walker, Andrew Hennessy, and Wil Quintana. The layout is good and the coloring is really exceptional. Having the while lantern light make the villain and his prey come into focus is nice. Excellent use of shadows and I like light the lens flare effect coming off the center of the image. Very realistic. Overall grade: A

The story: This wraps up the previous two issue Psion reboot issues. These DC baddies are scientific searchers of perfection that vivisect all forms of life to discover some truth about them. They’ve caught the Guardians, who in a revealed twist from last month, are responsible for their creation. Now that they have their creators, they’re about to slice and dice them. However, Star Sapphire and the White Lantern are proving tough to catch. Justin Jordan’s story “Sacrifices” opens with Guardian Quaros revealing himself to be alive to his comrades. He communicates to his brothers and sisters, via thought, that the Psions must be stopped, starting with their leader, who is engaged with Kyle and Carol. As the three fight, a small door opens in the Psion’s armor and a small box drops out making pinging noises. I thought that Clive Barker’s dimensional hellions would be making a visit, but looking closer I realized it was a Mother Box. That plot thread is “To be continued…” The Guardians are able to break loose from their bonds and converge to find Quaros. They aren’t going to be happy. There weren’t any surprises in this story, sadly. Carol is able to evade capture in the most obvious ways, with a cliché reaction from her, and the solution to stopping the Psions is fairly rote. Nothing new is learned by any character. There is a loss, but one that could be easily erased in a variety of ways. This issue and the previous two were much ado about nothing. Very disappointing. A terrible relaunch of one of DC’s great 1980’s races. I’m going to pretend this never happened. Overall grade: D

The art: This is solid art by Brad Walker with Rodney Buchemi on pencils and Andrew Hennessy, Rob Hunter, and Buchemi himself on inks. The shots of outer space look amazing. The first panel on the first page shows this with a spectacular image of the Psion ship and a gazillion stars and planets around it. The characters look great. I’m always impressed with the line work on the characters, especially in the faces. Characters are shown from a wide variety of angles with superior emotions and they always look excellent (Page 4, every panel; the top of Page 9; the close up on 11; the third panel on 12; the scream on 16; and the center panel on 17). I’ve gone off in previous reviews about the design of the Psions. I really dislike it and I’m still a hater by the end of this issue. Because of the wild panel arrangement, which is very good, some actions are hard to decipher due to the panel’s size or shape. This is the case with Pages 2 and 3. I’ve looked at them several times, but I can’t understand where the Mother Box came from in relation to the Psion. I’ve given up and am just rolling with it. Still, there’s more to like than dislike in this issue. Overall grade: B-

The colors: I was very impressive with Wil Quintana’s work on this issue. When Carol or Kyle is using their ring it’s powerful, as it should be. When the Guardians are throwing their collective energies around it is also impressive. The interiors of the Psion ship are dank and dark, but Quintana makes all the key characters vibrant. The vast expanse of space is shown often and he makes it look beautiful. A great job. Overall grade: A  

The letters: Dave Sharpe provides dialogue, title and credits, Psion speak, and a few key sounds. It’s nice to see aliens getting their own specific font to be truly alien. I wish this practice were done to more aliens in comic books. Overall grade: A

The final line: It looks good, but the story is dreadful. This should be read like watching television with the sound turned off. Overall grade: C-

 

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!”, he reviewed comics for TrekWeb, and he currently reviews Trek comics at TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for two 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.

 

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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