In Review: Green Lantern Corps: Edge of Oblivion #2

Some characters are no longer on the "Edge of Oblivion" -- they're in it!

The cover: The surviving members of the Green Lantern Corps are being pulled into a vortex. John Stewart is being turned into a corpse as he flails toward the object, while Guy Gardner and Arisia begin to succumb to its strength. Even the planet lantern Mogo is fragmenting before this celestial object. This action packed cover featuring lots of lanterns comes from illustrator Ethan Van Sciver and colorist Hi-Fi. I love the look of each character that captures their terror and the colors root this image in science fiction, with the electric greens and powerful oranges. This is a winner. Overall grade: A

The story: I’m still reeling from what occurs on Page 18. Writer Tom Taylor, are you sure you want to do that?! Wow. Again I say, “Wow.” This issue, “The Lost” starts simply enough. Mogo is calling all the lanterns to it as planet Perduron is cruising toward it. While the emerald masses swarm home, a group discovers the corpse of Mukmuk. Guy Gardner is furious at the lantern’s passing, blaming Kilowog for his peer’s death, though Arisia and Simon Baz tell him to calm down. “We don’t know what did this. You want to demonize everyone in the last city for this? Because lumping groups together and demonizing them doesn’t tend to end well for anyone.” Truer words were never spoken. Kilowog and his group fly off to find Ausras and Dismas, the giant protectors of Perduron, who say they are sorry for what’s happened to Mukmuk but they thought the lanterns would be better able to stand against Marniel, a rebel that lives within their world who wants to divide their last city. Their explanation of their long time foe is interrupted by something that causes the conflict of this issue. The story is split among three groups: those defending something, those fixing something, and those trying to destroy something. The first sixteen pages of this book cover familiar ground; if you’ve read any Lantern stories in the last five years, or longer, you’ll be reading a typical Corps story. However, on Pages 17 and 18 something happens. It’s this something that will have readers feeling just like Guy, though hopefully not with the same reaction. Okay, Mr. Taylor, you’ve got my full attention with this series. Now what? Overall grade: A-

The art: Having Ethan Van Sciver do the art for this book is a wonderful thing. His characters look fantastic, be they human, alien, or robotic. The opening shot of several lanterns rushing to Mogo is terrific. The shapes and sizes of these heroes flying to their rediscovered base are excellent. The power emanating out of them on their flight is spectacular. This is only Page 1 and an epic scale has been clearly established. The first panel on Page 2 has a great introduction shot of the main characters as they land near the body of Mukmuk. The panels that follow are not large, but are packed with a stirring amount of detail on the characters, such as on their muscles and faces, especially Kilowog. The design of Ausras and Dismas is intense, with the addition of black around the characters’ eyes and on their lips and chins making them slightly disturbing. Showing he’s not just a character artist, Van Sciver does insane work with constructs, such as what’s shown behind John on Page 9, and the device on 13. This story requires a great amount of detail to show what the lanterns are doing and Van Sciver makes it real. As much as I love the epic scale, it’s the final three panels on 19 that steal the show with Guy reacting to this issue’s surprise. The character goes through shock, pain, and resolve silently. The reader can watch the wheels turn within him and know that the action that’s going to occur on the next page will not be pretty, and it is not. Again I say, this work is wonderful. Overall grade: A

The colors: Jason Wright does a strong job on the book’s colors. The first page has several shades of green, for the lanterns, their energy, and the background, and it brings a level of reality to the work. The pale purple used for the setting on the next four pages allows the lanterns to stick out on every panel they are in. The work done to provide depth to characters is also good, with Kilowog and Guy being especially well done. The oranges and yellows on 15 – 17 really put some punch in to the explosive action that’s occurring, while the lack of colors on 18 a gut punch. However, Wright’s skills truly shine on the final page, with the background being ferocious and the shading on the characters’ skin and uniforms just awesome. Overall grade: A

The letters: Narration and dialogue (the same font), speech for the protectors of Perduron, sounds, story title, story’s credits, ring speech, screams, yells, and the fantastic tease for next issue from letter slinger Dave Sharpe. His story titles are always the best looking of all in DC Comics, as are his sounds, but the font he gives to Ausras and Dismas slickly set them apart from the lanterns beyond their size. Overall grade: A

The final line: A dramatic cliffhanger puts some punch into this Lantern tale. Some characters are no longer on the “Edge of Oblivion” — they’re in it! 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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