In Review: Sinestro #16

Two villains meet to stop a future threat and encounter an unexpected one. Absolutely recommended!

The covers: I cannot imagine two more opposite covers in the world for one issue than the pair that front this issue. The Main cover is by Brad Walker and Drew Hennessey. Its shows an angered Sinestro reflected in the chest of Black Adam. This is a super way to show both characters, but hint only at the latter’s identity. I loved the ire simmering out of the leader of the yellow rings, and the pose on Adam, complete with electricity sparking down from him, is terrific. This was the cover I picked up. The reason I couldn’t pick up the Monster variant for this book was because it went just too far for me. Did it make me laugh? Yes. However, I just couldn’t buy it. It’s a picture of Grumpy Cat drawn with Sinestro’s signature mustache, with the text “Nothing Frightens Me” above him, while below it states in larger font “I Am Fear”. This made my 13 year old daughter laugh, but I just couldn’t commit, I couldn’t. Karl Kerschl did an excellent job on the visual, but I can’t, just can’t buy it. Overall grades: Main cover A+ and Monster variant A

The story: This is one hell of a story! It’s set entirely in Sihruta, the capitol of the sovereign nation of Kahndaq, ruled by Teth-Adam, Black Adam, arch enemy of Captain Marvel. Sinestro and his corps have come because they seek information about the Paling, an anti-emotion religion from the farthest reaches of space. Rather than being reactive, like the now gone Green Lantern Corps, Sinestro wants his corps to be proactive and eliminate all those that he sees as possible threats to the sections of space that they protect. He’s heard tales that Kahndaq may have had contact with this group in its distant past and wants to know if Black Adam has heard such tales. This is the premise for this issue and it’s a good one. It’s fantastic to see these two villains interact with each other. Both are strong, smart, and could wipe the floor with the other, yet they need each other for a purpose. The action by Sinestro at the bottom of Page 6 perfectly shows what type of character he is, just as Adam’s reaction to Sinestro shows his character. Cullen Bunn is doing a terrific job on Sinestro and Adam, with the tension between the two just simmering under the surface of their words, but he also allows for occasional comments from the members present from his corps. Soranik’s reactions and others’ comments to her are the strongest moments of these supporting characters. When the two uber villains are alone, the writing really takes off, and what they discover in the final setting was extremely interesting. This was fantastic! Overall grade: A+

The art: Brad Walker and Ethan Van Sciver are responsible for the pencils on this issue and Drew Hennessy and Van Sciver provide the inks. Every page of this book looks great. The first page teases what one would assume is any prosperous country in the Middle East. The second page is a full page splash of the arrival of the Sinestro Corps with their leader magnificent leading them. All look intense as they gaze upon the country’s citizens. A comment by Sinestro in the third panel on Page 3 is a beautiful snarl. Page 4 is full page splash showing the arrival of Black Adam and he truly looks like a god as he arrives from on high. I love that the people smile at his approach and are then shown bowing before him. Pages 6 and 7 show a celebration thrown for the corps’ arrival, with Adam’s reaction to such festivities telling. What Sinestro does in the bottom of the pages is fantastic. The corps’s leaving at the top of 13 is just as impressive, with each character looking strong. Page 16 looks like something ripped from an Allan Quatermain or Conan tale, and that’s just the tone it should strike. Watching the villains deal with this treat was awesome. The top panel on 18 isn’t very big, but the amount of details that are in the panel, showing the aftermath of the battle, is incredible. The final page is a thrilling tease for next issue, with Sinestro’s reaction inspiring fear in me. This is beautiful work where the villains seethe power and evil. Overall grade: A+

The colors: The title character wears yellow and black, as does the guest villain in this issue. The setting is in the Middle East, in a wealthy country whose buildings are golden and yellow like sand. This story doesn’t seem like it will provide Jason Wright much opportunity for variety, but he does a sweet job on this book. The first page shows the utopia that is Shiruta, with a great sunlight effect. The arrival of the Sinestro Corps comes against a bright orange-red backdrop to make them stand out. Black Adam generates blue lighting from his chest, so he, too, stands out against the setting. Wright really shows his skills in coloring the faces of the villains, making both look very real. Wright is a knocking it out of the park. Overall grade: A+

The letters: Narration and dialogue (the same font), opening story title and credit, three sounds, the text of the final revealed character, and next issue’s tease are crafted by Dave Sharpe. I’m glad that he gave the final character a font different from the other characters because that’s what a character of that stature should have. The sounds are also well done and match the action that’s occurring in their panels. Overall grade: A

The final line: This was an outstanding issue of this series. Two villains meet to stop a future threat and encounter an unexpected one. Superior story and art. Absolutely recommended! 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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