A new Lantern is poised to fill a recent whole in the line up. Who is this replacement and what is his story? Thankfully it’s Zero Month so we can have questions like that answered. Major Spoilers has the review of Green Lantern #0 ahead!
Green Lantern #0
Writer: Geoff Johns
Penciller: Doug Manhke
Inkers: Christian Alamy, Keith Champagne, Mark Irwin
Colorists: Tony Avina, Alex Sinclair
Editor: Matt Idelson
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
Previously in Green Lantern: Hal Jordan and Sinestro were handling themselves in a fight against the Black Hand, but once the Guardians showed up and took Black Hand for their evil plans, Hal and Sinestro were “killed”. As their bodies were sucked away, their rings combined back into one and zoomed away to find an acceptable candidate. And so it begins…
THE ABILITY TO OVERCOME GREAT FEAR
The statement that a Green Lantern ring says as it chooses the latest protector of Sector 2814 rings more true than it ever has when it slides onto Simon Baz’s finger.
As a Muslim-American who grew up in a post-9/11 America, Simon was subject to adverse treatment throughout his life. In the opening pages of Green Lantern #0 we see Simon and his family’s reaction as the Twin Towers were attacked, transition to him scrubbing hate graffiti off of the Dearborn Islamic Center the day after, then Simon and his sister being attacked five years later, and finally him being subjected to a “routine” airport security check ten years after that horrible day.
The rest of the issue is used as more of a set up for possible coming story lines, but also for the fateful moment that the Hal/Sinestro ring chooses Baz to take over the duties of looking over the Sector. In the wrap up pages it is fairly obvious that a worldwide (Justice League wide at a minimum) search for Hal Jordan is about to begin along with a call back/look forward of the Guardians horrible plans.
I haven’t read every issue of Green Lantern ever written but this maybe the best one that I have. Was it a perfect issue? No. There is that weird plot issue of, how do you steal a van that is completely empty besides a bomb and not notice said bomb? But don’t focus on that and focus on how they did more character building with Simon in the first two pages than entire issues can accomplish.
Doug Manhke continues on as the lead guy for the Green Lantern series once again handling the penciling. For the most part it is stunning work, with the first page being both heartbreaking and beautiful. The scene where the ring flies in and fixes itself on Baz shows Manke’s ability to draw more action oriented sequences well. Not everything was a good though, as I did have a problem with his mouths. All the characters here are either presented as tight-lipped or in different variations of a snarl. Other body parts all look great; he just has that one hang up to round out the visual aspect of the issue.
BOTTOM LINE: WELCOME TO THE FAMILY
So there is now another new Green Lantern on Earth. Of course this will bring up the argument of does there really need to be another one, but we should be focusing on the fact that Hal is gone (until he can come back to save the day) and we have the possibilities for a run of new stories from a hopeful dynamic character. Green Lantern #0 did a superb job of fulfilling the concept of the zero issue and gave us background on Simon before he becomes the central focus of the coming issues. With some nice pacing and a couple really nice beats, coupled with above average art, Geoff and company gave Simon Baz a warm welcome into the DC Universe and get 3.5 out of 5 stars.