Green Lanterns #2 Review

Green Lanterns #2
Writer: Sam Humphries
Artist: Robson Rocha
Colors: Blond
Letters: Dave Sharpe
Publisher: DC Comics

The DC Universe has been under some drastic changes as of late, and one of the more effective groups has been the Green Lantern Corps.  Many of whom have been trapped in the Universe that existed before theirs, searching for a way back in the mini-series Green Lantern Corps: Edge of Oblivion.  Hal Jordan, the greatest Green Lantern of them all, has left Earth for the far end of the Universe to deal with his arch enemy, Sinestro.  Meanwhile, he left his home planet under the protection of the two newest Green Lanterns, Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz.  Leaving them to learn from each other as well as under the guidance of the long time friends, the Justice League.

Unlucky for the rookies though, the Red Lantern Corps of rage are planning an assault on Earth.  Crowds from all corners of the world are rioting under the influence of rage, while Simon and Jessica are uncertain of what to do and one of them has been lacking confidence in her abilities.

The Green Lanterns Rebirth special presented a promising start to a new series.  However that issue was co-written between Sam Humphries and the greatest Green Lantern writer of them all, Geoff Johns.  After which Johns left the book and solo writing duties were taken over by Humphries who has had a lot of hits, but also quite a few misses.  Following the Rebirth special the series kicked off and the first issue lacked narrative drive and a meandering plot.  It didn’t look good but fortunately, the second chapter in “Rage Planet” has progressed the plot as well as provided a bit of insight into Jessica mentality.

A large chunk of the issue is spent with Jessica and her struggling with anxieties and fear of becoming a Green Lantern.  Also dealing with her interacting with others, that being her new partner Simon and her sister Sara.  Her time spent with Simon was perfect and all that we hoped for, two hard headed egos butting heads.  While this was nice to see, hopefully in following issues we can see the rivalry from the other side of the argument.

Humphries provides some solid moments with Jessica and her sister bonding and we learn that Sara has been her emotional support for some time.  When the rookie Green Lantern is lost in life she can always look to her Sara for guidance.  She even goes to her in a subtle way to gain a stronger grasp of her new powers.  These scenes are genuine and create investment in their relationship, causing all the more concern when Sara is infected by the Red Lanterns rage virus.  Humphries showcased a strong understanding of that element in this issue and utilizes that well with an out of order story.  He also does a solid job of tapping into the emotional concept of the Lantern Corps, employing it as a force for both narration and character growth.

Artist Robson Rocha exhibits some solid pencil work in this issue with heavy details.  It’s also quite clear that Rocha thoroughly enjoys depicting the hellish world of the Red Lantern Corps, Ysmault in the opening pages.  He continues that gratification when illustrating Earth descending into rage.  Every person infected by the emotion looks possessed and intimidating.  It’s also interesting when Rocha is rendering Simon Baz, as he looks angry in every panel he’s in.  Almost as if the creative team is trying to hint at the reader that Baz is slowly succumbing to the emotional assault.

Final Verdict

Sam Humphries Green Lanterns is turning into a fairly solid series.  Sure its still early in the running, but he’s shown an evident passion for these characters, particularly for Jessica, and wants to develop them further from where they started.  Green Lanterns issue #2 is a nice balance of narrative drive and character development that also has solid artwork with some strong detail.

Score: 3.5 out of 5

Review by Eric Bradach

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