Trial and Very Little Error
This issue begins with another really solid cover. I'm glad to see Pasarin on cover duty because now you know exactly what you're getting into. Not that complimentary artists can't work, but I think this is more solid. The balance is really nice, a lot of empty space for the logo, and the balance is surprisingly smooth despite the apparent crowding.
Pasarin's interior art continues to be great. It's got the perfect amount of detail that helps keep the tone just right for this space series, and the facial expressions are REALLY powerful, which is especially appropriate for an issue like this.
This issue has almost no fighting. There's a bit of action here and there, but nothing more than a single lashing out or defensive construct. Because this issue is about emotional fallout, and continued plot development. Not once did I think 'man, I wish there was more action in this issue.' This issue dug DEEP into John Stewart AND Guy Gardner. We got a sprinkling of the general opinion of the rest of the corps, and many times, characters speaking out were not just random lanterns, but ones who's names and personalities we already know a bit. John Stewart Killed Kirrt, because Kirrt was about to break. This creates a superb moral middle ground for the lanterns to debate. Between the lanterns accusing Kirrt of cowardice, to the Alpha Lanterns' cold logical approach to the situation, to Morro making sure all Green Lanterns receive proper burial regardless of any moments of weakness; and The Guardians manipulating to an uncertain degree to bring about the Third Army, and Guy Gardner unintentionally slowing their efforts by, amazingly enough, sewing cohesion and peace within the corps. Yes Guy Gardner is the voice of reason in this issue, thus he ends up arguing with just about everyone. But they all come about enlightened to some degree, and it really reminds me (not that I needed a reminder) why Guy Gardner is my favorite Lantern.
There's a few hiccups in Guy's stuff though. He makes a big speech to the guardians about how it seems the Earth Lanterns are getting picked off with Hal kicked out and Guy on trial; yet he doesn't mention Kyle's rogue status? Have the Guardians not mentioned this to any Lanterns? That actually might explain why they gave Oan tech to a bounty hunter in pursuit of Kyle over in Blue Beetle #9, but I still find it hard to believe Kyle wouldn't have gotten a quick word to Guy, or Guy wouldn't be curious or just... that NOT ONE PERSON would bring up Kyle in this whole situation. Plus I was a little let down that Guy built up to his big filibuster only to have the story skip right to the aftermath. I understand there's a limited number of pages, but still. I just wanted to see Guy tear more people new verbal assholes.
John Stewart's stoic acceptance of all the events is a great definer of his character. It does feel a little bit like it's rehashing that episode of Justice League, even the stage where the trial takes place has the same setup, but this time there's no confusion, no conspiracy in his actions (even if there might be in his sentencing) John did what he had to, to defend the corps. No mistake, no regrets.
The only other problem I noticed, but didn't PERSONALLY take issue with, was the way Guy and John were suddenly name dropping a whole ton of Pre-DCnU events. I mean, sure, I myself and EXTREMELY happy to see continuity observed, and how the characters can refer to these key moments of character or world development to draw comparisons and conclusion; but I can't help but feel that new readers will definitely be lost by these mentions of Xanshi, Mogo, Laira, Sodam Yat; etc. Plus, if the previous stuff is all the same, how come there are suddenly only five Alpha Lanterns? What happened to all the ones Cyborg-Superman converted? Maybe that specific story was retconned, seeing as how Boodikka seems to be full cold logical Alpha again?
In Conclusion: 4.5/5
Another extremely solid issue. We could use some more exploration of other Corps members, but in this storyline that's fine. Not EVERY issue needs ALL the Lanterns. Sometimes we just need to focus on a key few. This issue will definitely be more rewarding to long time fans, but certainly won't be lost on new fans. I'm hoping people haven't given up on this series because it's really gotten back to it's former glory.