Comic Vine Review

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Green Lantern #23.2 - Worthy Foes Review

5

Mongul blasts his way into the New 52 commanding a new Warworld and seeking a challenge worthy of his power.

The Good

Jim Starlin returns to the character he helped create and he hasn’t lost a single step. This issue, like many in Villain’s Month, takes place both in the present and the past, flashing back and forth while Mongul narrates to an extremely captive audience. Admiral Pyri of the Oblivion Federation demands Mongul and Warworld’s surrender, but the massive warlord has other ideas. As he expounds upon his past, learning at a young age that might makes right and only the fittest survive, as well as leading a revolution that eventually begot his empire, he also displays the absolute power that he possesses both in Warworld’s might, as well as his well-known horticulture horrors: the Black Mercies. Starlin captures the well-supported braggadocio of Mongul without having him descend into simple villainy. He has a great sense of grandioseness and dignified power.

Howard Porter supplies the linework and does an absolutely incredible job at portraying Mongul as not only menacing, but charismatic and in-control in every panel he appears on. The incredible images of war and destruction that are splayed across much of the issue, showing the stark horror of Warworld’s atrocities and devastating tactics. This isn’t merely a flying sphere with cannons, it’s being led by a brilliant, sadistic tactical mind. Mongul displays a surprisingly wide range of emotions across his life, both present and past, and the line work is sharp and clear while the colors, supplied by Hi-Fi bring these all into stark relief. This is a surprisingly colorful book for how grim and dark the tone is, but it never feels disingenuous nor tone-deaf.

The Bad

It’s odd to include a villain that has yet to appear in the New 52 in Villain’s Month as we have no pre-existing connection to the character, and not necessarily any curiosity as to his past. It’s a good story, but as a result of both introducing and explaining who Mongul is, the flashbacks seem cut a little short. There’s enough to establish the character, and he’s not the most complex to begin with, but I’d have liked to see a bit more of how he managed to raise up an empire so soon after coming to power.

The Verdict

There are a few panels, one in particular, of incredible brutality and the book seems to be kept at merely a T rating because the violence is being done to alien beings, even if they’re extremely human-looking ones. This didn’t bother me particularly, but it bears mentioning. Ultimately, however, this is a great issue and a tremendously strong reintroduction of a character. I’m now anxious to see how Mongul intersects with the Green Lanterns and I’d love if Starlin (and Porter for that matter) were still involved somehow. Even if you have little interest in the Lanterns, this book is worth checking out as they play basically no role in it, and if you do, this issue will be introducing you to what will hopefully be their next great villain.

Posted by stormtrance1618

5 stars? I give it zero. I was bored with it and it's only related to Green Lantern by mentioning the Corps on the last page... DC took my money on this one...

Posted by dondave

Thoroughly enjoyed this issue

Posted by cc1738

Mongol is going to appear in Batman/Superman, so why is this titled Green Lantern? Shouldn't it be a Batman/Superman villain month issue?

Posted by spacemanspiff85

I liked this. From what I read of him before in GL and GLC he didn't seem to have much to him, but he came off a lot more developed and almost reasonable, in a sick way, in this.

Posted by Saren

Little too much exposition, but an enjoyable read. Better outing for Starlin than some of the other 80's/90's writers who've joined the game again have had (Wolfman/Ostrander).

Posted by Undeadpool

Little too much exposition, but an enjoyable read. Better outing for Starlin than some of the other 80's/90's writers who've joined the game again have had (Wolfman/Ostrander).

I'd lean toward agreeing that Mongul was VERY chatty, but I thought both Starlin and Porter owned it by making him the type of villain who would pontificate to a captive audience.

Staff
Edited by Herokiller12344

@undeadpool: Hmm, unnecessarily chatty, overpowered, loves to brag and main character material(which is not a bad thing) So basically, Starlin is continuing to make Mongul into a Thanos clone? That man really, really likes Thanos. I must say.

Also, I guess it's safe to say that Mongul Jr just doesn;t exist anymore.

Posted by Ando123

I really liked this issue

Posted by mightypug78

@stormtrance1618: too bad you dont live in presque isle maine, i wouldve offered to trade one of mine lol.

Edited by manwithoutshame

Loved it. Shows you why Mongul is such a force to be reckoned with.

Posted by Blackdog2009

I loved it!!!! man I would love for Starlin to write a Mongul ongoing, I would Loooooovvveee it!!!! And Howard Porter's art never looked better! Please DC, put these two on a regular book.

Posted by Bogey

Mongul is a great host.

Edited by batsymyplaything

@cc1738: I think you're confusing Mongul for Darkseid. It's Darkseid, who'll appear as the villain in that series, according to the last issue out.

As for this issue, I give it 4 out of 5. Very nice narrative of a character, who's more of a narcissistic compared to other villains. It seems that he'll be the villian in GL Corp series, so unfortunately, I won't be seeing much of Mongul in the foreseeable future. I got plenty on my plate already.

Posted by soumya
Edited by MartianManhunterIsBetterThanCyborg

Starlin should write a Martian Manhunter or Adam Strange book.

Posted by QuantumVertex

Utterly top notch story telling, it made me antsy to see a new storyline with Mongul involved. But it also made me curious about his eventual run in with Superman! Like has The Death Of Superman happened in The New 52?

Posted by lvenger
Posted by dondave

@lvenger said:

This good issue does come at the cost of New 52 continuity where Mongul was shown at the bottom of the Sinestro Corps battery in Green Lantern #5 - Sinestro, Part Five

I'ts not explicitly shown that it was Mongul IIRC, it could have just been an ordinaty yellow alien, not to mention it was only Mongul Jr, the Sinestro Lanterns had dealing with

Edited by cc1738

@batsymyplaything: No, I'm not. In the solicitations for Batman/Superman Mongol is the villain for issue 6. I know the difference between Darkseid and Mongol.

Posted by batsymyplaything
Posted by MonkeyToe

Probably the best Villian book I have read so far (except for the Forever Evil books which have been awesome).

Edited by Vootman

More Mongul! I loved it, and can't wait for him to reek havoc I the DC.

Edited by superior_prime_maybe

when did mongul become a green lantern villain?
sorry, im a lil blank on him

Posted by sagejonathan

I didn't think it was that good. It was alright; the art was superb though.

Posted by Superbat420

I thought it was great, Monguls a badass