Comic Vine Review

13 Comments

Green Lantern Corps #34 - Vengeance, Swift Review

4

Tragedy has struck John Stewart and left him with only one goal: finding who the Durlans took.

The Good

The last moments of the war with the Durlans became extremely personal for John Stewart and gave us quite the twist: they’d replaced his love Fatality at some point and been spying on the Corps from within. After its plans of becoming an unstoppable Daxamite succeeded, she was still brought low by a last-ditch gamble of the Corps and imprisoned on Mogo. Now Stewart tries to find out where the real Fatality is, but in finding her, he may have found more than he bargained for. This was actually an incredibly shocking issue, even moreso than when the initial twist was revealed, and it goes in a completely different direction than I expected it to. I give Va(aaaaaaa)n Jensen all the credit in the world for giving us a turn on the “damsel in distress” trope, particularly when she encounters her rescuer. It’s truly heart-wrenching, particularly for a character I’ve become so fond of over the last year (in both their cases, actually).

Bernard Chang’s visual style is exaggerated and filled with wild bombast, and it’s perfect for a hyper-emotional story like the one this issue tells. Anger, agony, determination all rampage across every panel, making a relatively short and compact story still have emotional resonance. The action is rare in this issue, a great deal of it occurring off or between-panels, but the issue never feels disjointed or disconnected, even if it doesn’t have a particularly smooth flow. Marcelo Maiolo’s colors are as deep, rich and dark as ever, perfectly establishing and setting the tone for this dour issue. The red-and-white panels also return at moments of drama and violence, but this time they’re intercut with white-and-pink panels that completely redress and recast previous moments in Stewart and Yssa’s life together over the last several issues, and even further back, making the tragedy even greater and the emotions ring fuller.

The Bad

As happy as I am to see an issue focus primarily on John Stewart, I have a hard time getting too excited as we’re about to enter into still ANOTHER Green Lantern crossover battle in two months, meaning that he can’t get too far away nor begin any significant stories without interruption and, frankly, I miss the Green Lantern recruits. It looked like they might have been replaced by a cast of sciencell prisoners who were conscripted when the Lanterns’ numbers were running low, and they needed some specialists, but most of them have left as well. It’s not a trend I’m happy with: characters are introduced, they’re developed amazingly well and economically, and then they either leave or are relegated to the background. As much as I enjoy this book, I feel like it’s full of untapped potential.

The Verdict

Jensen, Chang and Maiolo are all talented enough to keep me reading this book to see what happens next, even if I’m not thrilled about the direction that it’s going, and this issue stands as a great one-shot and a decent jumping-on point. There are still unanswered threads, Von Daggle aims to tie at least one of them up, and while another crossover may be the last thing I want to see at this point from the GL Universe, I can’t deny that this creative team will make it interesting and enthralling to read. And until then, it’s great to see some development and intimacy with Stewart’s character.

13 Comments
Edited by Golden Cod

The Fatality doppelganger sounds like DC's equivalent of Elektra-Skrull, though Secret Invasion itself may have borrowed some elements from the Durlan's first appearance during DC's Invasion! event. The Big Two never seem to get sick of riffing off each other.

Posted by ReyLeopard

Great issue! The creative team for this series is doing a wonderful job with John Stewart. Has he ever been portrayed this well in comics? I know he has done well in animation but most of the writers that handled him in modern comics have done a horrible job. Thank goodness for this series.

Posted by Mars8254

Can anyone tell me a good spot to hop on this series?

Posted by spacemanspiff85

Am I the only one who is really, really tired of the red and white panels?

Posted by Immortal777

I just realized that sometimes John's eyes are green like in the JL cartoon and sometimes they aren't lol.

Posted by brinkthemoviemyfavoritemovie

They're seriously going to have another crossover thing? After the complete nothingness that was 'Uprising'? Sheesh.

Online
Edited by FastestBlender

5.5 on IGN

"Jensen essentially reveals that Fatality never loved Stewart, and that he has been unknowingly raping Fatality for the entirety of their relationship. It’s enough to give any Stewart fans the heebs, and this also means that all of the time that has been used to set up this relationship and any attachments that fans may have built up towards this relationship has all been for naught. In addition to that, Stewart’s reaction to this news is ripped straight out of Star Wars Episode III, and in case you are wondering, that’s a very bad thing. Instead of feeling anything for Stewart, you’re left laughing at the absurdity of the scene. "

Posted by Captain13

This was a really solid issue--I especially loved the flashback sequences that helped tie everything together. It's great that John has been getting so much good development, and I can't wait for him to face villains and date women he never has before--just to add new sides and intracacies to his saga.

The art team continues to do a superb job as well.

Thanks for the quality review!

Edited by Captain13

@mars8254 said:

Can anyone tell me a good spot to hop on this series?

The next issue will probably be a good jumping on point as well since it will be the beginning of a new story.

Otherwise, I would start back at issue 21.

Posted by KASPERCOLE

I think this issue was very well written and drawn, but I don't appreciate the Fatality outcome/resolution. I hate doppelgänger stories where a main character is replaced and we're left feeling that some strides characters have made over the course of several issues are all for nothing.

I don't know if I'll stick around for the upcoming crossover story. I'm not enthused about "The New Gods" at all!

Posted by Harryvine

You have to wonder how much they HATE John Stewart over at DC. I personally perceive him to be Hal's equal yet he's constantly treated like his bitch. Hal is a grade A stubborn douche while Stewart is the epitome of everything that is required to be a hero. Hal always gets all the glory, the girl and praise for not tying his shoes together while Stewart does ALWAYS does the heavy lifting. They even tried to kill the bastard earlier this year. Stewart is the cause of the planet Xanshi dying and carries that burden like it happened yesterday. Meanwhile Hal killed GL's and terrorized the DC universe for 20+ years as Parallax. A display of zero willpower which caused the Hero community to question what kind of man Hal really was. (PS - Stewart tried to recreate the planet Xanshi causing his ring to overload because his willpower exceeded the rings capabilities!!!!!!!). Then Geoff "I Hate Batman" Johns solved that mess up with a single sucker punch to Batman. Whoa...he must be back if he could do that. Reputation restored.

This is my interpretation of the last cross-over story arc:

"John, take some prisoners and solve a problem that's clearly out of my skillset (communicating, thinking, breathing through his nose) while I pretend to be a leader. Kilowog, you trained me yet I'm somehow better than you. Want to supervise this stupid poozer for ol' time's sake? I'll pretend to lead but you whisper the correct answer in my ear while we protect lava lamp world." Stewart does EVERYTHING. Hal makes the greatest emerald igloo of them all.

Yes I am venting. I'm just tired of Stewart getting 2 scoops of poop (He literally got dumped twice by the same chick the same way in back to back issues) while Hal gets a to go to Six flags because of his daredevil dipshit "leadership". If the Green Lantern Corps wants to regain respect throughout the galaxy then put an actual leader in charge. I swear the Green Lanterns are pretty much the Jets led by Rex Ryan. Push John Stewart. It would be a nice blend of diversity and common sense.

Posted by Dernman

^^^

Posted by andrewwann7

@mars8254: Either right now, or at the start of the Uprising, but if you are reading Green Lanter or GLCorps, you pretty much have to get them both because they're both very important to each other, I see that as a good thing though, its like two parts to a show.