On the heels of Issue #4's revelations (that powerful enemy Riot is Commodore's father) comes the beginning of a new arc -- this time, set in space. A new behind-the-scenes villain is running a dangerous and greed-fueled operation, and the team rockets out to stop him. Naturally, there's a surprise waiting for them.
At first glance, some elements look like excess for the sake of excess -- on-board swimming pool in the team's shuttle, anyone? But it's anything but wasteful; these samples of the team's extreme wealth aren't just there to add color, they fuel action later in the issue (conveniently, that pool provides extra ammo for Icicle!). It's this consistency that makes the book feel tightly planned, and the story feels more polished.
I'm enjoying Art' and Franco's sense of humor, as it's infused into Green Team characters. Sure, they're in a serious situation, but it's tension-breaking and fun to make jokes about green flames on the rocket or have Icicle wisecrack about his power set.
Ig Guara gets an opportunity to flex some range on this issue, drawing a variety of expressive faces and dynamic poses, and concepting out the stasis pool and other futuristic accoutrements of the Green Team lifestyle. The scenes involving Icicle have especially impressive panel composition -- layering sequences over giant splashes makes the splash action seem cinematic and big and the panel action feel dynamic and punchy.
The creative team is doing a great job of handling the parameters they've been given, but the high concept of "ultra-rich kids who decide to be superheroes" runs out of steam after a little bit if there's nothing else that's particularly engaging about their story. Bruce Wayne is ultra-rich and can afford his dual identity because of it, but the Green Team members lack the compelling history and core motivations that Batman has. For all of their gadgets and teen angst, the Green Team doesn't pack the same kind of "interesting" factor as other heroes who fall into the vocation via wealth. (GREEN TEAM is wrapping in Issue #8, so this will likely be the final arc.)
While it's hard to keep a somewhat superficial concept moving forward, Art and Franco have been doing their best to drive the story into bigger, more exciting territory, and using the book as a vehicle to tell action-packed stories infused with light humor. As the series winds down, we get to enjoy a walloping arc with a space setting, a greedy villain, and powerful henchmen (and we can look forward to future Art & Franco fare when GREEN TEAM wraps in early 2014).