When DC relaunched their books last year with the New 52, there were a number of books that I decided to drop. One of those books was Green Lantern. I just wasn’t enjoying it anymore, so it did not make the cut. However, when the chance came to read the first trade of the new series, Green Lantern: Sinestro, I decided I would take a chance on it. I had heard that the book had improved, and I’m here to say that it has. Green Lantern is a good book again, and if you dropped it like I did, you would be remiss in picking up the first trade.
The first thing to know about the story is that most of the multi-colored Lanterns are gone. Sure, the Yellow Lanterns play a big role in the story, but merely as the antagonists, which is what they should be. The story focuses on the main Green Lantern, Hal Jordan, and his relationship with Sinestro. Hal has been stripped of his ring, and Sinestro has been re-admitted into the GL Corps, which makes no one happy. Hal’s life sucks on Earth, what with the no superpowers, and getting evicted, and not owning a car. Sinestro shows up to offer Hal a chance at redemption, and shortly the two are off to save Sinestro’s home planet.
Writer Geoff Johns made the right decision to take the focus off the Red and Blue and Mauve and Chartreuse Lanterns and refocus on a smaller cast, particularly the relationship between Hal Jordan and Sinestro. Johns has done a lot of work to make Sinestro an interesting villain, and a lot of that work got sidetracked during the War of the Lanterns. Now Johns has a chance to continue his work on the character, taking him to new places that no one has taken Sinestro before. Hal Jordan also benefits from the refocus of this series. Hal was lost in the expansive cast that the book had prior to the relaunch, when he should be the main focus. Johns has transformed the book from a series that had too much going on, into a book that is telling a story that I can keep track of.
Doug Mahnke remains the main artist in the series, and he’s still doing a fantastic job. Mahnke has been drawing these characters and this world for a while now, and you can see that he is comfortable with them. Mahnke has become one of the preeminent superhero artists, and he’s an expert at large battle scenes. He can also handle the more intimate moments with the same skill. Mike Choi provides the art for the sixth issue, which is a stand-alone issue, and while his style is vastly different from Mahnke’s, it still works.
I’m happy to see that Green Lantern has gotten back on track, and now I want to see where the story is going. I hope that the story doesn’t get railroaded into another major event, and that this new status quo is given some room to breathe. I’m giving Green Lantern Vol. 1: Sinestro a 4 out of 5.