[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Robert Venditti
Penciller: Rafa Sandoval
Inker: Jordi Tarragona
Colorist: Tomeu Morey
As the Lanterns discovered last issue they are trapped on Xudar by a mysterious force. Before the greens and yellows can figure out what to do, they have to deal with the Xudarians who are still under Starro’s mind control. Utilizing what they know about Starro’s powers, they reason that Starro is still communicating with his spores that are contolling Xudarians and cutting off the communication is the key to stopping them.
John Stewart orders the Green Lantern Rot Lop Fan, who has a particular affinity for aural abilities to disrupt the communications. He is able to do so with a nifty play on the oath and a very big F# tone. This stops the communications and also reveals a clue to the barrier. It is not unlike glass. John and Soranik get a closer look and when they do they realize they are in one of Brainiac’s test tubes.
Meanwhile, Hal Jordan finally appears and seems to be about to meet his final reward for Lanterns in the Emerald Space. He is welcomed by none other than the person who inducted him into the Corps, Abin Sur (bet you didn’t see that coming.) However, he tells Hal it is not his time, and Ganthet and Sayd back on Nok are doing their part to rescue Jordan as well as summon Kyle Rayner, the White Lantern.
The plotting stands out here as we are treated to not one but two surprise appearances by characters we thought we may not see again in Kyle Rayner and Abin Sur. It was no secret that Hal Jordan was coming back, but having Kyle and Abin play a part in his turn is very satisfying. Also satisfying is the teamwork and camaraderie displayed by the Yellow and Green Lanterns as they try to work together. There are some growing pains, but there is a legitimate effort by both parts. Guy even gets a compliment from Tomar-Tu for his behavior, something Guy is not usually known for. It adds to the already complex nature of Guy Gardner’s personality. When John challenges Soranik as to why she’s trying so hard to help she responds that Sinestro was her father. This points to a deeper level of resonance as we look at our own lives and how we view our parents or children and feel partly responsible for their actions.
At first it seemed like this was a slow moving issue that was going to be Lanterns vs mind-controlled Xudarians, but it quickly moves in other directions. This conflict is the least interesting part of the issue and it takes more space than the rest.
Another fine issue as this space opera continues to expand and bring more surprises. It seemed like the journey was over last issue, but it is clear there isn’t a clear ending in mind as new possibilities continue to pop up, much to my surprise and pleasure.