Yes indeedy, it's THAT cover. I have to say however, that I rather enjoyed this slightly shorter story. The story was cut a bit, to make room for the Tales of Sinestro Corps, which is also fun. Anyway, we've all discussed this cover so let's just jump into the book, shall we?
Hello? That's not Ivan Reis's art! It is Daniel Acuna, and it is very very shiny. I must admit I was a bit nonplussed, but it isn't bad at all...just different. I actually rather like his portrayal of Hal, with his hair all mussed. Cowgirl looks pretty good too.
But back to the story. There on the front page is none other than Tom Kalmaku, aka Pieface, all dressed up in a suit and standing up to a bunch of rather snarky suits. Carol in the meantime, is up flying, and from her demeanor, having quite a good time of it. There is quite a bit of exposition on Carol's part, explaining her relationship with Hal, and what she has been up to lately, when suddenly...
...There is a giant PINK explosion, and Star Sapphire is in the plane and has Carol by the throat. The Star Sapphire then starts explaining that since Hal desires Carol, she is therefore the perfect host for the apparent alien that is Star Sapphire. This is a bit of a differing explanation of who and what the Star Sapphire is,but what the heck. The creature jumps from the original host Krystal, to Carol, leaving Krystal all naked and terrified and alone on the plane. Then there is a shot of Carol as Star Sapphire flying away from a rather large explosion. I guess things didn't go so well for the first girl.
Cut to a bar, where pilots are sitting around drinking and playing pool. Hal is shooting the breeze with Cowgirl, who is drawn rather nicely, with a cowboy hat and reasonable breasts. They are discussing the Ring, and it's also rather nice that Cowgirl seems to be pretty cool with the whole idea. Interestingly enough she says that she wouldn't fly with the ring either. It's very obvious that the two of them have a lot in common.
They're both pretty and stupid.
Sorry, that's not very nice on my part. I just think that flying without the ring is REALLY dumb. You wouldn't fly without a parachute would you? I don't know, maybe Hal feels that is going to impede his ability to fly too.
Another giant PINK explosion! Pink plastic Carol shows up and plants a big wet one on Hal. Oddly enough he does nothing to fight her off, but Cowgirl clocks her with a chair. At which point Hal changes into his Green Lantern suit and claims that there is enough of him to go around for the both of them.
I did find this funny however, as Hal flies off to deal with Carol, who he has punched into the
"Who IS that?" asks Cowgirl
"She always this bitchy?"
"Only when she's possessed by a telepathic alien crystal. Well, and when she doesn't have coffee." replies Hal.
"What does she want?"
"Um...one last fling, I think. But I can't do that...she's married."
"She sure don't act like it" harrumphs Cowgirl.
So Hal flies up and grabs Carol, but the crystal is beginning to wise up, and senses that Hal has the hots for Cowgirl instead, and dumps poor Carol in midair. Cowgirl is less than pleased, but doesn't have much of a chance against the telepathic alien crystal. Hal carries Carol down,and she manages to say that she actually has some useful information...that she knows what the Star Sapphire IS, and that it is from Sector 1416...they all are, The Zamarons, Sinestro...when the two of them are interrupted by Cowgirl/Sapphire.
Pink is NOT her color.
Then we have the "Tales of the Sinestro Corps", drawn by Dave Gibbons very nicely. Amon Sur wanders into the library on Qward and runs into Lyssa Drak, who keeps the book of Parallax.
She proceeds to tell the tale of Despotellis, the nasty little virus that apparently wiped out 85% of a sector.
I enjoyed the story and the art of course, but what I found REALLY interesting, is that Sinestro is apparently doing his level best to recreate the Sinestro Corps as a dead-on copy of the Green Lanterns. He just can't seem to let go. The whole shebang is as close to a carbon copy of Oa as he can make it, he's even trying to recreate a whole mythology for himself.
It reminds me of when Guy Gardner had lost his ring to Hal Jordan in GL #25, and then wandered around in his old GL uniform for quite a while, because he just couldn't let go of it. Eventually of course, Guy managed to move on, but I don't think that Sinestro has. I think that his is a VERY interesting development.