Hal Pictures Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!: Green Lantern Corps #29

Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!

Now with Guy Gardner's Seal of Approval!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Green Lantern Corps #29

Look! It's Guy and Tora! Oh, and some other stuff happens too.

Green Lanterns

As we begin our tale, the Guardians are cranky. Well, to be honest, just ONE of the Guardians is cranky, and that is our own little scarred whacked-out-of-her-doodle Guardian. The Zamarons have been busy lately, working on their own powers and creating their own purple/pink crystaline power battery, and the scarred Guardian thinks that they are just FLAUNTING their intentions in her face. The scarred Guardian, in my humble opinion, needs to put on some nice soothing music and take a bubble bath.

We then turn to Kered and Miri, a charming young couple who are on their honeymoon, and just gushing to each other about how happy they both are, and will remain for the rest of their lives. Oh...you know this won't end well. And of course it doesn't as their ship is attacked by a ravenous Mongul. Turns out that Mongul is really really really hungry, and eats all of their food. That's all he was really after, and flippantly cracking the space helmet of Kered is just his happy way of saying thanks for the grub. He burbs and leaves poor Miri holding the body of Kered in her arms.

Meanwhile, Mattoo, his pregnant wife and KT21 are searching throughout Sector 1114 along with Kyle and Natu for the renegade Sinestro Corps member Kryb. You remember Kryb, she's the one who had that cage on her back and imprisoned the babies of slaughtered Green Lanterns. The Lanterns feel that she may be the one behind the recent massacre of the Rookie Green Lantern's families,and NONE of them can feel at ease knowing that she's still out there lurking and targetting Lantern relatives. Which of course ties into the whole love theme.

And of course, we have Guy and Tora having a romantic dinner together in a cool green space bubble just outside of Oa.

Guy Pictues

Guy's been pouring the wine and plying Tora with appetizers. He's also trying...in his own inimitable way...to ask her something. Tora is all interested and encouraging, leaning forward and holding his hand...and then he blurts out the bit about "cohabitate". You can just see the disappointment in Tora's face. I think that she was hoping for a little bit of "...come live with me and be my love, and we shall all the pleasures prove..." instead of ..."cohabitate". She even asks him "like Lovers do?"

Oh Guy.

Guy pictures


At least he's bright enough to realize that his big pronouncement is going over with a thud. A palpable thud. And really, who can blame her? He's about as romantic as a chain saw. Tora gently tries to explain her feelings and as usual, he only hears what he wants to hear.

Guy pictures

It's actually rather nice to see that Tora has managed to grow a backbone during the time that she was dead, because she doesn't let him walk all over her. I love the bit where she freezes the table. However, emotionally,things seem to be at something of an impasse.

Two days later, on the Mongul-ravaged ship, Miri is about to lose her life-support and join her dead lover, when who should show up but the Zamarons! They tell her that her love is pure and intense and can be used for a greater purpose, so of course she puts on the ring. She's encased in crystal, and the transformation actually seems to be quite painful.

Green Lanterns

Cool, eh? Bless his little heart, Pat Gleason put her in the old-fashioned Star Sapphire costume instead of the Ivan Reis one. I actually quite like her little helmet/hat thingie, it's rather retro. she has interesting ears too.

Saarek in the meantime is still wandering around trying to find the dead Anti-monitor as the scarred Guardian asked him to do. The scarred Guardian is up to all KINDS of shenanigans!

Guy has come to see Tora off, as she needs to go home. He's still pouting of course. We do get to meet Symon Terrynce, her escort, and a rather chatty fellow. With his usual incredible sense of timing, Salaak sends Guy a message.

Guy pictures

Awwwwww...!

Finally, Guy storms off to meet with the Guardians, who have also summoned Arisia and Yat. Turns out that they are all going on a diplomatic mission to Zamaron, and they want the threeof them as escorts. Oh...THIS will be interesting!

I've already read this a number of times, because I was so interested in the Guy/Tora interaction. On the face of it, it looks as though he asks Tora to shack up with him, she declines, and he gets pissy, then she gets pissy, and that's that. Except of course, that I don't remotely think that that is that.

Let me just say, that my initial sympathies are completely with Tora. It's pretty obvious that she thinks he's going to propose, and instead she gets him stammering and fumbling around. In a way, it is almost identical to the way that he acted when he was supposed to go in front of the Guardians waaaay back when and ask them to let G'nort into the Corp. Guy loves Tora, but he is just having so much trouble SAYING it.

Then she sighs and looks down, and he picks up on that at least. Of course Tora then makes the mistake of mentioning Bea, and Guy immediately picks up on that and starts having a tantrum. He falls so easily into those old ways of behavior, because in a way, I think that it is comforting for him to act and feel that way. It's just easier to throw a hissy fit instead of actually listening to what Tora is saying, and having to work things out.

Let's not forget that practically the first thing that Guy did, after finding out that Tora was alive, was to run off to Oa. Then he starts pining for her and their first date. She makes a HUGE step in their relationship, by figuring out how the heck to get herself to Oa for a visit, and he's delighted...at first. I think that Guy loves Tora, and vice versa. I also think that Guy is AFRAID. The whole theme of the past couple of issues has been the targeting of Green Lantern families. The theme of the current issue is the power of love. It is possible that Guy wants Tora, but is also terrified that something is going to happen to her, so he's simultaneously pulling her forward and pushing her away. Tora can't help but be confused by his behavior, but she's handling it remarkably well. I love the part where he asks her finally where it leaves them, and she answers gently, "...wherever we want it to, Guy." She's not slamming the door on the two of them, she's leaving it wide open.

If you notice, Tora is the one who took the initiative to figure out how to find a way to get to Oa, she's the one who is touching him, and being open. He's the one who is standing there, shuffling his feet and having his arms crossed or his hands in his pockets and pouting.

I can hardly wait to see where this all goes.

10 Comments:

At 12:16 PM, Blogger Duskdog said...

I'm a bit slow on the uptake, apparently -- it took me a couple of read-throughs to realize that she was probably hoping for a proposal, but it is pretty obvious when you start looking at her facial expressions and body language during those scenes. Excellent artistic interpretation of the dialogue!

I'm actually glad to see Guy being bratty and childish with his hurt feelings, because it's a definite part of his character that we haven't seen in quite a while. And Tora is being so awesome about it all. She loses her temper and stands up for herself that once, but the rest of the time, she's being very sweet about it all without compromising her position.

Good eye on the body language between them there. I didn't pick up on that either until you pointed it out. (Though I guess now we know that Guy's jacket has pockets!)

No wonder he wants her on Oa with him, what with all the family-killing going on. I wish he would have just come out and said it, though. I wonder if Tora will make it home safely?

 
At 2:39 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

I think that Pat Gleason really does a superb job of showing their respective emotions through their body language. And Tomasi has a sure ear for their dialogue.

My feeling is that Tora was hoping for something a little more romantic than "let's shack up"! And while Guy may indeed be a lot more balanced and mature now, I can see where behaving like a brat is his fall-back emotion. It must have been as comfortable to him as an old pair of shoes.

She hasn't come out and told him no, she just wants to experience things for a little while. There's no reason at all that he can't compromise a little.

 
At 2:46 PM, Anonymous Spectrum Rider said...

"Come live with me" isn't such a bad offer, but: "Come live with me on Oa"??!? Admittedly, Oa's economy is growing (which makes it a very special place these days, I suppose). It used to consist of 36 immortal, near-omnipotent little guys, with Green Lanterns visiting rarely. Now it's more like a military barracks and a prison, with a little strip mall nearby. Still, nice place to visit, but I can't imagine Tora wanting to live there. Or anybody but the Guardians, actually.

And now my piece on "Do We Know These People?":

I make no bones about being a big-time continuity fan. I like learning
about a large, shared fictional setting - its history, its cosmology,
the relationships of the people and groups in it - from the
accumulation of details, cleverly used, in the various stories taking
place in that setting.


But I'm not adverse to continuity-light comics either, where the
stories are written in such a way that they don't have much to do with
each other, and have a "monster of the week" feel to them, each
complete in itself. That's not as intriguing to me but, done right,
it's okay.


And I have no objection to a company deciding - as DC did (or
proposed to do) with Crisis on Infinite Earths - to reset its
continuity and start over, with characters very similar to the ones
they've been using, but with new histories and new relationships. I
don't think this should be done very often (every 30 years is fine
with me), but I do think it can be valuable.


***


However, the situation we have in the DCU - really, ever since CoIE,
but even more so since Infinite Crisis - seems to me to be the worst
of all worlds, continuity-wise. We don't have continuity-light
stories; all the stories are explicitly and deliberately written so
that they strongly depend on past stories and each other. And we don't
really have a new, fresh continuity that we're all learning about,
from the beginning, as we go along. What we have is continuity-HEAVY
stories that are based on a continuity that nobody knows. The readers
certainly don't know it, and the writers and editors don't seem to
either.


In the current DCU, the characters, the planets, the groups, the gods,
the cosmic forces all have an immensely convoluted history with each
other. It's the sort of history that you would usually only see after
decades of accumulating stories. But the history isn't BASED on
decades of accumulating stories. It's new, vague, and unformed. Long-
time readers feel they have some sense of what that history is, based
on years of reading, but in fact every time they read a comic they
realize they're not sure what's going on. The plots are motivated by
things that have happened in the past, but it's a "new" past - not one
that we know - and yet we're not being introduced to it in any clear
or sensible way. Instead they're throwing it at us as if we were long-
time readers... of a history that's never been published.


***


I was particularly struck by this reading GLC #29, which involves the
Zamarons. It's clear we're meant to think that the Guardians and the
Zamarons have a long history together; this certainly isn't the first
time the Guardians are hearing about them. But I was utterly unable to
figure out which pieces of information I know about the Zamarons
applied, and which didn't. Which stories "happened" in their history,
and which were retconned out. I know things get retconned every now
and then, but at least tell me what!


As these Zamarons the female half of the Oan race, as they used to be?
Did they rejoin with the Oans in the recent past, to go off to another
dimension and have children? After Kyle Rayner recreated the Guardians
as male and female infants (a fairly recent story, as these things go,
and never contraindicated - the Guardians still seem to have males and
females), did he get the Zamarons to come babysit?


For that matter, DID Kyle recreate the Guardians as male and female
infants? Did that story happen as we remember it, happen somewhat
differently, or never happen at all? If not, what's the history of
these Guardians? Were they always male and female? Did Hal Jordan wipe
them out, or did that never happen too?


As for the Zamarons, does even the information we've learned since
Infinite Crisis still apply? Most recently, we were shown that the
Zamaron energy source utterly possessed female individuals, turning
them into Star Sapphires who sought out Green Lanterns, seduced them,
killed them, then enveloped their planets in stasis to "protect" them.
This seemed to me to have enormous holes in it - for example, wouldn't
the Guardians know that their Green Lanterns were being killed by Star
Sapphires, and do something about it, or at least warn the GLC? I was
willing to wait patiently to see these holes filled. But I'm not even
sure that that description applies to the Zamarons in GLC #29, and in
any case they have so obviously moved on to other activities that I
doubt the holes would ever get filled in.


(I might also mention that I thought the "new" Star Sapphires were a
horribly sexist portrayal, combining female stereotypes of the Black
Widow, Vagina Dentata, and the Smothering, All-consuming Mother. It's
2008, guys; if you're going to recreate the Star Sapphires, how about
thinking through some of the implications?)


***


Actually, I lied a little up there when I said I was "willing to wait
patiently to see these holes filled." I USED to be willing to wait
patiently for stories to make sense and be filled in. But the
percentage of the time that that waiting is futile and pointless has
increased dramatically over the years. The writers and the editors
don't seem to be concerned about making their stories make sense,
either on a short-term or long-term level. (A useful backstory is one
of the things that helps a story make sense; a confusing and vague
backstory has the opposite effect.)What's left is nostalgia, in-jokes
and meta-stories, "H'ood win?", and the comic-book equivalents to car
chases and big explosions. But I like STORIES, and I don't really feel
like the stories I'm reading hold together all that well.

 
At 3:43 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

Ahhh...good old continuity. I have to admit that it is a little hard to figure out just what the heck is going on with the Zamarons. They split off of the Guardians after the Guardians decided that emotion was "bad", which only goes to prove what a bunch of idiots the Guardians are. They seemed to be rather antagonistic towards one another until that whole bit where they decided to run off together and make Guardian/Zamaron whoopie.

Sea of Green has a lovely scan of the Zamarons and Guardians "doing it" and poor Hal trying to claw his eyes out. Ok, I'm exagerating...but not by much.

Then, as you say, Kyle recreated the Guardians and the Zamarons dropped by to babysit. They didn't do a very good job with this bunch of brats however, since they STILL, after being raised by Ganthet and the Zamarons believe that emotion is bad. You can apparenly give the Guardians new bodies, but you can't teach them new tricks.

My guess is that after the lesson they learned when Hal kissed one of the Zamarons and she was possessed by the crystal, that love was a bit stronger than they had thought, because they really seem to be getting into the whole pink Lantern bit. Some of this may be genuine zeal, some of it may be a little feeling of payback to the Guardians.

I must admit however, to being intrigued.

 
At 5:30 PM, Blogger CalvinPitt said...

Geez, when Is aw that first panel of Miri as a Pink Lantern/Star Sapphire, i went "Augh! Zombies! Noooo! Not in the DCU too!" I think it's all the teeth she's showing, it looked skeletal to me.

Poor stupid Guy. I really like that expression on his face when he says "Yeah, like lovers do. Whaddaya say?" I get the impression he thinks he was very smooth just then, asking her to "cohabitate". I actually surprised he used that phrase. I expected something more. . . base, but I forgot Guy is actually quite intelligent. Not so much here, but sometimes.

 
At 8:10 PM, Blogger Duskdog said...

Yes, the teeth made me think of zombies, too! That is quite the unattractive picture, though she looks fine when she closes her lips.

And thinking about cohabitation got me thinking about something else. I posted my thoughts here to spare you another novel-length reply. (Sorry, I'm bad about those.)

 
At 6:35 AM, Blogger SallyP said...

Guy actually IS smart. Just not when it comes to dealing with his feelings, at least in this case.

I thought that the scene where Kyle looked so wistful at the couple holding hands was rather poignant too.

 
At 9:18 AM, Blogger Toriach said...

Sally,

I have to disagree a bit. I don't think Ice was so much looking for a proposal as she was not looking for an invite to move to Oa. I think she was hoping that her coming all the way to see Guy rather than making him come to her would show him that she was ready to meet him half way. Back on earth. As you say Guy is not good at dealing with his feelings. Sadly. So instead of getting back in there and keeping pitching (I would have been asking, "Well if I were back on earth would you feel differently about it?") he takes her rejection of moving to Oa to be with him as a rejection of him. Still though I think that despite his challenges Guy has grown a lot and this shows it. I think back a few years ago he would have rather than kind of freezing up, probably have sent Ice straight back to earth and then tried to pretend he didn't care. So he's getting better, little by little. I hope that Tora won't give up on him.

Peace
And
Long
Life

Toriach

 
At 10:03 AM, Blogger SallyP said...

Toriach, if you read it, she's certainly the one making all the effort, and she is also the one who keeps pointing out that they can work things out. As usual, Guy is only hearing what he wants to hear.

 
At 12:51 PM, Blogger Brendan McGinley said...

I'm glad Ice has a backbone...but something about the dialogue just doesn't sound like her. Ah well.

 

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