Hal Pictures Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!: Green Lantern #61

Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!

Now with Guy Gardner's Seal of Approval!

Friday, December 31, 2010

Green Lantern #61

Well! That's a very nice picture of Hal on the cover of this issue, but actually, that's about the only place that he shows up, so enjoy it. I was rather hoping for a butt shot, but I suppose that one can't have everything.

Nevertheless, I have to say that I didn't particularly miss him. This is mainly a story about Atrocitus, the Spectre, and the Rage Entity, and it just rolls along very nicely.

Atrocitus really really doesn't like Earth very much. But he does appreciate that there is a lot of rage floating about. He's drawn to an execution of a particularly nasty criminal, who is getting his jollies by taunting the father of his victim, even as they strap him down for the needle. This...turns out to be a rather poor move on his part, as the poor Father is filled with Rage...and the Butcher shows up.

Well crap!

And then of course, hot on his heels, is the Spectre, AND Atrocitus! The Father is promptly possessed, and the criminal gets his. Atrocitus and the Spectre have a rather unexpectedly civil philosophical exchange, and we learn still more about Atrocitus's past. As nasty as he can be, you do have to feel a bit of sympathy for him. Oddly enough, the Spectre backs down and agrees that his vendetta against Krona is righteous... at least for now.

It's nicely done. And as usual, Doug Mahnke does a spectacular job. His version of the possessed Rage Entity is scary as heck. I did have to do a double take at that particular page however, which shows the Butcher in all of his red hatey glory...which is directly next to an in-house ad by DC for various prizes, showing Superman, Aquaman, Santa and the GOOD Dr. Light, and somehow the red energy from Mahnke's drawing flows so perfectly across the pages that for a couple of seconds it all looked like One Picture! Why, I wondered, was the Butcher angry at Santa?
Then my eyes snapped back into focus.

Things are really starting to move along nicely, with the build-up coming to the War of the Green Lanterns in a couple of months. I can hardly wait.


At 4:46 PM, Blogger Volcano Todd said...

I restrained myself this time and waited to read your review until I picked up and read GL #61 and I'm glad because I was pleasantly surprised by this issue!

Normally, I'd be a bit peeved that Hal didn't show up, but this was an awesome done-in-one issue that really showed how strong a character Atrocious is. What originally appeared to be one-note plot-driven supporting character has increasingly become a fully developed and interesting individual. And this issue actually shows that a Red Lantern series could work.

I also loved the inclusion of the Spectre. Despite his history with Hal prior to Johns' rebirth of the GL mythos, I never thought we'd see much of him in the GL titles. Mostly, I figured they'd want to forget that whole period of Hal's life and focus on GL stuff. And to a degree they have, but Blackest Night and this issue shows that the creators aren't afraid to bring in the biggest green guy of them all when it works for the story.

You'd never think that God's Spirit of Vengeance and a space cop would mesh well in a story (yes, even a comicbook), but it's surprising how often Hal and the Spectre have shared time together in books, even prior to their bonding.

I think someone should put together a brief history of the two. Interested? If not, I'll give it a go, haha.

At 1:43 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

Todd, I would love to see your take on the history of Hal and the Spectre. It IS rather nice that they haven't swept that whole era of Hal's history under the rug...certainly not the way that they've consistantly ignored Guy's whole Vuldarian thing.

I think Johns is doing a good job with Atrocitus. Like Sinestro, he's a villain, but one that you can actually sympathize with a bit.

At 12:10 AM, Blogger LissBirds said...

I seem to find any character that Johns writes sympathetic. I think that's really his true talent. I mean, I started tearing up when Dex-Starr's origin was revealed. (Granted, I'm an animal lover, but still...a comic book making someone want to cry?)

I never thought I'd care for Atrocitus, either. And I can't remember her name, but the Red Lantern with wings that is in Emerald Warriors right now...geez, her story was really tragic.

I agree with Volcano Todd that I'm liking the Spectre's appearances, too. It adds a different facet to the story.

At 8:45 AM, Blogger SallyP said...

Yeah, I had a lump in my throat over Dex-Starr's origin as well. Good Kitty indeed.

Sinestro and Atrocitus are fun because they are well-rounded, and actual characters...as opposed to cardboard cutouts with an agenda. There is some depth to them, and reasons for the way that they are, as opposed to simply being villains for villainy's sake.


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