Justin Jordan continues to pour on some dark elements in this weeks Green Lantern: New Guardians #33 now that the Psions have the Templar Guardians held captive. While the Psions are torturing the Guardians the romance between Kyle Rayner and Carol Ferris is momentarily rekindled before the two plunge deeper into the bowels of the ship to discover the horrors that lie within. While both sides of the ongoing narrative have yet to cross paths by the end of this issue Jordan does give us a bit more of a history of the Psions which doesn’t stray much from their pre-New 52 roots.
Brad Walker and Diogenes Neves share art duties this issue and both do a great job of conveying the horrific elements of the story while providing some great visual touches on some of the panel layouts. While I find the whole Carol/Kyle dynamic utterly cringe-worthy I think from an artistic standpoint Walker makes their reunion at least look good. Another nice touch are the panels where we see what’s being done to the Guardians by the Psions as we see each one of the Guardians trying to reason with their reptilian captors while in a different stage of torture. I felt like I was seeing the events as they transpire simultaneously and added a sense of dread that what was left of the Oans was being snuffed out in a single breath.
Sooner or later Carol and Kyle will need to have that talk.
There are a couple of things that Jordan’s script had my scratching my head over a little bit, the first being how the means of Kyle’s arrival were conveniently swept under the rug. Perhaps this is something that will be explored more as Kyle’s power set continues to evolve and the time is right to call it into question or perhaps Jordan felt that it was a situation where that bit of narrative might have side tracked the story he’s trying to tell and I can respect that. The other issue was that it seemed a little too easy for the Psions to have imprisoned, tortured and killed some of the most powerful beings in the universe. While we know that the Psions have evolved as beings and have advanced some Oan technology it’s a bit hard to swallow that they could do this so easily. It wasn’t so long ago (Green Lantern #67 to be exact) that it was considered impossible to kill a Guardian, but apparently for the Psions it’s not too big of a deal (or for Sinestro for that matter!).
While the look and tone of the Psions have changed, their origins have not
I do like a theme that Jordan is developing with the Templar Guardians. It seems that the Templar Guardians are going to pay the price for the deeds of their brothers for some time and my hope is that Jordan will bring this to the forefront so that the Templar Guardians can begin to move forward in their journey to step in to the mantle of serving as the new Guardians of the Universe. I’d really like to see some dialog between them as they try to make amends for trespasses that they didn’t commit and wrestle with the responsibility of atoning for actions they didn’t take.
My rating for this comic will likely be lower than other reviews that are written for this issue not because of my disdain for the budding romantic relationship but for the fact that issue doesn’t move the story along much further than providing some background detail on the antagonists for this arc, information for anyone who remembers the Psions that added nothing new. While I can’t give this issue much in terms of substance I do credit both Justin Jordan and the art teams with well earned style points. What the issue lacks in overall narrative it makes up for in tone and atmosphere. Three out of five lanterns.