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Hal in a  “wretched hive of scum and villainy.”

This week readers have an opportunity to preview the post-Convergence relaunch of Green Lantern and the launch of The Omega Men by way of eight page previews that DC is including in their titles both this week and next.  The Green Lantern preview can be found in the back of Convergence: The Atom #2 while The Omega Men can be found in the back of Convergence: Batman and Robin #2.  Both previews are also available for free digitally on Comixology.   There will be a preview of Green Lantern; Lost Army later this month.

The Green Lantern preview depicts Hal Jordan being interrupted by local law officials as he’s trying to enjoy a drink.  Hal’s plan was to go on the run to allow the Green Lantern Corps to regain some of their credibility, not knowing of course that the Corps would soon disappear to parts unknown.  Now alone in every sense of the word Hal must try to navigate a universe where he’s considered the bad guy with no one to rely on but himself.

Jordan takes advantage of the situation to kidnap one of the officers and present another perspective to him before turning him loose.  While the story is short Robert Venditti gives us a glimpse into Hal’s new world with no one but his new partner, Darlene, to rely on.

This is a new direction for Hal and while I’m not sold on the long hair it is perhaps the easiest way for Hal to change this appearance a little bit.  His new wardrobe channels his past stint as The Spectre yet really evokes the “space rogue” look that this new chapter calls for.

Venditti’s dialogue reveals that even though Hal is still navigating according to his traditional moral compass he’s continuing to evolve as a character.  This is perhaps the most welcome part of the change in direction as Hal, for the time being, is able to function without all the trappings which have sometimes prevented creators from exploring Jordan as a human being and perhaps readers will learn as much about Hal Jordan during this journey as he will himself.

Despite the long hair Hal is still Hal

The Omega Men preview establishes a new dynamic for the cosmic, and in this launching point we get perhaps the most uncomfortable debut I think I’ve read in my 40+ years as a comics fan.  Writer Tom King introduces us to a group which conjures easy comparisons to ISIS in the most unsettling of ways.  On the side of the seeming oppressed The Omega Men embrace the end of all things, hence their name, in the Vega system, fighting against the control of the Citadel.

How this ties into the Green Lantern universe becomes clear as the preview progresses and their bound and hooded captive is revealed to be none other than Kyle Rayner as one of the Omegas speak to the camera recording the event.  The whole preview seems ripped from some of today’s most tragic headlines and it’s only a matter of panels before Kyle apparently meets his end at the hands of Tigorr.

Three panels from The Omega Men preview

I don’t truly believe that what we witness is as authentic as The Omega Men would have us believe and while DC has struggled with what to do with Kyle Rayner of late I don’t truly believe that they would dispose of the character in this way.  I could certainly be wrong but I do believe that there is more to what we see here than the surface level portrayed.  We’ll find out in the months to come, but this preview certainly makes me interested in seeing more.

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