“I don’t have that kind of time”
It’s been a little while since Convergence and to be honest it didn’t leave a lasting impression on me. But I do recall that a Zero Hour era Parallax was sent back in time with Telos, Superman, Supergirl, Flash and Lois Lane to “fix” the Crisis on Infinite Earths and essentially undoing some of the crucial elements to the classic story that destroyed the multiverse. That version of Parallax has shown up in recent issues of the flagship Green Lantern title but he’s also appearing in the final two issues of the Telos series. The fifth issue of the series was released this week and in it we find a Parallax who’s not entirely unchanged by his recent time travel.
Jumping into the series at this juncture does leave me a little confused as to what’s going on, which isn’t a flaw in the book but just my experience in picking up the issue to see what Parallax is up to. Telos is pitted in battled against a consortium of some of the universe’s most warlike species including the Dominators, the Khund and the Okaaran’s. The battle is pretty spectacular as Telos using his time travel abilities to deal with the overwhelming odds against the massive fleet of spacecraft assaulting him. The battle takes a toll on Telos, but before his adversaries can completely turn the tide of battle Parallax arrives and deals out some major punishment.
I like what writer Jeff King does with the cosmic battle, interweaving Telos’ internal monologue with the imagery that artist Igor Vitorino creates to convey the impressive battle taking place in deep space. As a Green Lantern fan I’ve always loved seeing what goes on in the rest of the cosmic side of the DC Universe and it was a treat to see this epic space battle unfold. However for me once Parallax entered the scene the issue began to disappoint a little.
King’s Parallax takes a giant step backwards from where King had Hal in the final issue of Convergence. Gone is a Parallax who volunteered to go back in time as a chance at redemption and back is the one blinded by the obsession to rebuild his own version of Coast City. We learn that after saving the multiverse Parallax witnessed the Justice League taking on Darkseid, presumably the “New52” relaunch League’s first battle. Parallax sees our version of Hal and how happy he and Carol Ferris are that point in time that he graciously decided to let him live.
So I’m not sure what made Parallax snap again. Coast City remains and this version of Hal Jordan has gone on to great heights – so where’s Parallax’s motivation? Having redeemed himself Parallax has a new chance to be whatever he wants to be, so why fall back to the same tired characterization? The rest of the issue is Parallax duping Telos into giving him even more power so that he can make his own Coast City on a dead planet somewhere.
Could Parallax (the entity) have gained an upper hand on Hal? That’s possible and perhaps the only rationalization that I have come up with so far. With one issue left of this series and knowing that some sort of “Rebirth” is about to happen with DC the cynic in me wonders if Parallax will the force behind whatever plans DC has for their universe. If so in my opinion it’s a terribly unoriginal idea and one which may, in the minds of some, undo the effort that Geoff Johns put into rebuilding Hal’s reputation. There’s one issue left in this series and I’m cautiously looking forward to seeing what King does in the final chapter.
Telos #5 is an action filled space spectacle as the titular character takes on the combined forces of some of DC’s most brutal cosmic factions. The arrival of Parallax takes the series into an unexpected direction once his true intentions are discovered. Setting the stage for the series’ finale whatever the creative team of Jeff King and Igor Vitorino have in store may have a great impact on the DC universe. Six out of ten lanterns.