While the Justice League / Mighty Morphin’ Power Ranger crossover is being shelved mid-stream, the collaboration between BOOM! Studios and DC Comics on the Planet of the Apes / Green Lantern series is chugging right along. This week’s fourth issue push the plot forward and sets the series up for a big showdown between the Green Lanterns, Sinestro, Cornelius’ faction and the team up of Gorilla Grodd and the Red Lanterns. If that sounds like a lot of moving parts, it is, but fortunately Justin Jordan’s script does a nice job of keeping all the balls in motion in a cohesive manner.
I really liked how this issue started out by giving us an interesting backstory for the Green Lantern whose ring was discovered last issue. Jordan pushes the narrative along by getting both Hal Jordan and Sinestro back into a state where they have power rings, a good move considering both characters would be under-served by entering the final two chapters essentially powerless. It also reunites Cornelius with Zira and his fellow Apes while sharing with readers Cornelius’ ultimate vision where the universal rings are wielded by ape and man alike.
The sequence between Sinestro and Dr. Zaius does a nice job of giving some background on how the Green Lantern universe works, which is helpful for anyone reading this series from the Planet of the Apes side of things who may not be familiar. I love the condescension dripping off of Sinestro’s tongue as he talks down to the the orangutan and how Zaius doesn’t seem to realize he’s being insulted.
Barnaby Bagenda has been pretty consistent with his artwork throughout the crossover so how you feel about his style will likely remain unchanged by this issue. I’m not personally a fan of it here, but I did find his portrayal of the Red Lantern versions of Cornelius and Zira to be particularly menacing. There’s the ongoing white boot problem that has been persistent throughout the series, and in addition there’s a scene where the power ring features prominently where the logo is rotated improperly. There’s also some minor continuity problems with Cornelius, who switches back and forth between wearing boots and being barefoot. But none of those things are particularly distracting enough to take the reader out of the story.
Planet of the Apes / Green Lantern #4 is possibly the best issue of the series so far, moving the series into a showdown which will take center stage for the final two chapters. Justin Jordan’s script keeps the story moving in an entertaining way while positioning all the moving parts to where they need to be. Seven out of ten lanterns.