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In this week’s Green Lantern #11 we see how much Thaaros has been able to get dictatorial control of the United Planets, and Carol Ferris takes a big step forward with a potentially life changing decision. Meanwhile, the dramatic tone of the main story gets a counterpoint with a humorous turn of events with Guy Gardner and his mission to bring in Lobo. As always I’m going to try to talk about the book without spoiling too much, so my apologies in advance if I fall short in talking about an issue that has a lot of spoilery material in it.

The issues opens on Zamaron with Thaaros conducting similar negotiations with the Zamorans to get them to join him, but those conversations don’t go according to Plan A, so Thaaros has to resort to Plan B. I can’t tell if his negotiations are with Queen Aga’po or not since she is not referred to by name, but she could be very well alive again given all of the universe altering events that have transpired since she “died” in Green Lantern volume 4 #57. Thaaros’s Plan B is a decisive one which furthers his overall agenda at the expense of the Star Sapphires.

The “Resistance Corps” are feeling they have the upper hand against Thaaros once they get a witness willing to speak out against him. As they discuss strategy we see Kyle again struggling with the fractured emotional spectrum and the toll it’s taking on him has to be quite a strain. I appreciate that Jeremy Adams is using Kyle’s past journey as a White Lantern and showing that it was more than just a one way connection. The big showdown takes places in the chambers of the United Planets on Oa, but Thaaros knew what was coming at some point and proves that he has the upper hand when he makes a big revelation. I’ll just repeat something that I said in the last episode of The Podcast of Oa – “Durlans gonna Durlan!”

The Resistance Corps lay their cards out on the table, but was the deck stacked against them?

This issue moves back and forth between to main plots, the other being the relationship between Hal Jordan and Carol Ferris. Carol is trying move on in a life without Hal Jordan, but her head and her heart are definitely not in the same place. Carol’s characterization is on point and Jeremy Adams does a great job of capturing the essence of the dynamic between two people who clearly love each other but can’t seem to put all the pieces together. Hal is the man Carol wants to be with, and she is drawn to him like a moth to a candle, but the very things which make Hal so attractive to her are the same things that get in the way of them being truly happy together.

Like so many people, Carol makes a rash decision to go in the other direction, thinking that a substitute person in her life and a major commitment will somehow fill the emptiness she feels and somehow force her to abandon her heart’s true desire. She was married to Gil Johns for a time, and when Hal came back it fell apart when what she truly wants became available. Now Nate Broome (John Broome, get it!?) is the latest victim here, and the wedding vows haven’t even taken place yet but you can already tell that Carol is just fooling herself here and setting both of them up for heartache. Oh, if only she and Hal had a chance to have a real conversation!

As this issue unfolds Adams gives a flashback to events that took place during Hal and Carol’s youth involving the first time Carol went to Las Vegas. This was a real delight to see the dynamic between them building back then, and Adams creates a situation that really encapsulates a core conceit in their relationship. Carol loves that Hal is impulsive, and fun, and adventurous, but along with than comes a certain disregard for responsibility. Perhaps the most telling part of the sequence is something Carol says early on, than “I’m waiting for someone.” She’s waiting for Hal then, and she’ll continue waiting for Hal to be both the maverick that she’s attracted to, and the responsible, caring one at the same time. It’s an unrealistic expectation and isn’t fair to Hal at all – in fact it’s not fair to either of them. But it is entirely human.

Carol’s eyes say she’s not.

The final part of the flashback is prophetic if my read on Carol is accurate. As the scene shifts to the present, the shadow of doubt creeps into Carol’s eyes at several points, one in particular involves a clever moment when she and Nate pick out rings. The issue’s well timed cliffhanger leaves us wanting more as Carol is faced with a decision that will no doubt be one that many of us will see coming, but I can’t wait to read it!

The continuation of Guy Gardner’s mission to apprehend Lobo is a really fun counterpoint to the more serious tone of the main story, and I enjoyed seeing Adams play around with the Guy / Lobo dynamic, although we’re still not sure if Guy really has the right person in cuffs. Shenanigans unfold and Guy is left dealing with Bolphunga and other bounty hunters are want a piece of the action, only to end up finding himself literally pulled into the “House of Brainiac” storyline.

In my mind I hear Guy saying, “I say we let him go” like Pee Wee Herman in the biker bar!

I can’t talk about this issue and not discuss the fantastic work of the art team. Xermanico and Amacay Nahuelpan are a great tag-team is this issue, and their art styles compliment each other really well. The sequences on Zamoran and Oa have a suitable epic space adventure vibe, while the events on Earth are very grounded and real. In particular, the facial expressions on Carol Ferris as she goes through a number of conflicted emotions is very strong and tell a part of the story that the words don’t, completely supporting the script with the visual storytelling that elevates the book. And Kevin Maguire is the perfect artist pairing for Guy’s misadventures!

Green Lantern #11 feels like the issue that this series has been building towards from the get go. Everything that the creative team has been doing up to now has positioned this series to where it is now, with a feeling that each plot is coming to a crescendo at the same time. What a great time to be a lantern fan! Nine out of ten lanterns.

 

 

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