Page 45 Review by Stephen
Original 2000AD run through with Douglas Adams - that's how I'd characterise so much of this.
It's highly inventive and very, very funny. Even mid-mass-arrest, there are so many stop-for-a-moment-to-laughs.
"Ye'll never catch us now, copper!" boasts an 8-legged fiend.
"I won't have to. My partner, Green Lantern Floozle Flem, is a super-intelligent all-purpose virus. Replicating in your bloodstream as we speak. Floozle Flem doesn't catch you... You catch Floozle Flem."
The police-patrol Green Lantern Corps' pro-diversity recruitment drive knows no blinkers. You can't expect to patrol then control the full range of a cosmos's criminal manifestations if you don't have an equally unorthodox armoury of agents. So yes, one Green Lantern is a virulent, sentient flu germ; another is a walking, talking, bi-pedal volcano.
No more a superhero series than Hickman and Aja's HAWKEYE - which was instead a slickly designed, contemporary comedy of manners, therefore infinitely more accessible to a far broader audience - this is cosmic cop-crime whose precinct and jurisdiction are both set in space.
You can tell by its structure, which begins with a disciplined demand for a sit-rep update from HQ (a great big green-lantern-shaped space station) while at ground-level (somewhere similarly suspended but less lime-coloured) all is barely contained chaos. A spider's just bitten a Green Lantern's ring off.
"That was my favourite finger, you savage!
"Arachno-Sapiens! So bitey all the time!"
So yes, bursting with playful mischief to be sure, but if fingers can be cropped then so can entire individuals as - this being crime an' all - it also comes with abrupt, contrasting (and so much more arresting) casualties.
You need know nothing of this title's past to enjoy the opener to this first season (because that is what I sense this is, very much mapped out like a television show), for I've read fewer than dozen GREEN LANTERN issues in my life; only enough to recognise this as hilariously faithful yet totally fresh, with Liam Sharp art that is ridiculously detailed and full of authority.
To tell you more, plot-wise, would be to spoil the surprise, while the same goes for its structure which isn't above slipping in memories like a meandering and meditative road journey.
Liam Sharp has brought his all - which is considerable - and I do hope he's on double time for all the detail. The following need mean nothing to you, it is merely an observational self-indulgence based on my own historical comics-history bias:
On different pages yet sometimes in the same panels, I sensed serious amounts of neo-classical Neal Adams in the figure work, forearms and faces, enough Alan Davis to keep me amused in the background Glaswegian gamblers betting on a battle's outcome, HR Giger - appropriately enough - in the mechanics during the discovery of a crashed spaceship, Jim Starlin rendering attending Hal's ribcage and stomach muscles, bites of early Sir Bazza Windsor-Smythe in the biceps, Herb Trimpe female faces and forearms, a sizzle of Bill Sienkiewicz during an arm-spread lift-off, and Jim Steranko during what I'd call "assembly", reciting the customary bright / night / sight / might / light riff.
I'd only add that if you like your heroes not necessarily anti- but perhaps more ambivalent, then Hal Jordan will prove as pragmatic as he is dogmatic and determined in his Green Lantern role, unintimidated when going up against an entity bearing a suspicious resemblance to the Biblical God (and all cops are inherently suspicious - it's part of their job description and arsenal), not above some judicious deception of his own, and never comes close to dropping his guard by turning the other cheek.
"Nurse, I'd call a doctor if I were you.
"But tell them this man killed 2.5 billion people.
"Tell them there's no need to hurry."
Also, since I did mention 2000AD in my first paragraph, does this ambition and audacity remind you of Judge Dredd?
"Planet Earth - you are gamma-intoxicated and clearly no longer in control of your decisions or actions.
"I'm placing all of you under arrest until you come to your senses."
Are we all allowed one phone call each?