Blackest Night Review – “Green Lantern: Agent Orange”

The latest chapter leading into Blackest Night wrapped up this week. Next issue is the official prologue issue, detailing some of the Black Hand’s role in all of this.

General Information

Title: Green Lantern, Vol. 4 #39-42
Author: Geoff Johns
Illustrator(s): Philip Tan, Rafael Albuquerque, Eddy Barrows, Ruy Jose, Jonathan Glapion, and Julio Ferreira
Cover Date: Range from April 2009 to August 2009
Cover Price: $2.99 US per issue


When we last left Hal Jordan (at the end of Rage of the Red Lanterns; see review linked below) he had found himself with a Blue Ring of Hope on his left hand. Now it refuses to come off until he can find something to hope for and discharge the energy. This wouldn’t be such a bad thing if it didn’t keep short circuiting and overloading his green ring, and if he didn’t have to deal with the rise of the orange light of Avarice at the same time.

High Point

Hal is trying to find something to hope for, satisfying the ring’s request and making the ring go away, since the latest short circuit leaves him falling out of the sky.)
Hal Jordan: World peace. I hope for world peace!
Blue Ring: Insincerity registered.
Hal Jordan: Dammit!
Hal continues to fall.
This exchange is even more enjoyable with the bookending version that comes later, but that one’s a little too spoilery.

Low Point

The sequences with Ash and Saarek won’t make a lot of sense to those not reading “Green Lantern Corps” as well as this title.

The Scores

With so many different colours and Corps being introduced in relatively little time, I was afraid we’d lost originality in the way each Corps works. That’s not a concern here. The Orange Corps is decidedly different from the others. I give it 5 out of 6.

The artwork is mixed. Once again, DC has brought in guest artists to maintain a particular publication schedule, and the style of the guests doesn’t always mesh well with the style of Philip Tan. Eddy Barrows is particularly different, producing a look that appears as though it’s been airbrushed, softening the work in a way that seems quite out of place in the middle of battle. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story works well once more, and does read better in a continuous sitting than monthly. (It read well monthly, too, unlike some other events I could name.) It sets the stage for the involvement of the Orange Lanterns along with some other conflicts, and ends with something that will lead directly into the main event. I give it 5 out of 6.

The characterization is solid. We get a clear look at Hal’s perspective on hope, and Larfleeze is most definitely revealed as unique. Scar is also better understood, which is very nice to see given her revealed role as the Guardian of the Black Lantern corps. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response is good. Larfleeze’s history with the Guardians is interesting, and the opening battle with the Controllers sets up his power level nicely. The interactions between Green and Blue, as well as the last few pages, keep things primed and ready to get the event rolling into high gear. I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow is marred by the artists changes. I give it 3 out of 6.

Overall, it’s a good story, and a recommended warmup to the main event. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Green Lantern: Agent Orange receives 32 out of 42.

Blackest Night Checklist

A History of the DC Universe: Green Lantern


The Main Event

  • Blackest Night #0 (Free Comic Day edition), #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, , #7, #8, complete series
  • Green Lantern #43
  • Blackest Night: Tales of the Corps #1-3
  • Green Lantern #44-??
  • Green Lantern Corps #39-??
  • Blackest Night: Batman #1-3
  • Blackest Night: Superman #1-3
  • Blackest Night: Titans #1-3
  • more to come…

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