Green Lantern: New Guardians #6: Invictus

A godlike new foe strikes as Tyler Kirkham finds new contortions to showcase Fatality's body parts on its covers.

Andy Hunsakerby Andy Hunsaker

Green Lantern: New Guardians #6

The Green Lantern titles in the New 52 are a mixed bag.  Green Lantern proper is a misguided buddy cop movie with a softened-up Sinestro and a douche Hal Jordan, Green Lantern Corps has been epic in scope but lacking a bit in being actively compelling, and Red Lanterns has been focusing on showing us a lot of loitering.  Green Lantern: New Guardians seems to be the title with the most going on and the most interesting dynamics of all of them, because it seems to be gearing up towards a new status quo for all the Skittle Corps, while the longstanding Guardians of the Universe appear to be on their way out. 

The little blue dudes were once the ultimate stewards of justice, the foundation of the morality of the Green Lantern Corps, but lately, they've pretty much become villains, what with lobotomizing Ganthet, one of their own, because he dared to experience emotions, and apparently planning to wipe out the GLC and replace it with something else.  Not to mention the dickish moves that earned the ire of the Keepers over in Green Lantern Corps, and dollars to donuts they have something to do with why this Archangel Invictus character that shows up in Green Lantern: New Guardians #6 believes all the ringslingers are unholy darkness-servers. That's why this strange team-up of spectrum-corps representatives in Tony Bedard's GL:NG feels a lot more important.  It really feels like, however this shakes out, it's all going to matter quite a bit.

Green Lantern Kyle Rayner has joined forces with one representative of each Lantern Corps, which in itself is a fun idea.  Arkillo of the Sinestro Corps (which I'm guessing will need to be renamed soon), Saint Walker of the Blue Lanterns, Munk of the Indigo Tribe, Yrra Cyrnil aka Fatality of the Star Sapphires, and a little blob of reasonably autonomous orange light called Glomulus, who might as well be Slimer from The Real Ghostbusters.  Bleez of the Red Lanterns is a part of their crew, but she had to take a detour back home to get her brains back.  The team has entered The Orrery, which is a giant baby-mobile-lookin' model of the solar system powered by this Invictus guy and populated with copies of other worlds (like Fatality's homeworld Okaara) and people who worship him.  He's crazy powerful, which you have to be to fight Lanterns, and now he's been angered and is out to "smite the wicked."  In this case, the people with the rings.

In response to this, Yrra questions his 'angelic' status, which Invictus passively denies claiming for himself, while Kyle struggles to regroup the Lanterns and figures out he can channel his emotions through his ring to facilitate communications with each of the other Corps members – something Arkillo doesn't take too kindly to.  This establishes Kyle as a nexus that can override "irreconcilable emotional wavelengths" between the different colored crews.  That, coupled with his Gray Lantern all-are-one moment a few issues back, seems to indicate he might turn out to be the Head Honcho in charge of the whole she-bang once this is over.

It's fun to see how different people react to the presence of Invictus.  Fatality tries to reason with him and gets shot down for it, while Arkillo just attacks the big bastard as soon as he pops up and opens his mouth, grateful for something to hit at last, and Saint Walker just tries to heal him, only to find that he's not broken.  Invictus believes them all to be working for some evil monster he calls The Beast, and more specifically refers to Glomulus as "spawn of the Beast!" Since this guy is billions of years old, chances are he's not referring to Larfleeze, but perhaps the "orange entity" Ophidian – although is that still continuity?  That was pre-New 52, after all – although it was Geoff Johns, so it probably got to survive.

Tyler Kirkham's art is really energetic, dynamic comic book stuff, although it does appear he takes after Frank Cho in regards to rendering women as stunningly voluptuous at all times.  The sheer amount of Fatality cleavage is something one can't help but notice, but one is glad that in the New 52, Star Sapphires get to wear pants instead of thongs, at least. No Lantern book can be reviewed without a shout-out to the colorist, and Nei Ruffino is aces at working with the entire spectrum at all times. 

If you'd told me last year that the Kyle Rayner book would be my favorite Green Lantern title, I'd have scoffed.  But here we are.  Green Lantern: New Guardians #6 – stuff's actually happening, and it's bright and shiny and the most interesting ringslingin' goin' these days.

Crave Online Rating: 8.4/10