Comic Reviews: Green Lantern and Amazing Spider-Man!
Green Lantern #0
I know what you’re saying: “wait, didn’t you say last week that you were going to be dropping Green Lantern after the annual?” Well yes, that is true. However, my curiosity got the better of me and I wanted to see how this new Green Lantern would pan out before I completely wrote it off. Yes, the fact that he’s using a gun on the cover drives me a little nuts, but at the same time, I want to check it out. So, how was it?
Pretty good. Pretty, pretty, good.
However, those expecting to see Simon Baz in full Green Lantern mode will be disappointed. Instead of seeing him in full ring-slingin’ mode, writer Geoff Johns and artist Doug Mahnke show us Baz’s life before and just leading up to the ring choosing him as the successor of Sinestro. Starting with a fantastic opening showing us Baz’s difficult childhood, the issue then shifts to Baz being chased by police. We quickly learn that he’s started boosting cars to help support his sister and her son after the death of her husband, who died in a drag race that Baz was a part of. After noticing a bomb in the back seat, and with the cops closing in, Baz calls her to explain what’s happened. However, at the last minute, he bails out of the car, letting it explode, which, while saving his life, allows him to be taken in by the police. The cops and federal agents refuse to believe Baz’ protests that he’s not a part of a terrorist cell, and when he’s about to be interrogated again, a familiar green object explodes through the room, carrying Baz away.
This zero issue does a great job of introducing us to Simon Baz the man, even if we never see the Simon Baz, Green Lantern that’s depicted on the cover. While I think it’s awesome that Johns and Mahnke are giving us a new take on Green Lantern, I would’ve liked some inkling or preview of Baz as a Green Lantern. It’s a cool story (bro), and of course, the tease in the epilogue tells us something that we all knew was going to happen, but I felt the issue was a little lacking in the GL department. However, this is a great character study issue that fans of Johns’ ongoing saga should not miss.
The Amazing Spider-Man #693
After last issue’s introduction of Spidey’s new sidekick Alpha, I was hoping that he would fall into the Damian Wayne territory of sidekicks. Unfortunately it’s becoming more and more likely that he’s going to be in the “Jason Todd” category. I really like the instances where Spider-Man is struggling to figure out how to train this cocky kid, but whenever Alpha shows up I just want to punch him. But I think that may be Dan Slott’s point: showing us how differently Peter Parker could have been if he didn’t have the support that he had growing up. Peter himself makes this assumption at one point in the issue, and it’s my hope that Alpha can make a turn around over the course of this storyline, cause if not I want him to take a big ol’ dirtnap.
Also, with this issue, Humberto Ramos has become one of my favorite Spidey artists. He’s simply awesome, and the scene where peter goes to Mary Jane at her nightclub to vent is my favorite in the issue. It’s a great nod to what they used to be, and what they (hopefully) will be in the future. Unfortunately the Spider-Man segments of this issue aren’t as great. Jackal kidnapping Alpha and his family to make a super clone army of him was alright, but I feel like I missed the issue where Jackal turned the crazy up to 11. I also forget how he came back to life at the beginning of “Spider-Island”, but I digress. After the Jackal is (surprisingly quickly) dealt with, Peter decides that it’s time to take Alpha’s powers from him, and while it may seem out of character for him to deceive this young kid with an Avengers membership, I really want Alpha out of here. Like I said earlier, he’s gotta take a complete 180 for me to see him lasting for longer than this storyline.