Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Bottled Light (Comic) Review

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Bottled Light (Comic) Review

Sinestro is dead. So too is Hal Jordan. This is the aftermath of Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps first Rebirth storyline, Sinestro’s Law.

But as with any comic series, heroes and villains can always return from the afterlife.

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Bottled Light (Comic) Review

This is one of the storylines from Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps second story arc titled, Bottled Light. Bottled Light occurs in issues 8 through 12 and begins with the end of Sinestro’s reign and the beginnings of an unprecedented new alliance between the Green Lantern Corps and the Sinestro Corps. Handshaking on an unlikely truce, the two teams fly off to save an ailing planet but are really falling into a trap— one set by the classic DC other worldly villain, Brainiac.

All the while, on the other side of the galaxy, there is a search going on for Hal Jordan. He is in the netherworld, surrounded by all the past Green Lanterns. It’s peaceful. There’s nice company. But he is still needed and can only be found in the afterlife by none other than the White Lantern, Kyle Rayner.

Penned by Robert Venditti, Bottled Light is a solid follow up to Sinestro’s Law. However, coming off the heels of such an excellent opening story arc, Bottled Light has a hard time keeping the pace started by Sinestro’s Law (see my review for more). While the action is intense and the storyline following the reconnection with Hal Jordan is interesting, Bottled Light has lost a slight step. Now, in storylines as in life, there is always an ebb and flow. Not everything can be off-the-charts at all times.

This is one of those times.

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Bottled Light (Comic) Review 1

That being said, Bottled Light does a good job not only progressing the storyline, but also ties back into the Green Lantern Kyle Rayner. He is a welcome addition to the plot as is Brainiac. In fact, the use of Brainiac gives the storyline a certain grounding. It brings forth another well-known nemesis, one that both casual and diehard fans can recognize and enjoy.

Artists Ethan Van Sciver, Rafa Sandoval, and Ed Benes add their illustrating touches to Bottled Light. For personal preference, using multiple artists can be a distraction for one story arc. One artist offers more continuity. While there wasn’t a cataclysmic issue with the illustrations in Bottled Light, moving between artists in a five issue mini-series does have an impact on the reader’s enjoyment. You may prefer one artist over another. For this reviewer, Rafa Sandoval works best. His action sequences are terrific—well laid out and explosive. And his hero shots have a definite iconic flair.

So, is Bottled Light worth picking up? Yes. It is not only a worthwhile storyline but also one that—should you be enjoying Venditti’s tenure with Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps—progresses this new Rebirth era. It also brings in a few intriguing questions pertaining to the reintroduction of Kyle Rayner and a certain search for hope.

But that will be a discussion for the next Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps story arc.

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1 (Comic) Review

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1 (Comic) Review

Times are tough for Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps. Sinestro and his ever-evil band of Sinestro Corps have won. Sector Zero, the once home to the Guardians of the Universe and the central home of the Green Lantern Corps, is now controlled by Warworld – the yellow powered planet ruled by the diabolical Sinestro. For all intents and purposes, Sinestro has defeated the Green Lantern Corps and the Sinestro Corps are now the universe’s police force.

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1 (Comic) Review 2This is the state of things as we enter into Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1.

What a terrific and desperate beginning it is, too. This is exactly what a kickoff comic is all about. Our heroes are all but dead and buried. Evil reigns and there is no hope in sight – nothing but a small green flicker on the edges of the universe.

That spark is Hal Jordan. He has one final trick up his sleeve to reignite his Green Lantern powers, in a way that has never been tried before. But that’s the good thing about Hal – he’s one to break the rules. On the dead world he’s residing, he’ll need to summon all the imaginative might he can to escape Space Sector 563 and say the Green Lantern oath one more time.

Writer Robert Venditti does a terrific job with Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1.  With great prowess, Venditti gives the reader enough background information with regards to how things ended up for the Green Lantern Corps. This is done through weaving in and out of our hero fighting to exit the dead world. We are told that all the Green Lanterns (Kilowog, John Stewart and Guy Gardener,) have all vanished. Even the Guardians Immortal are gone. For a first issue, the stakes are high – one mistake will plunge the universe into eternal yellow chaos.

This is storytelling at its peak. The audience is not only flung into the action, but tossed into the most critical moment in the universe. It’s exciting, thrilling and evokes a sensation that all truly great superhero stories can – it makes us believe in the impossible.

Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1 (Comic) Review 4Compounding Venditti’s superior storytelling is the artwork of Ethan Van Sciver. Van Sciver brings out Venditti’s larger-than-life script and makes it fresh and bold. The combination of both writer and artist lead us along a masterfully paced sequence of panels – leading up the crescendo of splash pages where we can feel Green Lantern’s light.

Dark times for our heroes are the most exciting times for the audience. We want the hero to win, to vanquish evil. But it can’t be easy. The hero must suffer – he or she must rise above their own weaknesses and become a better version of themselves. This is what is at stake with Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps Rebirth #1. Not only does Hal have to take on the now all powerful Sinestro Corps, he also must travel into the deep recesses of his very soul and do something that’s never been done. Something even the Guardians told him is impossible.

To find out what that is, you’ll have to pick up a copy of the comic. As you can tell from this review, I recommend you do.