Posted by:
Matt McGloin

Review: Green Lantern #61


GREEN LANTERN #61 PREVIEW Writer: Geoff Johns Penciller: Doug Mahnke Inkers: Keith Champagne, Christian Alamy, Tom Nguyen & Mark Irwin Colorist: Randy Mayor Letterer: Nick J. Napolitano Cover: Gary Frank w/Mayor Variant: Alex Garner Publisher: DC Release Date: December 29th, 2010   Seems there was a mix-up on the cover -and solicit?- of this issue as the wrong "guy in green" appears. Seeing how Hal Jordan was not present in the issue, you would think this to be a total loss, but the other green costumed super power does show - The Spectre! This Spirit of Vengeance has been a favorite of mine since the Ostrander days in the 90's. I always look forward to seeing more from God's appointed judge and jury. Here, we have a decent issue as the powers that rage within - take on those that rage without! The Spectre, Atrocitus and the Red Lantern Entity, The Butcher, head off to the Threeway Dance! As of late, it doesn't seem as if the Spectre is as all-powerful as he has been, which continues with this issue. Johns gives a nod to continuity - and retcons - as the Spectre remarks how he warned The Butcher to stay away sometime in the past. This was a nice inclusion and goes to show these Entities are on the same power level as The Spectre. Likewise, it shows The Spectre to be of a similar rank, more on that later. An execution draws The Butcher where a grieving father confronts his daughter's killer. As the Red Rage is about to merge, the Specter makes his presence known - and all hell breaks loose. Atrocitus intervenes, which leads to what you see on the cover, the Red Lantern Entity uniting with a host! As the three battle, some interesting things emerge. For one, as noted above, The Spectre doesn't seem to be his all encompassing self. Actually, once The Butcher merges with the father, he pretty much tells the Spirit of Vengeance where to go - and shuts him up. Without Atrocitus and his Red Lantern, I fear The Spectre may have seen his last day in court. Also interesting, was the Spectre's reaction to the leader of the Red Lantern Corps. Atrocitus calls the Spectre out, as the two are of a similar nature. However, Atrocitus questions The Spectre's method of judgment, defending his own as he is constantly reminded of the victims - while The Spectre is not. What happens next is quite revealing. It further adds to the argument, something we have seen building since Blackest Night, Atrocitus becoming some sort of "hero." I've been on the case of the GL titles, as of late, for not progressing the story enough. This is a good issue as Johns does make some headway. Glad to see we are getting somewhere; the same can be said of the last GLC issue, as well. This is probably my favorite looking Enity, thanks in no small part to artist Doug Mahnke. He out did himself with this issue as he gave us some  bombastic looking panels. With two super-natural creatures, such as The Spectre and The Butcher pitted against one another, Mahnke provides us with the necessary visuals required from two behemoths such as these. Mahnke chose well, when he chose the splash pages and large sized panels for these two. Mahnke zooms in on the Spectre's face, giving us that ominous gaze of death. In the very next panel, he zooms on The Butcher - even more - with a further terrifying depiction. As long as we get more stories that advance the Brightest Day and Lantern Entity enigma, I can't complain. Johns and Mahnke make for a great pairing.