Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Andrei Bressan & Amilcar Pinna
The Third Army is infecting the universe. Kyle sets off to learn to master all the colors of the emotional spectrum so that he can bring the fight to the Guardians. This issue sees Kyle training with Atrocitus to master his rage. Kyle gets his butt kicked around by Atrocitus, unable to channel his rage even as he’s being taunted with the tragic death of his girlfriend Alex. Finally after being forced to watch a father die for his his son is Kyle able to summon his rage.
Right off the bat the first thing that slapped me in the face here was the art. As in I didn’t care for it much. The styles in play here was a bit too Sunday comic strip for my taste. Kyle’s Spartan themed Red Lantern costume was over the top and quite cheesy and I hated the fact that his eyes were completely covered in a rather creepy fashion. He looked like he belonged in a mystery movie as an S&M bondage themed serial killer. I also had a gripe with Atrocitus’s ring on page 6. It was completely flat on his finger and looked like he found it in a box of Cracker Jacks. You can say I’m being picky here but since its a Green Lantern book the rings are super important, plus it’s at the foreground of the panel almost taunting me in a ‘I’m awful looking and I know it’ way. As a writer I’m not really an art guy, I go more for the story, but the art in this book was so off that I had to lead with that.
The story itself was just decent, nothing more really. It was pretty straight forward and a bit boring really. I don’t really care enough about Kyle in this story to root for him either way. Bedard’s script here makes him super pathetic as he gets tossed around by Atrocitus, but he doesn’t show the emotional qualities that make me connect with Kyle to cheer him on. I think Bedard should give the movie Rudy a watch before turning in his next script. Now that movie connects with the audience. Instead Kyle is just kind of blah here.
Then he turns into a complete a-hole after he gains fiery justice for the crowd being terrorized by those troops and heals them with his blue energy. Using his power of Hope,”Ring: heal their wounds. Be quick about it.” Really?! Be quick about it?! That’s not Kyle as I’ve known him to be over the years. It’s as if Bedard totally lost sync with the character. After that he links back up with Carol Ferris’s Star Sapphire to continue on with his training and acts like a dick to her. Another trait I wouldn’t associate with Kyle. I’m guessing that this could be an effect from channeling his rage but it was done a way that made him look like a spoiled douche and less like someone who had just gone through a traumatic ordeal.
I’m really hoping that the next issue steps it up more. This book hasn’t been the best of the New52, but it has been fun at least. I understand with the rise of the Third Army everything is more serious, but the tone of this issue is not what the New Guardians have been about.
2 out of 5 nerds
Follow your man on Twitter @AUDone44 and The Nerd @nerdfollowing