Green Lantern #176
Writer: Ron Marz
Artist: Luke Ross
I… Okay, this is just wrong.
recent review of Fantastic
I offered some general guidelines new series writers should
consider when taking over a long running series. Ron Marz
just broke all of them.
time around, Kyle and his group of former Green Lanterns
took down Black Circle crime syndicate head Amon Sur (son
of late GL Abin Sur) while the Guardians defended Oa from
a Qwardian black hole generator. Blowing up the generator
only caused a “permanent black hole” to form,
however, and the Guardians decided to kill off Kyle for
the cryptic reason of “maintaining a balance”.
Kyle’s dying words were “screw destiny”
as his ring flared up and then appeared on the hand of his
protégé Terry at the end of the issue.
decides to start his run with a brief Green Lantern roll
call of sorts, then shifts to Kyle, back on Earth, wondering
what he should do with his life.
it gets better.
explains to the reader that he projected himself into his
ring and willed it to find Terry, then released himself
from the ring and everything was hunky-dory (my god, I can’t
believe I just wrote that).
to his apartment in New York, hoping to find his girlfriend
Jenny, but instead finds her new boyfriend in his shower.
Jen arrives and promptly starts a fight with Kyle about
him running around playing space cowboy while she was all
by her lonesome on Earth. He nearly calls her a whore, she
slaps him, he leaves. Relationship over.
be fair to Marz and admit that Benjamin Raab left this series
with a lot of baggage. For any who don’t remember,
Kyle proposed to Jenny with a working GL ring and let her
keep it even though she turned him down. Then he returned
her original superhero powers to her during his stint as
Ion. How many boyfriends you know do that?
understandable that Raab chose to write her falling out
of love with him and even meeting another guy while he was
gone, but the way he did it -- having her not respond to
Kyle’s message home, nor go to space to see Kyle,
nor keep her new relationship from flowering in Kyle’s
apartment -- that was just… yikes. Should she have
waited for him like a dowdy little housewife? No, but there
are better ways of going about things than banging your
new guy in your old guy’s bed while he’s gone.
Marz doesn’t allow Jenny to calmly and rationally
try to explain things to Kyle, which she would probably
be ready for by now (especially considering how far her
current relationship has advanced). He just has her burst
on the scene, chew out Kyle for being rude to her new boyfriend,
complain that she’s been paying the rent on the apartment
for the last few months, and say that it’s over. She
seems a bit remorseful, but clearly comes off like the bad
guy, and, even though this is a comic, this is one fight
that shouldn’t have a bad guy.
this just reflects Marz’s haphazard continuation of
the story. Isn’t there a new black hole floating around
the galaxy now? Don’t the Guardians want Kyle dead?
Doesn’t Kyle remember that the Guardians tried to
kill him? Are the former GLs from the last arc going to
reform the Corps? Is Terry still moving out west to continue
his work as a gay rights spokesman? We have no clue.
tosses us into a Green Lantern that has little to do with
the main events of the last few arcs, bringing the flow
of the story to a screeching halt. He then ends the issue
with a new conflict from an old arc that hasn’t even
been referenced in nearly three years, but, before that,
he brushes off the events of the last issue as some kooky
mishap and acts as though they never happened.
deal has been made of how the series will end at #181 and
restart with both a new first issue and Hal Jordan returned
to the role of Green Lantern. More accurate wording is that
he’ll be alive again and have a ring (the rest is
still a bit hush-hush). But does this mean they’re
going to dump Kyle as unceremoniously as they did Hal? It
sure feels like the writers are gunning for him.
no easy solution to resurrecting Hal Jordan, but screwing
up the current Green Lantern is certainly not the right
way to go about it. I could easily accept it if they did
a title swap and turned the current volume into Green
Lantern Corps (like they did with the last one) then
allowed Hal his clean start with a new volume of Green
Lantern. But giving the current story a sloppy ending
so they start from scratch…
it’s starting to feel like “Emerald Twilight”
all over again.