GREEN LANTERNS #44 BY TIM SEELEY, RONAN CLIQUET, AND HI FI
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
GREEN LANTERNS #44 begins "Ghosts of the Past" as Jessica gets an offer from Singularity Jane. Tim Seeley and Co. mix psychological drama and black holes as this new storyline kicks off.
85 %
Down The Hole

GREEN LANTERNS #44 dives into a new storyline “Ghosts Of The Past” and into the psyche of Lantern Jessica Cruz. Thus far, the story looks to be an excellent psychological journey that keeps the sci-fi elements strong.

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In Session

The issue opens with Jessica in therapy, discussing an early memory that may have shown early signs of her anxiety disorder. The therapist attempts to get Jessica to discuss another incident though. She wants Jessica to go into the source of her issues — the slaughter of her friends during a camping trip. Unsurprisingly, Jessica doesn’t want to talk about it, even though the therapist clearly sees it as something she needs to acknowledge. Jessica responds negatively, even saying that the therapist thinks she’s withholding information, and flies off.

GREEN LANTERNS #44
GREEN LANTERNS #44 page 3. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Writer Tim Seeley plays this scene perfectly. Jessica’s actions are excellently in tune with her character, but also hold irony. Past issues show her criticizing Simon Baz for using his GL work as an excuse not to deal with problems. Jessica does the same thing here, using an alert to leave the session. Seeley portrays said session perfectly too.

While I don’t suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, I’ve gone to therapy for anxiety and know people who suffer from it. Therefore, much of this session is familiar to me. It’s very tempting to deal with the symptoms of these problems and not delve into the cause, even though that usually means that the problem isn’t going to go away. Jessica’s denial is both frustrating for the reader (who knows she needs to talk) and totally understandable. This short scene hints at the conflict for the rest of the storyline.

Return From Darkness

The call that lets Jessica escape therapy brings her and Simon Baz to the Free Machine System. They find their old foe, Singularity Jain, there. The artistic team of Ronan Cliquet and Hi-Fi continue their great work with alien races that’s emerged in past issues. Here they’re given an inorganic world to develop and create just as much visual eye candy as they did with the shape-shifting Durlans in the previous issue.

The setting looks like a Borg homeworld overlaying a human city. It’s mechanized, but most buildings are still recognizable. The team clearly has fun with the character designs too. Look at the huge tank-bot talking to a robot lawyer with his (cyborg?) daughter.

GREEN LANTERNS #44
GREEN LANTERNS #44 page 6. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Seeley keeps up the drama as the tank-bot succumbs to his own post-traumatic stress, and goes on a rampage. Baz leaves to stop him, while Cruz holds Jane in place. Jain explains that she sensed Jessica’s past evil as Power Ring before but, unlike her other victims, Jain couldn’t see where Jessica’s problems started.

Dark Therapy

She surmises Jessica’s fear of something she doesn’t know makes her fear everything. The whole scene is a great call-back to the words of the therapist, and actually make Jain seem in the right. After all, Jessica can’t face her problem if she doesn’t know what it is. So Jane makes her an offer.

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While this goes on, Baz has his own moment of reflection facing the tank-bot. The art team again excels with the fight scenes, from a tank transformation to capturing emotion on a robotic face. The tank-bot echoes Baz’s own past of being forced into a role and being stuck in it no matter what he does. It makes the robots seem more human, and also reminds the reader that most problems are universal. Baz still has to take the robot down though, and he and Jessica return to Earth with Jane. However, the end of the issues hints Jain and Jessica had some words before they left.

Final Thoughts on GREEN LANTERNS #44

GREEN LANTERNS #44 works as a character piece and as part one of an action-packed story. Seeley and Co. continually show their ability to balance sci-fi and character, while crafting gripping storylines. This issue promises a new look into the mind of Jessica Cruz and if they continue to show the same level of understanding here, it should be a great ride.

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