GREEN LANTERNS #56 BY DAN JURGENS, MIKE PERKINS, AND HI-FI
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
GREEN LANTERNS #56 continues "Evil's Might" as Hank Henshaw's forces start furthering their schemes. Dan Jurgens create a solid, but still filler, issue that mainly moves the story around.
68 %
Shifting Story

GREEN LANTERNS #56 continues “Evil’s Might” with Hank Henshaw expanding his plans for the Lanterns and their worlds. Dan Jurgens creates a solid story, but it still feels like filler before a much bigger entry.

Back Into The Fire

The issue opens with Simon Baz sneaking back onto Mogo, ready to free his fellow Lanterns. There’s some good internal dialogue, as Baz wants to redeem the mistakes Henshaw tricked him into making. The artwork fails to balance it out though.

GREEN LANTERNS #56
GREEN LANTERNS #56 page 1. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

The art team of Hi-Fi and Mike Perkins still struggle with dark colors and muddy textures. The alien ships lack detail. Baz’s eye bulges out in a way that can’t be ignored. I’ve talked about these two having problems before and, at this point, I think they need to work in the light as much as possible.

Baz finds Hank Henshaw, the Ravagers, and Eon holding the other Lanterns captive. Jurgens falls under the trap of letting Henshaw gloat too much. Some of this can be excused since he did manage to capture his enemies. The Lanterns (even Hal) can’t use their rings to escape, and this forces Baz to find a different solution.

This aspect of the story works much better. Jurgens writes Baz as being creative and thinking outside the box when faced with impossible odds. Baz uses these skills to seek out the one Lantern that Henshaw’s ignored — the injured John Stewart. This is a smart move for Baz, and not just for numbers. Stewart fought without a ring as a Marine. Baz has similar experience, and cleverly thought to bring weapons from the Fortress of Solitude. Again, this shows Baz’s ingenuity and gives these two Lanterns a chance to demonstrate their skills without the ring.

Prison Break

As Stewart and Baz plan their attack, Henshaw further torments the Lanterns by mocking their motto of “no fear.” This scene looks much better with the bright lights, even though Henshaw’s side appears to be swelling.

GREEN LANTERNS #56
GREEN LANTERNS #56 page 9. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Henshaw insists the Lanterns all have a deep seated fear. He further claims that, for Hal, his fear is Henshaw and the destruction he brought to Coast City years ago. This is another good move by Jurgens, as it plays on their past and makes Henshaw have a bigger psychological edge over Hal. At the same time though, the history between these two has been bought up plenty of times before. Since Jurgens was the one who wrote Henshaw destroying the city, it feels more him going into his professional history rather than creating something new.

New Target

Henshaw makes things worse as he threatens to go back to Coast City and finish the job permanently. It’s at this moment Baz and Stewart attack, wisely focusing on Eon (who’s holding the Corps prisoner). The Lanterns free themselves and engage in fisticuffs with the Ravagers. Baz and Cruz get a reunion (which is sadly Cruz’ biggest moment in the issue) and John reveals their secret weapon — Mogo. The sentient planet had created lighting storms to fight off Henshaw’s infection, and uses them against the Ravagers. It’s a nice move, but it’s odd considering Mogo appeared to be silent and even injured in previous issues.

Henshaw escapes in the chaos, and the Guardians realize he’s gone off-world. Hal immediately flies after him, as Henshaw teleports to Earth.

Final Thoughts On GREEN LANTERNS #56

GREEN LANTERNS #56 is another decent issue, but it also feels like a stepping stone. Henshaw’s rants and threats feel old hat, and they’re just there to get Coast City as the background for the next issue. Jurgens seems to be reliving his past with Hal and Henshaw without adding many new elements. The story has good turns, but it’s dull overall, especially when this book used to be about the fresher Baz and Cruz. The art teams shifts between mud and clarity, and still can’t figure out how to do dark space properly. All in all, this book isn’t bad, but it’s sadly good the end of this story is in sight.

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