HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43 BY ROBERT VENDITTI, RAFA SANDOVAL, JORDI TARRAGONA, AND TOMEU MORREY
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43 continues "Darkstar Rising" with a closer look at this new faction. Robert Venditti deepens the Darkstars and adds some nuance to the Lanterns' new foes.
93 %
Police Brutality

HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43 starts the next part of “Darkstars Rising.” Writer Robert Venditti expands on the purpose of the Darkstars, making them more them just lethal cops.

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Police Brutality

The issue begins with the Lanterns investigating their new foes’ handiwork. The Darkstars are moving across the universe, with various worlds finding their criminal population slaughtered. Venditti adds a nice touch here, with one world even stating they abolished the death penalty. Hal and co. bring the entire matter to the Guardians. It doesn’t take much convincing this time either. The Guardians order the Lanterns to deal with this new threat (contradicting their stance in the past couple issues). The Lanterns fly off to confront the Darkstars with a gorgeous splash panel.

HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43
HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43 page 5. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

The art team of Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, and Tomeu Morey show off their skill here once again. Their work continues to bring to mind Ivan Reiss with the powerful definition bringing a realism to the shot. The colors are vibrant, the seriousness of the moment is conveyed, and the green is used efficiently without being overdone. It’s simply a great example of this team doing well with even a small scene.

The Lanterns encounter the Darkstars almost immediately, and these newbies show off another power in their arsenal. They teleport the entire Lantern force back to Mogo, save Hal. Jordan awakens from his journey smack dab in the middle of Darkstar HQ.

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Old Friend

Hal isn’t harmed, however, as Tomar-Tu comes out to discuss their current situation. Hal insists his friend is being mind controlled, or that the Darkstars are influencing his behavior. Tomar says that isn’t the case; he’s here because he wants to be. Venditti reminds readers of a harsh truth here, as sometimes even people we trust freely make bad decisions. It’s also a good move that Tomar is calm and rational as he speaks to Hal. This isn’t some kind of takeover like the Red Lantern rings; this is something that requires a clear mind.

Hal still doesn’t believe it though, insisting it’s the Controllers. Tomar shows him just how wrong he is in another amazing visual.

HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43
HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERNS CORPS #43 page 13. Image courtesy of DC Entertainment.

The Controllers are out of the picture, and the Darkstars are acting on their own. This is a major statement, especially with the constant approval of the Darkstars from Tomar. He describes how, despite the many Corps, none of them have truly been able to bring about peace. It’s a dark statement that can make sense as well. The proper way to dispense justice has been up for debate for longer then anyone can remember. Whether lethal or non-lethal, there are always questions about its effectiveness. Imprisonment is just, but criminals can escape. Lethal justice kills people, but it does eliminate threats. It’s an age-old argument that’s being presented in a very understandable way here. It builds the stakes for future stories and debate, especially when you see how the Darkstars outnumber the Corps.

Tomar insists the Lanterns are safe for now but, eventually, the Darkstars will come for the criminals in their Sciencells. They leave, and the Corps finds themselves with only one option left.

Final Thoughts On HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43

HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43 is an effective issue. It adds more depth to the Darkstars, keeping them from being just a brutal killing force. It presents their argument in a way that’s understandable, while also making them seem like a very real threat to the Corps. Hal’s desire to save Tomar adds good emotional weight too, especially now that both of them are on opposite sides of a very real divide. The art team continues to craft amazing visuals that match the drama beat for beat. To put it simply, this is a prime of example of Lantern storytelling and fans should be reading this if they aren’t already.

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