Orange Crushed


Green Lantern #41

Larfleeze, a.k.a. Agent Orange, is the sole possessor of the Orange Lantern. He’s the greediest being in the universe, and he’s taken Hal Jordan prisoner. Why? Hal has a green ring and a blue ring — and Larfleeze desperately wants the blue one. Hal gets him to reveal how he came to have the Orange Lantern — he was once a thief who stole an important item from the Guardians and fled to the planet Okaara. There, he and his fellow crooks found a glowing orange lantern and struggled greedily to possess it. The Guardians and the Manhunter robots tried to stop them, but the orange light was too powerful. In order to get their important box back, the Guardians bargained to let the last surviving thief keep the orange lantern and to never interfere with him, as long as he stayed in the Vega System. Larfleeze ended up having the Orange Lantern all to himself, and now he wants his very own Blue Lantern ring. And he’ll stop at nothing to get it, even if Hal can’t get the ring off his finger…

Verdict: Ehh, kind of a wash. Agent Orange’s story is really less than compelling, and the Guardians’ and the Green Lantern Corps’ battle against Larfleeze’s orange light constructs is fairly pedestrian. But the cliffhanger is pretty good. How the heck is Jordan gonna get out of this one…?


Green Arrow and Black Canary: A League of their Own

A compilation of a lengthy storyline from the “GA/BC” series — this one focuses on the quest to find who shot and then kidnapped Green Arrow’s son, Connor Hawke. With Batman and Plastic Man tagging along to help out, Ollie and Dinah eventually trace the hit to Ra’s al Ghul’s League of Assassins — but Ra’s is dead, so who was masquerading as him? Turns out it was Shado, a Yakuza assassin who is the mother of another of Ollie’s kids — she raped him while he was unconscious. Her son is dying of cancer, and Dr. Sivana offered to cure him, as long as she killed Green Arrow. When the hit went wrong and Connor was injured, Sivana had him and Shado’s son kidnapped and genetically treated with some of Plastic Man’s skin cells. So Connor ends up cured, but he’s completely lost his memory and his ability to shoot a bow. On top of all this, we get Mia Dearden, the new Speedy, out on a date. Will her new beau be able to accept her HIV-positive status?

Verdict: I think I’ll give this a thumbs up, because I was quite entertained by the story. The big problem is that writer Judd Winick put this together from the fragments of two of his signature “Let’s kill a random superhero” storylines — first, he “killed” Green Arrow himself, then after handwaving that one away, he “killed” Connor. One gets the feeling that, even for DC’s notoriously kill-happy editors, they thought Winick needed to be reigned in, so we get this long storyarc trying to get the Green Arrow status quo back to normal. I will say that Winick’s strongest abilities lie in characterization and dialogue, so I very much enjoyed Mia’s date and Connor’s post-coma amnesia, which both felt genuine and charming. And Mike Norton’s art is just grand throughout — nothing real flashy, but solid, beautifully created artwork.

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  1. swampy Said,

    June 3, 2009 @ 7:32 pm

    I hope they make a brown Lantern, ala UPS—what can brown do for you? lol