The Parallax View

Green Lantern #50

The Black Lantern zombies are attacking Coast City, and the various power ring slingers — and their new human recruits, including Green Lantern Ganthet, Red Lantern Mera, Orange Lantern Lex Luthor, Sinestro Corps member Scarecrow, Blue Lantern Flash, Indigo Tribe member Atom, and Star Sapphire Wonder Woman — are busy busting superpowered zombies. But they’re all in trouble when the Black Lantern version of the Spectre shows up — he’s too powerful for any of them to take down. So Hal makes a pretty desperate gamble — from his time serving as the Spectre’s human host, he remembers that the Spectre was afraid of Parallax, the fear-based cosmic parasite that empowers the Sinestro Corps and formerly operated from inside Hal. So he brings Parallax back and lets it take him over. Why do I figure that’s going to be a bad, bad move?

Verdict: Thumbs up. I’m not real fond of the idea of bringing Parallax back for yet another round, but the rest of the comic is just too much fun. The return of Aquababy, Larfleez and Luthor brawling over who gets the orange rings, Scarecrow’s absolute glee over his ring, Hal’s brief service in the Black Lantern Corps (and that means the only rings he hasn’t worn yet are Indigo and Violet… and the inevitable White Lantern), and Doug Mahnke’s fantastic, gory, glorious artwork. Sure, some of the crossover books aren’t so good, but the comics carrying the main story? They’re still rocking.

Detective Comics #861

Batman and Batwoman are both on the trail of a serial killer who abducts college students, then cuts off parts of their bodies — hands in one case, the lower jaw of another. Batwoman encounters the killer, nicknamed Cutter by the police, and is able to save his victim, though he gets away. After the fight, Kate Kane visits her cousin, Bette Kane, college student and former Teen Titan, to see that she’s not in danger. Bette tells her not to worry, but we know how that’s going to turn out, right?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Good art, nice thriller, interesting mystery, and it’s always nice to see Flamebird, even if she’s running around as a college student instead of a superhero.

Madame Xanadu #19

A flashback issue, all the way back to the days before Camelot. We get to know Nimue as the adventurous deer-chasing girl she used to be and Morgana as a deceitful, conniving princess. We watch mankind grow from cavemen to more civilized people, even as Morgana schemes to put them all under her thumb.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Just didn’t feel a big thrill with this one.

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