Thursday, June 18, 2009

Emerald Eclipse: Part Five (DC)
Where: Green Lantern Corps #37 When: August 2009 Why: Peter J. Tomasi How: Patrick Gleason

Strength: Scar 7 (Omnipotent)
Intelligence: Scar 7 (Infinite Wisdom)
Speed: Draw 3 (Athlete)
Stamina: Scar 7 (Unstoppable)
Agility: Lyssa Drak 3 (Acrobat)
Fighting: Lyssa Drak 3 (Street Wise)
Energy: Scar 7 (Cosmic)

Math: Scar
Ranking: Scar (#441)

At this point, we're so far behind on updates, we might as well just enjoy the content for what it is. This was the issue originally selected for what's become a weekly instalment of the Quick Fix, but at the time of updating, I felt I could not overlook Flash: Rebirth #3. The week of June 10 really served up a solid week of comics from both Marvel and DC, but GLC #37 takes pride of place for a moment that can be described as the unofficial beginning of Blackest Night!

I don't want to spend too much time on this, so you can consider it the first time the Quick Fix has actually lived up to the name. Fortunately for us, the moment key to our post took place over a mere three pages -- but what long anticipated and exciting pages they were!

Those new to the website might like clarification -- around here, we do things a little different to other review sites. "Secret Wars on Infinite Earths" not only refers to the two definitive comics crossovers of the mid-eighties, but also the endless battles undertaken by characters from different companies, mediums, and internal universes. It is a literal description of our "fight league" format that both ranks and records combatants and their battles in various comics.

While the prophecized "War of Light" spills over into the prison system of Oa's Sciencell holding facilities; one of the prisoners representing the Yellow Corps of fear slinks away to retrieve their sacred text -- The Book of Parallax.

Lyssa Drak, keeper of the book, uses her ring to tap into the unique energies of the scripts. It leads her deep beneath the planet Oa, into cavernous darkness not lit by the light of the Guardians or their Green Lantern Corps. There she discovers not the Book of Parallax, but rather, a black text brimming with the dark powers of death. This is the Book of the Black Lanterns, written with the oozing black tears spilled from the eyes of a fallen Guardian.
"She" is Scar -- tainted by the burning touch of the Anti-Monitor [Green Lantern #25], which left her both physically disfigured and emotionally unhinged.

As you might have gathered, the "fight" is brief.
Scar ambushes Lyssa Drak and forces her into the book, to a fate that we can only imagine at this point. Perhaps she is merely imprisoned, or perhaps she will rise at a later date, to join the army of Black Lanterns that will spread across the universe. Maybe hers is a fate even more esoteric in it's cosmic nature.

While the Green Lanterns fight to maintain order on Oa, Scar initiates the beginning of the Blackest Night from beneath the planet's surface. Spewing black energy that threatens to destroy the Central Power Battery and Oa itself!

When you consider that the first teaser for Blackest Night ran as an epilogue to Green Lantern #25 [in 2007], you can appreciate how such a seemingly small gesture can take on such huge significance! Scar has been influencing the course of the War of Light and the fate of the Guardians for the better part of twelve months, if not longer, culminating in this first specific act of defiance.

Blackest Night won't technically begin until July with the release of the first issue of the Geoff Johns/Ivan Reis mini-series. The Prelude, however, has been running for quite some time, both in Johns' Green Lantern, and the surpassing companion work of Peter Tomasi in this series, Green Lantern Corps. With Johns so heavily bogged down by the introduction of an entire spectrum of Lantern Corps, it's been an unremarkable surprise to see Tomasi and the secondary book take first place.

Multiple plot-lines have meant this is a book of both great quality, and also quantity, delivered beautifully with pencils from Patrick Gleason and complimentary inks and colours, in this issue, by the split duos of Rebecca Buchman & Tom Nguyen, and Randy Mayor & Gabe Eltaeb.

Mongul's coup within the Sinestro Corps; their invasion of Daxam; the self-sacrificing destruction of Sodam Yat; the secret search for Anti-Monitor's corpse; and other little details have been the complimentary storylines to the building Blackest Night sub-plot. It seems a travesty that we haven't been able to focus on more of it, but in those occasions where it might have been preferable, it has sometimes just been too vast in scope to be represented by our format.

I don't doubt that Blackest Night-proper will take a major role in our reviews as we move through the middle of the year. We already know Black Lantern versions of Martian Manhunter and Earth-2 Superman are set to send a shockwave through the DCU, but this is almost certainly only the tip of the iceberg. This is an event I'm actually concerned about, particularly with the DCU taking so many unlikely turns in recent years. I hope this is not to be the end of our generation of this universe, comparable to the Crisis on Infinite Earths maxi-series that allowed DC Comics to rearrange it's properties and effectively start over.

Our Infinite Wars: Blackest Night speculation post has undergone some updates, but as noted on the page, I think we've quickly realised that Blackest Night is to have an effect far grander than initially thought. This isn't a mere confrontation between forces, ala; Sinestro Corps War, but rather, a catastrophic cosmic event!

The Fight: 3 The Issue: 5.5
Winner: Scar

Green Lantern Corps is currently available monthly from DC comics, but you can pre-order the collected edition of "Emerald Eclipse" -- including all the action describe in this review -- via! By using purchase links provided on the site, you help sponsor future entries of the Infinite Wars. You can find more items in our Gift Shoppe, where collections of almost all issues reviewed in the Secret Archives are available. You'll find stories like Green Lantern: Rebirth and Sinestro Corps War!

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