Over the years, a lot’s been done to the character of Hal Jordan, especially since his transformation into a mass-murdering villain in “Green Lantern” #48-50. Most notably, the revelation that he’d been possessed by an entity named Parallax during that time period rolled in, allowing his eventual restoration to hero status. So, with that in mind, it’s curious to see Tony Bedard, Ron Wagner and Bill Reinhold’s take on the character in “Convergence: Green Lantern/Parallax” #2, which is not only set soon after that original “Green Lantern” storyline, but cheerfully ignores all the additional information that was mixed in after the fact.
In short, “Convergence: Green Lantern/Parallax” #2 seems to go with the original party line: Hal Jordan simply went crazy. There’s no possession here, just madness brought on by the sheer power of holding so many of the Green Lantern rings. So, with that in mind, what are we left with? Not much, as it turns out. Bedard’s story can be boiled down to Hal trying to murder the residents of Electropolis, and poor Kyle Rayner trying to stop him. There’s not a lot of plot to this, though, and — in the end — it stops rather abruptly. Hal’s a mass murderer, Kyle’s somewhat naÃ¯ve and incompetent and, as for Electropolis… well, it’s hard to tell if you’re supposed to feel sorry for them or not. Bedard makes Princess Fern a double-crosser but, at the same time, Hal’s attack wasn’t on her (if anything, she’s one of the only survivors) but on all of the other residents of that city. In short, this is not a terribly pleasant comic to read. It doesn’t really work as a tragedy, either; Kyle’s attempts to stop Hal never seem terribly spirited or impressive, and Hal’s sad sack appearance last month is entirely replaced by the big mad god of Parallax.
Wagner and Reinhold’s art is alright but not memorable, either. Wagner’s somewhat geometric shapes with their sharp edges tell the story well enough — if nothing else, it gives the reader a nasty-looking Hal when he’s at his worst — but it also lacks any real subtlety. Events just crash across the page, and everyone’s intensity is cranked all the way up to the maximum. In the end, it’s a reasonable enough look for the book, but it never does anything to really stand out.
“Convergence: Green Lantern/Parallax” #2 feels like one of the more skippable “Convergence” tie-ins to date. I can’t see fans of either Hal Jordan or Kyle Rayner being terribly happy about the events of this comic. I suppose, if nothing else, it does give us the definitive destruction of one of the other cities of “Convergence,” but that’s hardly reason to pick up this comic. In the end, this feels ill-conceived and a little pointless.