When I first started writing this review, I was half a paragraph in before I realized that I’d been calling it the wrong name. I wasn’t reviewing “Green Lantern Corps” (as I’d kept writing) but rather, “Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors.” And therein lies the fundamental problem with this new title; it’s just “Green Lantern Corps” with another name, but missing half of its cast.
That’s probably why “Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors” isn’t quite clicking for me, despite the fact that Peter J. Tomasi has proven himself to be a good writer over the past couple of years. Sure, it’s nice to have him still writing Guy Gardner, Arisia, and Kilowog. But it’s not a trio of characters that seems to be able to quite sustain a book on their own, and it makes me think that moving Tomasi and these characters off of “Green Lantern Corps” was a bit of a mistake.
It doesn’t help that Tomasi’s writing is more heavy-handed than I’m used to, with the storyline’s main villain doing everything short of pacing up and down and telling his evil plan to a henchman. It’s a lot of blatant exposition, and while I’m glad that Tomasi is starting to address just what the purpose of “Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors” will be, it’s not quite as smooth or entertaining as I’d hope. Add in some plot developments that seem to happen only because otherwise the storyline would be too easily resolved, and it’s a slightly unsatisfying issue.
Fernando Pasarin and Cam Smith provide the art for the book, and it’s just all right. Characters are a little stiff in places, and actually seem to be bored more than anything else; not exactly an ideal expression for people in the middle of a big fight. And while I’m not against some visual shorthand to help establish a scene quickly, the Daxam street ruffian characters look like an elementary school cast of “Oliver!” more than anything else. It’s so cliche and overly cute that you might go into a bit of sugar shock.
Still, there is some small hope. Sodam Yat was a character that Tomasi had done a good job with in “Green Lantern Corps,” and his return will hopefully give “Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors” a bit more of the boost it needs into something interesting. (Then again, I’d have thought the addition of a Red Lantern to the cast would have already done so.) Right now, though, it’s not quite there.