In theory, I like writers like Dave Gibbons, who are willing to take different approaches to comic concepts. I might not always like their different approaches, but I admire their willingness to take a risk. Gibbons' idea of making the Green Lantern Corps basically like a Galactic Marine Corps is very intriguing, and while I'm not sure if it really works with the Green Lantern concept, I think it does work for this book. Outside of the hands of Gibbons and artist Patrick Gleason (and the vet inker Prentis Rollins)? It might not work. But in their able hands, it works.
To begin, there are two ways to handle the first issue of an ongoing series spinning out of a mini-series. The first is to treat the ongoing as a continuation of the mini-series and the second is to treat the ongoing as its own separate first issue. I prefer the latter approach, but Gibbons goes with the former, which, as I said, I think is probably a mistake. In particular, using the "One Year Later" break to say that Guy Gardner never went back to Earth in the past year. A year is a LONG time. It's not a big deal (as a year will basically be treated, I think, as a couple of months, when all this is shaken out), but it was annoying. I think it takes away from the punishment to say in one issue "You are punished for a year" and the next issue is "A year has passed" with no change to the character! That just seems silly.
Anyhow, this issue was action-packed and gritty as all get out. It was basically a John Wayne war movie in space. Which, with this writer and this artist, works pretty darn well.
Two Green Lanterns are assigned to a world under siege, where two princes (that's what I said now) argue over whether they WANT to be bailed out by the Green Lanterns. Tragedy strikes, forcing one Green Lantern to want to quit, until Guy convinces the Lantern otherwise - but will they return to the planet in time to save the day? DRAMA!
Meanwhile, two other Green Lanterns are fighting in a battle, and one of them can't get over the fact that he is stuck paired up with a Lantern from a race he has learned to hate. This is also a bit silly, with the year passing, yet there has been absolutely ZERO progression in this relationship? Silly. The interaction in the issue was cool, but it was cool for two people who just are getting to know each other - not people paired up for a year by now. That also reminds me, they are still called "rookies," even though it's technically been a YEAR since the first mini-series. Silly.
But anyhow, this was a well-illustrated, action-packed comic with some interesting characters (in particular, Guy Gardner and the doctor Green Lantern - I really like her). I would recommend it, with the reservations mentioned above, which is basically that there are some silly characterizations due to picking this comic up where the mini-series left off, but acting like a year has passed, which deeply affects the drama.