WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Justice League Odyssey#13 by Dan Abnett, Will Conrad, Rain Beredo, Cliff Richards and Andworld Designs, on sale now.
Jessica Cruz has had quite a storied journey as a Green Lantern. After some trouble getting accepted by the Corps, Hal Jordan quickly came to see the worth of her and fellow newbie Simon Baz, recognizing she was well on course, not just to becoming someone who could be a Justice League leader someday, but one of the best Lanterns period.
This all came to a grinding halt in Justice League Odyssey. While investigating the Ghost Sector with Azrael, Cyborg and Starfire, she perished in the line of duty. However, the latest issue reveals that, rather than die by Darkseid's Omega Beams as initially thought, Jess has been resurrected, and this time she's back with Darkseid's powers and could well be one of the most powerful individuals in the entire DC Universe.
Jessica has faced death before. In Darkseid War she stared down the Lord of Apokolips and his armies, only for her ring -- which was programmed by the malevolent Power Ring entity -- to be cleansed and help her return to the light, free of corruption. And in this book, Jess has been living up to her reputation, as well as the potential Hal saw in her.
But when Darkseid mentally conditioned and brainwashed her three superhero allies, as she tried to fight back Jess had her hand and ring shattered by Darkseid and was burned to a crisp. Here, a science cell belonging to the Zamarons (the female versions of Malthusians), in their research on the destruction of the Source Wall, makes a major move that changes Jess' fate. Using a device called the Summoner meant to seek out New Gods, because the likes of New Genesis etc. are all seemingly dead after the Wall fell, the Summoner pulls into the ship items that have Darkseid's residual energy on them, thinking they're the last of the New Gods.
The Father Box Darkseid used to kickstart the building of Sepulkore (his death engine) to open his own pocket universe away from Lex Luthor and Perpetua arrives, as well as Blackfire, Starfire's sister who aided Darkseid earlier on in this title. Lastly, Jess' corpse is teleported in from Sepulkore, looking disintegrated and on the verge of ashes as per Final Crisis when Darkseid hit Batman with his Omega Sanction. However, the science team, which includes the mysterious space cop, Okkult, and the Red Lantern, Dex-Starr, deduces there is a lot of Omega radiation inside her remains, making her different. However, as they assess other options of tracking Darkseid in the other room, shockingly a rejuvenated Jess returns to life, eager to rejoin the battle and save her friends.
The cell's leader, Arla Hax, believes the Omega Energy was absorbed by her ring before it was destroyed and this was repurposed to revive her should she die. When Darkseid's Paraangels attack after tracking the vessel, though, Jess' powers come full-circle as she uses Omega Energy blasts from her fists to kill them all. That's right, she doesn't need her ring, Jess is a walking, talking avatar for Omega Energy and could now truly be the equalizer to Darkseid. She even has a sinister air to her, enjoying her murder spree against the creatures, leaving us wondering if she could be corrupted or possessed, maybe even by the Anti-Life Equation tied so closely to Darkseid.
It's interesting to see Arla block her communique to the other Green Lanterns as well, which hints she could have plans of her own for this New God meets Green Lantern. Admittedly, we don't fully understand the scope and limitation of Jess' powers currently, but from the little we've seen she's been upgraded big time and is poised to change the fate of the DC cosmos as she searches for her colleagues.
Justice League Odyssey #14 goes on sale Oct. 9.