It’s all led to this. The Green Lantern Corps is gripped in a battle to the death with the massive Darkstar army, but John Stewart has made it clear that no ring-slinger is to take a life today. That proves pretty challenging, especially since the Lanterns have teamed up with Arkillo and General Zod. Meanwhile, Hal Jordan goes toe-to-toe with Tomar-Tu at the Darkstar Central Command. Needless to say, Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #50 is one action-packed issue.
This comic serves as a showcase for artist Rafa Sandoval’s talents. It’s an absolute tour de force of intense sci-fi action from beginning to end. On one side you’ve got the Corps going all out against the Darkstars with some of the most impressive and intricate constructs ever. The rings are pushed to their limits with much more than just simple energy blasts.
On the other side is Hal vs. Tomar-Tu, which features even more constructs as Hal tries to reason with his former colleague. Tomar-Tu has faced so much tragedy in his life that could not be prevented by the powers of a Green Lantern. By killing the killers, he can ensure that no further lives are taken, but at what cost? His soul is being eaten away, leaving a shell of the man he once was. Hal is physically pummeling Tomar-Tu while dropping all kinds of truth bombs left and right.
This series has shown how Hal Jordan is the greatest Green Lantern of all and this issue is just further proof of that statement. The guy has more than earned his stripes. He does not give up, even when the odds are stacked against him and he’s willing to put his own personal safety at risk if it means saving the lives of others. That right there is what makes a hero.
When Hal unleashes his final attack, he does so in a flourish of green energy. This is the same shade as the ring constructs, but filled with an added intensity. Colorist Tomeu Morey makes it seem as if Hal is channeling his very being into this attack, ascending into some higher form of pure green light. It is as beautiful as it is deadly.
This transformation coincides with a change to his speech. Letterer Dave Sharpe transitions Hal’s word balloons from the traditional white with black font to green with white font, adding an additional flair. It’s another detail that makes for an awesome package.
Although this is the end of this series, it also serves as a new beginning. The Green Lantern Corps faced perhaps its greatest challenge yet where they were outnumbered and outgunned and came through by working together and out-thinking their opponent. The final pages of this issue serves as the opening to the next chapter of the Corps, filled with hope and the promise of great things to come.
In looking at Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps as a whole, writer Robert Venditti performed an impressive feat. This is a long form story that has a beginning, middle, and end. It weaved through multiple storylines and elements of almost all of them came together for the final chapters. Venditti picked up characters that have been around for decades and did something new and exciting with them. Now, at the end of this run, he’s put the toys back in the box for whoever comes next. This is a bittersweet feeling as I’ve loved this series from the start.