Hal Jordan travel back home only to find he’s on the matriarchal Earth 11 and witness to a wedding proposal that will have your head spinning. But, with Liam Sharp on art duties, once again this title rises to the top of the pile. A true classic of the medium in the making and the penultimate issue of this epic run.
Grant Morrison can be a challenging writer and The Green Lantern Season 2 #9 is one issue that really tests the reader’s mettle. It’s another bonkers issue that is an absolute marvel to behold thanks to Liam Sharp’s recent endeavours in digital colouring that raises his game immensely and offers the reader one of the best looking books on the shelves. Each page looks like a painting and exudes quality. The comic book format just doesn’t seem fitting enough for this kind of sumptuous, lavish art. I imagine in another world and another time this would have been better served as a prestige format book, or at the very least an oversized DC Black Label title. Maybe somewhere down the road DC Comics might thing about an Absolute omnibus edition.
We start at the trial of Hyperman where Hal Jordan is witness for the prosecution, before his return to Earth. Although it doesn’t seem to be going too well. So, when he heads back to Earth it’s not his planet and it’s certainly not his Carol Ferris he finds there being proposed to be a rather beta-male Jordan. Welcome to Earth 11, the topsy-turvy world in which gender roles are swapped and female heroes roam the cities of America fighting crime.
Behind a Gil Kane inspired pop art cover we get not only the story of a proposal gone wrong but we also get to meet the “bad guys” of the Green Lantern Corps – sports jocks with power rings – of this parallel universe and the alternate history of their first contact with Earth. Then there’s the Golden Destroyer. And that is when I really lost the thread and just enjoyed the ride.
As well as Sharpie’s distinctive art, he also leans into the artistic stylings of Bill Sienkiewicz, which this digital take suits immensely well, along with several contrasting panels that roll back the labour-intensive art style with more light, almost texture free panels. In many ways, while Morrison has remixed the best and the greatest of the Silver Age Green Lantern lore into one definitive, albeit it psychedelic, Sharp has integrated a great deal of artistic styles heavily associated with Green Lantern stories of the past, as well as just straight-out artistic greats such as this issue’s Sienkiewicz homage.
Morrison’s Doom Patrol-era madness seems to have haunted much of this second season’s writing and demands at east a second read. And, with only one issue left of this epic, history-making run, I can’t wait until the day I can sit back and read the whole cosmic trip all in one go.
The whole of this second season has had a lysergic acid diethylamide vibe to it like no other. The kind of vibe you’d get from old-school Heavy Metal – a comparison I have made before I’ll admit, but worth repeating – and one perfectly justifiable for this book. This may be a fancier way of saying, “Superheroes, but on acid,” but I cannot think of any other better description. Particularly because of the subject matter. I mean, come on, a cosmic space cop that crosses into other dimension on a regular basis? Sounds like a concept album from Pink Floyd if you ask me. And one I’d listen to in a heartbeat.
This title, this run, shows what comics can attain to and a blueprint for would-be comic creators to admire and learn from both narratively and artistically.
The Green Lantern Season 2 #9 is out now from DC Comics