This issue is the perfect jumping on spot for new readers. With two Green Lanterns and Lobo on the cover, what else would you expect?
Tony Bedard uses the Lanterns undergoing a hearing with the Guardians as an “in” for readers to learn about Vril Dox and his L.E.G.I.O.N. Those Lanterns, Gorius Karkum of the Psion Homeworld and Altin Admos, the war-prodigy, battle messiah of the Okaaran Empire, have run afoul of Dox and this issue works back through the story that leads to the first setting in this issue.
That back story naturally pits Lobo against the Lanterns in entertaining fashion. While the bits with Lobo have been done before, and Lobo seems to be holding back a bit, it feels fresh and looks even better. Barry Kitson set the bar high with L.E.G.I.O.N. back in the day, but the work that St. Aubin delivers is right up there with Kitson’s, if it doesn’t surpass Kitson’s. St. Aubin’s art is crisp and clean, and there are quite a few nice, refreshing page and panel choices that offer a new take on a deceptively simple tale. St. Aubin doesn’t employ weird camera angles nor does he overload the scenery. That’s not to say there isn’t a significant level of detail, rather the detail is there as detail, not filler.
Over the course of the story, Vril Dox throws the gauntlet down and draws the line in the sand. Dox’s loathing of the Green Lantern Corps has never been a secret, but in this issue Dox spins the events and paints the Corps as a pest, elevating the status and popular opinion of his own crew. Dox is a political and tactical mastermind and this issue illustrates that magnificently. The rest of the L.E.G.I.O.N., aside from Dox and Lobo, don’t get much panel time in this issue, but they do get a nice establishing shot from St. Aubin. It’s the type of shot that might be at the beginning of a L.E.G.I.O.N. cartoon, if such a beast existed.
Following the savvy marketing move of popping some Green Lanterns on the cover, this issue appears to be bringing the two franchises closer together. L.E.G.I.O.N. appears set to be a nice companion to the Green Lantern franchise, but it is an even better standalone comic. So what are you waiting for? You’ve read this review, you’ve read other reviews, and you’ve heard good things about this book. Maybe it’s time for you to give this book a try.