Halfway through reading the latest issue of "Green Lantern Corps," I had to stop and double-check the credits. This really was Tony Bedard and not Peter J. Tomasi, right? The reason why I had to be certain was because with the start of his second storyline, Bedard has proven that he's completely settled in as the book's regular writer, in many ways picking up right where Tomasi left off.
This latest issue focuses on Kyle Rayner and Soranik; since the two of them together was the sort of pairing that evolved so naturally that it almost snuck up on us as readers, it's nice to see Bedard continuing that story. More importantly, this issue feels like a logical extension of everything that's happened from "The Sinestro Corps War" onward in regard to Sinestro and his connection to Qward.
Bedard's writing is at its strongest to date on "Green Lantern Corps," setting up the current situation, throwing in some jokes ("Where is the real Green Lantern?" is bound to get a few laughs, especially from longer-term readers), but still keeping things moving quickly and escalating in danger. It's a good opening chapter, and it's nice to see Bedard's writing skills getting used on a book with a built-in audience to appreciate them.
Tyler Kirkham and Batt make their debut as the art team for "Green Lantern Corps" here, and while Kirkham's particular style isn't one that I actively seek out (it reminds me a lot of the style that Top Cow's books aim for), they do a good enough job. Kirkman's pencils are big and flashy, but there's still a good panel-to-panel progression, and there are little moments that jumped out at me where I found myself nodding in approval. (Something as simple as the Weaponer's face being hidden in shadow and only seeing the reflection off his goggles, for instance, adds a nice visual punch to the deliberately ominous message given to Rayner to relay.) I could do with less rippling abs and bulging veins, but on the whole it's not bad a tall.
"Green Lantern Corps" fans should definitely be happy with Bedard at the helm of the ship now; it feels, story-wise, just like it did when Tomasi was still in charge. Some of the other titles in this corner of the DC Universe might be flailing around a bit, but "Green Lantern Corps" is holding steady and is still as entertaining as always.