Ever had the feeling that a comic book is stalling? Right now that's what "Green Lantern" post-"Flashpoint" is looking like; a book that has a fun story idea in mind, but it's doling out the material as slowly as possible.
The idea behind this storyline, with Hal Jordan forced to become Sinestro's sidekick and the pair of them traveling to Sinestro's old homeworld, is certainly sound. But it's moving at a snail's pace, unfortunately. We get page after page of the pair in prison cells, and there's a whole lot of nothing padding those moments out. Hal's sequence in his cell is the worst offender; taking up 20% of the comic and presenting nothing in terms of plot save for an obvious (and quite frankly, trite) character moment about his love for Carol. Having a pause in the action for something fresh or new is one thing, but this is a retread of material we've seen before, and it feels a bit dumbed down, too.
The scene with Sinestro imprisoned and being confronted with the citizens of Korugar (whom during his original stint as a Green Lantern, he terrorized) is thankfully more interesting, but once again it's ridiculously slow. There's nothing lively or (unfortunately) even terribly exciting about the scene. We at least get to a good moment on one of the last pages when Sinestro does something for the first time this issue and unleashes the rings, but it's a little too late.
Doug Mahnke's pencils look great, thankfully. They're doing a lot of the work here, with Hal Jordan trying to smash his way out of his cell, or Sinestro on the operating table. Sinestro comforting the child in the cell is a great quieter scene, too; Sinestro manages to look both compassionate and creepy in one fell swoop, which is no small feat. Still, though, there's only so much that Mahnke's art can do to liven up the title.
Too much of "Green Lantern" #4 is filled up with ideas that don't work (both inside the story as well as creatively), and while the art is great and the overall plot is interesting, the execution is still a little lacking. "Green Lantern" used to be one of my favorite titles at DC, but right now it feels like it's hoping to hang onto readers through inertia. For this reader, at least, that inertia is dropping off, fast.