Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors #11
By Josh Dean
July 1, 2011 - 20:23
Writer(s): Peter J Tomasi
Penciller(s): Bernard Chang
Inker(s): Bernard Chang
Colourist(s): Gabe Eltaeb
Letterer(s): Rob Leigh
Cover Artist(s): Dan Panosian
Back in the day, before comic shops were the primary place I purchased comics, my ability to get consecutive issues kind of relied on the inventory at the local Fast Fare store. Getting a complete storyline was a rare occurrence. To make matters worse, every now and then, an issue would pop up by the normal writer but a totally different art team. It wasn’t until I was older that I realized these were called Inventory Stories and were produced to be shelved for a rainy day. If your superstar artist is slow as molasses (and let’s face it, which one isn’t?) and you see his pages won’t be done in time to ship the book, bust out the Inventory so you have something on the shelf. Marvel made a whole series out of these unused stories (called Marvel Fanfare) and they are honestly some of my favorite comics.
This issue is a pretty good examination of who Guy Gardner is and what he does. Called in by Salaak to aid a diplomatic ship that is in distress, Guy tries to rush things so he can get home and watch some baseball. When the diplomat he saves asks to see him, he tries to “Captain Kirk” her as she is a fine looking blue woman. The fact that he is pretty committed to Ice (I thought) is willfully ignored to move the plot along. There are a few twists and Guy finds himself confronting some hostile aliens without his ring.
This is a well-told story. It will not blow your mind or make you see Guy Gardner in a whole new way. However, if you are a fan and you wanted to show someone else why you dig the character, you could fork over 20 year old Justice League International issues or just hand them this. Tomasi is one of the unsung heroes of the DC writing staff, in my opinion. Since his turning full-time to the task since renouncing his editorial duties, he has demonstrated a clear understanding of the characters and what makes them work. It has action, surprises and a consistent voice.
Bernard Chang handles the art here and acquits himself well. At this point, he is a proven commodity. His style is reliable and clean, not in the least bit showy. His action is clear and easy to follow with only three characters to draw (essentially) he handles their presentation well. Again, this isn’t the kind of story that will razzle-dazzle with the art but it is fine example of what a talented artist can do with a solid script.
If you are bugged by stories that don’t seem to adhere to current continuity or that exist in their own bubble without affecting the ongoing plot, you can skip this one. If you are like me, and like a good one-off or you want to know who Guy Gardner is, pick this one up.
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