By Cat Wyatt
Issue #42 of Green Lanterns continues the saga that the last few issues have carried us on. Simon and Jess have figured out that thanks to an online dating app superheroes (usually of a lower level) have been getting abducted. In the last issue, they were able to get an idea of where the heroes were being held captive. Meanwhile, the cause for all of this distress (Night Pilot), has been moved to a secondary location for reasons unknown.
And that is where this issue begins. Out on the Rim of Barnard 33, we find Night Pilot being escorted by Priestess Glout, but on Earth, she is more likely to be seen and recognized as the male superhero Equilibrian. Apparently the two ladies (is that the correct descriptor, in this case?) had had a lovely date through the Caper app, and Equilibrian was so impressed by Night Pilot that s/he had to steal her away for their nefarious plans. What those plans are, I’m still not so sure of.
Meanwhile back at Mogo Simon and Jess are trying to come up with a plan to get to the Horsehead Nebula, the location of the prisoners. Unfortunately, the religious cult that owns that sector is very…thorough…and has made it clear that no law officials are allowed in without permission (and naturally if the Green Lanterns sought permission, they would stall and use that time to move the prisoners). So the only solution to this mess (apparently) is for Simon and Jess to act like they would wish to convert and travel amongst the rest of the pilgrims.
Which is an interesting notion, in truth. Jess has made it clear that she’s never felt a strong tie with any religion, so pretending to convert doesn’t make her the least bit uncomfortable. The real concern in this matter is Simon, but he believes his faith is strong, and he’d be forgiven for pretending to convert since it is to rescue those who need it (and if I'm honest I can’t fault him on his logic here).
Do you remember Scrapps? The woman who unwillingly helped them get this lead? Well as it turns out, she’s feeling pretty bitter and burned by the whole operations he had been working for. She had no clue that the tech she was smuggling was directly being used to kidnap heroes. It may surprise you to hear this, but Scrapps has very particular and strong opinions about slavery; mainly that she’s very much opposed to it. So Simon and Jess will not be going on this quest alone (the truth of the matter is they couldn’t stop her even if they wanted to).
I’m actually pretty happy to see Scrapps along for the ride. Not only is she an interesting character but redemption plots are usually so interesting, so I’m hoping we get a good one from her. I also wouldn’t mind seeing her become a more consistent character for the series, even though I agree that is highly unlikely.
So remember how I said they were going to have to travel the rest of the pilgrims and converts? Well, as it turns out those ships travel a lot slower than a Green Lantern could fly, plus they’re incredibly crowded. It probably doesn’t need to be said, but I’ll say it anyway; Jess is extremely uncomfortable with this situation. This is pretty much everything she’s been trying to avoid and it’s only with Simon’s calming words that she’s able to get through this (and no, if you’re looking for a great confession from her about the ideal matchup, she doesn’t really get the chance to here, so I think she was trying).
The pace picks up significantly (which is saying something) upon their arrival. Instead of listening to the creepy welcoming speech courtesy of High Rider Griva (pompous, no?), they opted for starting their search and rescue mission asap. I don’t know why this surprised me as much as it did. I guess I was expecting them to draw things out a bit further?
Regardless it takes little effort (and a mere three pages) to find the captive heroes. Granted, the fight isn’t over once they’ve been found. In fact it actually triggers a bigger fight that Simon and Jess had anticipated. I will say that I loved the different ways of handling the fight. Simon faced it head on – trying to bully his way to the higher ranking members; Scrapps aimed for the heart of the mission (which I actually think was a good call – cut off the head and the rest dies with it); meanwhile Jessica went for a solution that’d stop her friends from attacking. It was a great way of showing the different ways of thinking and problem solving between the three characters. Hopefully taking on the issue on three different fronts will give them the solution they need.
I’ll admit I’m really curious to see where this plot will be heading next. It’s clear that Night Pilot is in the center of things now, and that has me worried for Simon (mostly his mental wellbeing). I think he’s going to be getting an emotional gut punch sooner rather than later (though an attempt has been made in this issue – I don’t think it’ll be as heavy hitting in comparison to what is sure to happen next). I’m happy they took so much time to build up this plot, but I also can’t wait to see how they end up concluding it.
As per usual the artwork in Green Lanterns is fantastic. The fight scenes in this issue were particularly well done (with lots of light and clear indicators of the kidnapped heroes being controlled). Likewise the last panel showed was probably my favorite in the set, it’s bright and dramatic and also has me very concerned about Night Pilot. In short, it’s the perfect image.
Green Lanterns #42