By Cat Wyatt
This was an interesting issue, to say the least. We start off with both Hal and Kyle awfully beat and bloody, trapped in a jail cell on Planet Jekuul, now home to Zod (and his family, of course). Kyle appears to be worse off than Hal, though that could also have something to do with Hal’s physiology for all we know.
The important thing to note about the two Green Lanterns being imprisoned – their rings are missing. It would appear that Zod baited them there intentionally to gain the rings, not the people. Which sort of makes sense? I’m sure in that case he would have preferred that any other two Green Lanterns showed up, as they likely would have been easier to take down. I don’t know what Zod could want with the rings, but it certainly can’t be good.
Eradicator has been put in charge of analyzing the rings, as well as blocking out any distress signals they may be sending out (and trust me, those things must be firing off a signal a second, at minimum). I’m sure there’s a very good reason Eradicator, in particular, has been put in charge of this job, but I don’t know it yet.
In a surprising move on Zod’s part, he invites Hal to dinner with him and his family (does he not care for Kyle, or is he aware that Kyle is too injured to be moved?). Supposedly he regrets the injuries the two of them received, especially Kyle, as his wife ‘has a temper.’ That’s not quite the term I’d use, but sure, we’ll go with that.
The conversation led me to learn a lot of interesting things, which may or may not have already been known (I’m ashamed to say I’m not completely up to date on the older series). I learned that there was a Green Lantern assigned to the sector in which Krypton resided in, which makes sense when I stop to think about it. It just never occurred to me before. I even know the Green Lantern that was assigned to the duty; the late Tomar-Re.
Now at least some things are starting to make sense to me. Such as why Zod would be bothering with the Green Lanterns the way he is. His wife completely blames them for failing to protect Krypton, while Zod himself is a bit more conflicted on the matter. He believes they failed, but he is also rational enough to understand that without their failure he never would have been exposed to Earth’s yellow sun. I suppose the real question is does the end justify the means? (However unintentional those means were).
Regardless of Zod’s feelings about the Green Lanterns, the fact remains that he underestimated them. Well, specifically he underestimated Hal. Hal and his ring are not a typical pairing, not is his ring normal (by Green Lantern standards that is). Where most Lanterns would be incapable of getting their ring back in this situation, Hal’s unique connection to his allows him to break that rule.
Having his ring back is fantastic, of course, but it doesn’t change some very important facts. Fact one; Kyle is very badly injured, and won’t be able to assist in the escape or in any fighting that may occur. Fact two; the people here consider Zod to be a god; they’re not the slaves he pictured them to be (though I would still make an argument for it). Fact three; his ring won’t translate the language they speak, so he cannot talk them into believing otherwise. Not exactly a great combination.
Despite the limitation on options, Hal does still have some choices he can make. I’m sure Kyle will kick his ass for the choice he made; next time they see each other (I refuse to believe that they’ll never see each other again). Though his decision was really unexpected, it was actually pretty brilliant. I can’t wait to see what happens next.
This was a pretty solid issue, especially the ending. I was sitting there, utterly captivated and fascinated to see what was going to happen (and more importantly, why). I didn’t really understand the crossover until this issue, but once a few details got laid out for me, I suddenly got it. I still don’t know what Zod is planning, or why, but I’m okay with that. I don’t like predictable plots anyway.
The artwork was great for this issue; I couldn’t help but wince every time I saw Kyle’s injuries. They did a good job of making them look terrible, but not graphic (a tough balance when dealing with superheroes). I particularly loved the last panel with Kyle. I won’t lie, I absolutely scoured that image for any additional details I could get out of it.
Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #38