Emerald warriors fight valiantly against their crimson-hued foes.
A hero, often viewed as a joke, embraces a promise made to a fallen friend.
Lobo kicks a space kitty.
In any other book those disparate elements might not work, but such is not the case with Injustice. Once again this book is a massive entertainment, providing great insight into its characters while telling epic stories on a grand scale.
And you can’t really get much more grand than the war between the Green and Red Lantern Corps. With hundreds of combatants on each side, the stakes have been raised so high that having Starro join the ranks of the Red Lanterns is no longer the most shocking event in this arc. I mean, it’s still up there, and on a normal day it would be the most amazing thing I’ve read all year, no question. Yet Tom Taylor one-ups himself by making Lobo a Green Lantern, proving that he should be given a power ring by showing us all the reasons that he shouldn’t.
We don’t get to see his constructs save for obscured views, but yeah, needless to say it likely wouldn’t be safe for work.
Or young children.
Or civilized readers.
Still, that’s pretty hilarious. Of course Lobo would make the most crass, lewd thing imaginable if he had a ring that could create a construct of whatever he could think up. And of course he would take said… object and whack Atrocitus in the face with it. True art knows no bounds.
Besides being genuinely funny, this issue is oftentimes moving as well. The relationship between Booster Gold and Jaime Reyes has been handled particularly well, with Booster going through a pretty believable arc. He has his own self doubts that are no doubt validated by his reputation as a goofball. After all, if the world views you as a joke, why shouldn’t you act like one? Yet he’s so wracked by grief over Ted Kord’s death that he knows he needs to be a better hero, but isn’t sure how to do it. He needs to mentor Jaime, but is he really cut out for it?
Their scenes together are brief, yet remarkably effective. You can really see Booster going through his struggles, and the optimistic yet equally clueless Jaime is there to support him. Booster may be the designated mentor, but they both have a strong influence on each other. And it’s not just the strong writing, either, as Redondo, Albarran, and Eltaeb have a feel for strong visual storytelling. The space battles are frenetic and exciting, but it’s the facial expressions that really sell what’s going on. From the barely contained laughter of the Titans upon seeing Lobo’s… imagination brought to life, to Booster’s distraction thanks to his own insecurity, the characters have true emotional depth. It’s a perfect synergy of scripting and illustrating.
That’s not the least of it, though. There’s one scene that is so unexpectedly moving that I just had to stop and stare at the aftermath for a few moments, so strong was the storytelling.
Look, Sinestro has straight up sucked throughout this whole story. It’s thanks large in part to him that Superman went so far over the edge, what with Thaal’s “wise counsel” urging Clark to commit heinous atrocities to mask his pain. It was Sinestro who encouraged Superman to use his power to effectively enslave humanity, and his smug demeanor made him pretty insufferable.
So while it is certainly satisfying seeing him finally meet his end, the manner in which he’s killed is still pretty tragic. Soranik, his own daughter, drives him through while under the influence of Starro. An accident, to be sure, but even with a relationship as strained as theirs, patricide is never easy. Sinestro manages to free Soranik from Starro’s control, and he quickly succumbs to his wounds. It’s tough to read, I won’t lie, but still satisfying to see such a despicable villain meet his end.
End then his power ring searches for a replacement, and I honestly kind of almost lost it.
The coloring on that page alone tells enough of a story, but the ring’s alert of “REPLACEMENT ALREADY ACTIVE” is just devastating. I’m going to be thinking about this one page for years to come, and that’s one of the top five visuals of this entire series without question.
As big as this story gets, it can always get bigger, and the cliffhanger for this issue proves that. It’s fun, exciting stuff that still manages to be intimate and moving, a perfect example of how great Injustice gets at its very best.
- You like Injustice.
- You want to see how Lobo would act as a Green Lantern.
- You like emotional depth along with exhilarating action.
Overall: If I were to call this “another chapter of Injustice,” don’t think that’s a slight in any way. With storytelling that is both grand and intimate, along with some of the best character work in comics right now, this series continues to be massively entertaining. It’s funny, it’s sharp, and it’s moving, with smart writing and breathtaking visuals. You might not expect it from a video tie-in comic, but I dare you to not be moved by this book.