Could we finally get some forward progress in story? Is it too little too late or is there a silver lining here?
Red Lanterns #5
Krona is missing. Atrocitus is pissed. He first blames Bleez and after knocking her around like a battered housewife, he orders her to go get the three Red Lanterns out of the blood pool. As Bleez does her leader’s bidding, Atrocitus finds small footprints that look to be left by a shambling body. He gathers his Red Lanterns together to go on the hunt of his missing prize. On Earth, John Moore is left nothing more than a helpless witness as his brother is dragged away by the police. When his brother makes a move to break free, John watches the cops brutally beat him to death. Finally consumed by the rage he’s kept inside for years, a red ring finds John and turns him into the first human Red Lantern.
There might be something good coming out of this series. I’ve complained that the last three issues had too much formula in how it works. Atrocitus talking to Krona. Atrocitus’ inner monologing. Atrocitus remembering or acting out on some grave injustice in the galaxy. Atrocitus studying Bleez and her interaction with the other Red Lanterns. Toss in some of the brothers on Earth dealing with their anger over a thug killing their grandfather and you’re done. This starts to deviate from that and actually seems to get somewhere. Krona is missing and it looks like the whole of the Red Lantern Corps finally has something to do. John Moore has become the first human Red Lantern and it looks as though the next couple issues will focus on that a bit more. But there’s something else I found really pretty cool in this issue…
I joked in my breakdown of the issue that Atrocitus treats Bleez like a battered housewife. That isn’t so much funny as it is kinda true. His rage filled heart and insane jealousy makes her a quick target when he realizes that she might be too smart for his own good. He’s quick to slap her around, but even if she is as wicked and as smart as she’s been made out to be, she still obeys him as a follower. It doesn’t seem as though she’s actually got any ill intent. So, that made me think about something else about their relationship. Could Atrocitus actually be harboring different feelings for Bleez and vice versa?
Their relationship is evolving into what seems more like the classic schoolyard crush. The boy immaturely picks on the girl to show he actually respects and likes her. Atrocitus kicks up a few notches, but think about this… Red Lanterns are almost childlike in brain capacity because their emotions rule them. Atrocitus also had a creepy crush on Mera during Blackest Night, and, while that might have been part of the now discarded old DCU, he showed that he isn’t just all about hate and rage. This new angle on these two hate mongering characters kinda grabbed me and has me very interested to see how well they coexist despite this current relationship they’ve share.
Ed Benes and Diego Bernard are certainly serviceable artists and while I’ve been waiting for Peter Milligan to ramp up the interest level in this series, Benes, in particular, has delivered. They definitely make Bleez an attractive character for being a blood barfing bat lady.
I’m actually looking forward to the next few issues because I’m finally getting what I’ve felt this series has needed from the get-go… An actual plot that is moving toward some goal or event. It seems that either someone has stolen Krona or he actually is alive and if so, that definitely gives a great deal of purpose to the book and the Red Lantern Corps itself.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Art has been solid, but finally the story is starting to pick up steam. Decent backgrounds on the new RLs who got their brains back.||Still dragging a bit, but hopefully this is now mostly in the past.|
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