"Lights Out" Fades to a Soft Close in Green Lantern Annual 2 | Fanboys Anonymous

"Lights Out" Fades to a Soft Close in Green Lantern Annual 2

Posted by Unknown Friday, November 1, 2013
Lights Out began with a colorful bang. Between the destruction of the Central Power Battery and the subsequent destruction of Oa—events that coincided with a rapidly diminishing source of green light, mind you—it seemed clear that this line-wide event would change the Green Lantern universe forever. Geoff Johns’ legendary run with the character set a special standard with similar in-universe events. Johns made the Green Lantern universe a place of consequences, with each event changing the universe in a clear and profound way—a rare commodity in modern comics. Sadly, the final instillation of Lights Out doesn't aspire to such heights and ends the arc with a whimper.

Cover for the finale of the Lights Out Green Lantern line cross over event

The grand finale kicks off on Ysmault after Hal strikes a deal with Guy to ensure the help of the “magic-infused” Red Lanterns. Just as the gang decides to get things in gear, the story is immediately burdened with what can at best be called a setup for future issues, and at worst a twist more fitting for Dawson’s Creek or a new ABC Family original drama. The Star Sapphires possess the ability to find whomever it is they love, no matter where they are. After inferring that Kyle is with Relic, Carol Ferris, the resident Star Sapphire and longtime love interest of Hal Jordan, confesses that she can find Rayner with that special “tether” ability, thus confessing her love for him. I don’t know how to discuss the twist nicely. It came completely out of left field and seems to be there just for the sake of drama. Furthermore, it contributes to the rushed style of this story. This is the climactic issue of a universe-wide event, and character revelations are occurring that feel like they should be in the heart of the second act. Unfortunately, Carol’s heartstrings are truly invested in Kyle and she quickly pulls the team into space before much can be done with the plot element.

Carol Ferris confesses love for Kyle Rayner in the Green Lantern Lights Out ConclusionOut at the edge of the cosmos, Relic is attempting to break through the wall that contains the known universe with the aid of White Lantern Kyle Rayner. After this attempt fails, Relic decides to up the ante and sets his machines on Kyle's white light. This is another odd scene as Relic justifies the betrayal with a need for more power to crack the wall. There are five corps he didn’t even attempt to go after. It's been made clear that he's more than capable of collecting the power with no real difficulty. I suppose it could be said he’s in a hurry, but it really didn’t seem like it took him long to eradicate the Blue Lanterns and Oa. As such, he resorts to blows just as Hal and what's left of the GLC arrive with the Red Lanterns in tow.

While the final confrontation gets underway, we jump to the Indigo home world where John Stewart and the rookie GLs fled following the destruction of Oa. Here, John enlists the aid of the Indigo leader in a construction plan.

Back at the battle, Hal’s Red Lantern theory—that they're effective against Relic due to a form of magic infused in their powers—proves to be hot air as Relic manages to deflect all their attacks with a familiar ease. The one sign of merit is that the Reds are able to blast Relic’s ship into the wall of the universe, thus fusing the ship with it. This seemed a bit easy, as the GLC wasn’t able to dent the ship as it decimated their home planet, but that may be due to the magic factor—although this is never really addressed.

New 52 White Lantern Kyle Rayner sacrifices himself in Lights Out part five.After a quick strategy change, the team uses the Indigo’s teleportation powers to jump inside Relic’s reflectors, which float feet away from him, and give him a good ol’ fashioned knuckle sandwich in an effort to knock him, too, into the wall. A flurry of blows later and Relic is down, but still not out. Although the punches seemed to be working, White Lantern Kyle decides to play the hero card and flies straight into Relic, pushing the two into the wall together. Relic struggles to emerge, exclaiming that White Lantern Kyle has refilled the reserve of light for the universe, thus ending Relic's struggle as the wall finally claims him. The Indigo Lanterns then jump the GLC to their new home world, a freshly refurbished Mogo, complete with a brand new central power battery built by the Indigo leader under John's orders. Upon checking in, however, we discover that some lanterns don’t feel right about recharging their batteries now knowing the light supply is finite.

Across the universe, White Lantern Kyle emerges from the wall, telling the Guardians that the entities sacrificed themselves to replenish the reserves, in response to which they ominously decide, “It is time for his journey to truly begin.”

The final scoreboard shows the GLC with a new home world, a new central power battery, and a new ethical dilemma in regards to the legitimacy of using an expendable amount of green light. While the final bit should make for an interesting conflict moving forward, there wasn’t a lot of fallout to separate this event from a simple story arc. I’m not saying it was bad; I just don’t see it as worth expending an entire month's worth of the Green Lantern universe's page space. Everything just came back to a close semblance of what it was before, all nice and tidy with a big bow on top. The only other real dilemma moving forward is Hal’s newfound drama with Carol, although it's hard to have a love triangle when everyone thinks one side of it is dead.

As Rob Venditti's first big arc, it's hard to know what will come next. Do you think Relic is over and done with, or is this the beginning of something much larger? Let us know what you think in the comments section below, and thanks for following the Lights Out event with us.

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