Absolutely action-packed with its depictions of Hal Jordan’s draining mental battle with Hector Hammond, Guy Gardner’s savage fisticuffs session with Arkillo and Kyle Rayner’s desperate escape from New Genesis, Robert Venditti’s script for Issue Forty Seven of “Hal Jordan And The Green Lantern Corps” demonstrates just why the imminent departure of the title’s longtime writer made such headlines when he first announced he was “about to exit his five-year run on the franchise”. Indeed, having penned a staggering ninety-seven editions focusing upon “the adventures of [the] outer space super-cop” it was probably hard for this comic’s 27,825 readers in June 2018 to imagine anyone else helming the “cosmic crusade”, especially when the Hollywood-raised writer’s “Corps Values” contains such a powerful message as to just why the former fighter pilot gained his power ring from the dying alien Abin Sur in the first place; “You just proved that you’d never do these things. You wouldn’t even let me do them. Your actions are what make you a Hero.”
Despite containing no actual physical altercation between the two combatants, this battle of wills between the titular character and “the God Brain” is arguably the publication’s highlight, focusing far more upon the Justice Leaguer’s inspirational ability to overpower his opponent’s truly formidable mind through sheer perseverance and an intuition as to what is just or wrong, rather than simply utilising a plethora of innovative light constructs. Devoid of his past knowledge, or even a basic understanding as to his personal identity, Jordan still heroically battles against Hammond’s tempting offer “to kill every villain in the universe” just because “that doesn’t sound right.”
Naturally however, any publication featuring the ever-aggressive Gardner is almost certainly going to contain an element of violence, and on this occasion Venditti manages his audience’s expectations ‘in spades’ by having the former Baltimore Police Officer batter a ringless Arkillo to within an inch of the Yellow Lantern’s life in a last-ditch effort for Gil Kane’s co-creation to free himself from the machinations of his recently donned Darkstar mantle. As with Hal’s aforementioned triumph over adversity, this pulse-pounding passage provides something of an emotional journey for both the participants and any perusing bibliophiles, courtesy of a truly emotional Guy tapping into the rage he felt towards his alcoholic “pop” for regularly beating him as a child, and artist Fernando Pasarin pencilling a series of awesome-looking, sense-shattering fight scenes.