Kyle Rayner has finally become the focus of a title again with the creation of Green Lantern: New Guardians. Tony Bedard and Tyler Kirkham are already familiar with the character, having worked together on the previous incarnation of Green Lantern Corps. Together the creative team gives us another look at Rayner’s origin and lay down the framework for an interesting storyline.
Bedard brings us back to the beginning for Rayner and we get to relive Ganthet inducting him into the Corps as well as see Rayner in his artistic roots. Bedard has shown Rayner’s artistic side with the never-ending variety of constructs at his disposal and shows us Rayner’s first construct which is by far my favorite, a chibi version of Ganthet. Rayner has been one of the most overlooked Lanterns but throughout the Green Lantern Corps series and this one, Bedard seems to be trying to raise him up to the same level as Hal Jordan. This actually leads to one of the most amusing scenes from the new 52, where a child in the street tells him he’s not Green Lantern because the real Green Lantern has brown hair.
In addition to seeing Kyle Rayner’s beginnings, we also meet other Lanterns from across the spectrum. Rayner is clearly the focus but Bedard uses short introductions to establish some of the story elements that we can expect from this series. By infusing this new title with familiar elements from the recent additions to the Green Lantern mythos and adding elements of humor, Bedard is adding another unique Green Lantern book to an already impressive roster.
Kirkham keeps up the high quality of art he was known for with Green Lantern Corps and brings it full force to New Guardians. His artwork is very clean and showcases the characters expressions throughout the book. The pride Ganthet feels for Rayner is clearly shown through Kirkham’s art throughout the first few pages. Kirkham also does an amazing jobs with the constructs for the members of the Lantern Corps. From the snake-like constructs of the Sinestro Corp member to the constructs Rayner uses to save pedestrians, you can see that Kirkham puts in every detail he can to illustrate the attention to detail these characters bring through their rings.
The concept for New Guardians is enthralling and Bedard and Kirkham continue to show why they’re the ones to go to for space drama. Hopefully we will see more lanterns in the next issue, Larfleeze needs to show up and claim everything is his already, but the creative team leaves us wanting more in just the right way.
WRITING: 4 / ART: 4 / OVERALL: 4