How John Stewart Changed the Sinestro Corps.

This article contains a series of major spoilers for Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #25, on sale now.

The alliance between the Green Lanterns and the Sinestro Corps shattered in spectacular fashion in this week’s Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #25 by Robert Vendetti and Ethan Van Sciver, not only undoing John Stewart’s hard-won partnership between the forces of fear and will but also setting in motion events that may make relations between the rival ringbearers worse than ever.

Ironically, nearly everything that happens this issue is the good guys’ fault.

Murder Was the Case

There are two major inciting incidents leading to the diplomatic breakdown, each taking place some time ago but only coming to light in the last few issues. Working chronologically, there’s the case of Tomar-Tu. In the first days of the alliance, when Green and Yellow Lanterns paired up to track down the remnants of Sinestro’s forces, Tomar and his partner Fantas-M succeeded in locating the infanticide Romat-Ru. Despite his crimes, the Xudarian murderer was offered the same choice as the rest of the Sinestro Corps: reform, or prison. But when Romat-Ru surrendered, fellow Xudarian Tomar executed him instead. He hid his crime for months, but when Stewart discovered the truth, the Lantern leader stripped Tomar-Tu of his ring and announced to the universe that the ex-Corpsman would face trial. After all, if the Green Lanterns are to enforce the law, they must also be subject to the law.

This, predictably, did not go over well with the yellows.

Of course, the partnership might still have survived this blow, if not for the even bigger storm on the horizon.

Say My Name, Say My Name

As seen last issue, Sinestro Corps leader Soranik Natu has discovered the truth about the time-traveling villain Sarko – that he was her son with Green Lantern Kyle Rayner, a fact Kyle had concealed from Soranik. This was always going to blow up in Kyle’s face, but to make matters worse, Sora discovers the truth while performing Sarko’s autopsy, so an already terrible secret is revealed in horrifying fashion. Sora expressed her displeasure in Hal Jordan #24 by burning a Sinestro Corps emblem into Kyle’s chest.

When Guy Gardner approaches the assembled dual Corps carrying the wounded Rayner, Yellow Lantern Arkillo is ready to side with the Greens. But when Sora confesses to the deed and gives an (abridged) accounting of her actions – that she struck in revenge for the Green Lanterns concealing the existence and the death of Sinestro’s heir – and dissolving the alliance, most of the masters of fear sort back into her column.

To recap: this all could have been avoided if a.) Tomar had kept his oath and b.) Kyle had shared the tragic truth. It’s the Greens’ fault.

There’s more! Following a speech in which Soranik laments that Stewart’s Corps “welcome us on their world … [in] a scheme to make us feel equal, when they will never view us as such,” the Yellow leader announces that henceforth she will adopt her father’s surname and be known as Soranik Sinestro.

The two Corps do battle, but Stewart brings the conflict to an abrupt end by executing his failsafe, Program Katma – injecting via the newly-constructed Central Battery a “Green impurity” into the Sinestro Corps’ rings to make them powerless against will, in a reversal of the traditional GL weakness.

“You know what pisses me off the most?” John asks. “You’re all surprised I had a plan.”

Yes, John, that was quite a good strategy, actually. It also utterly proves Soranik’s point, but, oh well.

Where Do We Go From Here?

When the dust settles, the newly-anointed Soranik Sinestro evacuates her Corps from the sentient planet Mogo, and within days the yellow battery is torn down. The handful of Sinestro Corps defectors, including Space Ape, Fantas-M, and others, take the Green Lantern oath and join a new corps.

Hal Jordan pleads on Tomar-Re’s behalf to allow the disgraced Lantern’s ring to choose a new bearer from among the Xudarian people, and the ring selects Somar-Le, an orphan of Starro’s attack on her planet and the narrator of the future-set issue #13 of this series.

Oh, and while Soranik vows to carry on the Sinestro family legacy, it appears Papa Thal Sinestro is very much still alive.

Despite the dissolution of a promising partnership, despite the Lanterns’ grievous losses, John Stewart takes solace in the fact that “the Corps endures.” There is also a sense, certainly, that there is greater understanding between the rival forces – Guy and Arkillo, facing each other in battle, both refuse to strike the first blow – though John may be overly optimistic that “the long war between green and yellow – will and fear – is finally over.” Because even if the Sinestro Corps under Soranik devotes itself to “order” instead of overt evil, the Yellows’ vision of order is almost certain to come into conflict with the Greens’ view of justice. This is a new beginning, sure, but what the new era entails is a mystery.

Whatever happens next, just remember: blame the Green Lanterns.

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