Release Date: May 16, 2012
Cover Date: July 2012
Story: Tony Bedard
Art: Márcio Takara
Cover: Paul Renaud
Jaime Reyes’ armor reacts violently to the presence of three different Lanterns, and tries to knock out Bleez with a cryogenic blast. As expected, this only pisses her off even further, but a sniper shoots Kyle Rayner with an energy draining pulse in the confusion. Jaime manages to save Kyle from hitting the ground, but Bleez traps the Blue Beetle in an awkward position. Glomulus is taken out by the sniper next, who reveals himself as a bounty hunter hired by the Guardians to collect Kyle. While Bleez squares off against the villain, Jaime retrieves Kyle’s power battery, and the newly-recharged Green Lantern quickly ends the fight. When Kyle tries to learn more about Jaime’s armor, he discovers that the Reach are attacking Odym! Kyle and Bleez take off, and Jaime is left alone once more.
Blue Beetle (Vol. 3) #9 is a perfectly example of a crossover issue done right; both the series protagonist and his guest stars got equal screen time, and the story within benefited all parties involved. Since Tony Bedard is writing both Blue Beetle and Green Lantern: New Guardians, it made for an even more seamless transition. Even if a Blue Beetle reader didn’t care about the Lantern parts, there were still other subplots involved that will impact Jaime more than the ringslingers.
Much of this issue was a fight sequence, and a fun one to read at that. It was absolutely hilarious that Jaime popped a boner while being straddled by Bleez. The Red Lantern was about to gut him like a fish, but Jaime’s still a typical teenager. It was even funnier when Bleez found out; not only was she disgusted, but Jaime even had to cover up! Comedy gold.
This issue also confirms that the murder of Kyle’s girlfriend is still canon within the new DC Universe; the panel with Kyle’s flashback is a clear homage to the original scene from Green Lantern (Vol. 3) #54.
from Green Lantern (Vol. 3) #54, art by Darryl Banks and Romeo Tanghal
from Blue Beetle (Vol. 3) #9, art by Márcio Takara
We can assume it’s still Alexandra DeWitt and that Major Force was her killer unless it’s revealed to be otherwise. While the Green Lantern titles seemed untouched by the ramifications of Flashpoint, it’s clear that most events, even recent ones, could not have happened the way they originally did, if at all. That said, it’s good to see that one of Kyle’s defining moments is still intact.
That flashback panel was also the first confirmation that Kyle’s original custom Green Lantern costume is still canon, as well! It’s hard to tell from that tiny image, but the crab mask and gauntlets are clearly visible. For many Kyle fans, myself included, it remains their favorite. (The shoulder color seems a bit off, but I think that’s just a coloring error, as all of the lines are in the same place if you look at the original panel.)
Márcio Takara’s art was competent enough; some of the figure drawing looked a bit off, but it didn’t ruin the story. The bounty hunter was appropriately menacing, and Takara added the required Bleez ass shot in one panel. My biggest gripe was Kyle’s power battery was drawn completely wrong; it doesn’t look anything like that, and it never did.
Tune in later this week as the tale continues in Green Lantern: New Guardians #9!