Overview

The Green Hornet #5

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The Green Hornet #5

Credits

  • Words: Kevin Smith
  • Art: Jonathan Lau
  • Colors: Ivan Nunes
  • Story Title: Crash Course
  • Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
  • Price: $3.99
  • Release Date: Jun 23, 2010

Dynamite's Green Hornet re-launch five months ago was filled with nothing but nerdy potential. Media geeks around the world got a little excited because we were finally going to get to see wheat Kevin Smith had been working on all those years ago when he was working on a Green Hornet film. After the success of Buffy Season Eight, G.I. Joe: Cobra and the general upswing in quality with licensed properties, there was real hope with this story delivering on many levels.

Five issues in and it's starting to seem that this story is being hindered and possibly protracted by the project's format. Adapted from Smith's abandoned screenplay and segmented into the series' first ten issues, this particular story is now halfway through and we hardly seem to be into the second act. Our hero has only just taken his mantle as the heir to the Hornet, with a minimal degree of success.

The end of issue four held promise with his crashing through the skylight in full costume, but little actually progressed from there. The majority of the issue consisted of a ten minute long, inconsequential fight. What's making this endeavor oddly frustrating is that there's more good than bad, it just seems to be treading water. Sure, we got to see the big bad guy revealed, but it’s nothing you may not have seen coming.

If there were just things to gripe about, then this would be an easier article to write. You can't help but like old Kato, Britt Jr., and the legend of the Green Hornet that's been set up. In the same token, you can't help but be dragged out of the story with pop culture references like the lyrics to Rob Zombie's “Dragula” being transcribed in the panel corners of the club scene. It dates the material in a way that's less distracting in a film. Sure, that would've been a good song to cut the scene to, but here, it's a detail that mires the proceedings.

Jonathan Lau's pencils are reliable as usual and his depiction of action is usually pretty fluid. There were a few panels that required a second glance this time around, but nothing glaring enough to tarnish his work as a whole. I fear the worst, and hope that his art isn't suffering from the lack of steam in the story. Thankfully, though, the majority of the omniscient text boxes are missing this time around and Lau is given the opportunity to convey more acting in his pencils.

This is a major turning point for the series, story wise as well as readership wise. Now that all the pieces are finally in place, there needs to be some upward motion within the plot. We've accepted the premise, spent time in Britt's regular world, and watched him accept his calling. Enough with the formalities and take this story to the next level. We're ready for a little training, a Black and Green Hornet battle. We need something to satisfy the tale thus far because at this point, it’s been coasting on charm. I hold out hope for this series to come together in its back stretch, but remain pessimistic of it fully capturing the fun and whimsical nature of the first two issues. Plot details can still be heavy and foreboding, but when you're dealing with a green fedora wearing fake gangster, a little brevity goes a long way.

I would wholeheartedly love to be proven incorrect in my apprehension, because nothing is better than a fun story. Even though Britt, Sr. died too soon, there’s still time to finish strong and give us one nice collection. I guess time will tell.

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Comments

  • Eric Lindberg

    Eric Lindberg Jun 24, 2010 at 6:44pm

    I haven't been overly impressed by Smith's Green Hornet and I do agree that it has pacing issues. That said, I just saw the trailer for the Seth Rogen Green Hornet movie. Yeesh. Smith's version is looking better by the minute.

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