- Writer: Geoff Johns
- Penciller: Ivan Reis
- Inkers: Oclair Albert and Joe Prado
- Colorist: Alex Sinclair
- Letterer: Nick J. Napolitano
- Cover Penciller: Ivan Reis
- Cover Inker: Oclair Albert
- Cover Colorist: Alex Sinclair
- Editor: Eddie Berganza
Standard Cover (above): Green Lantern Hal Jordan is front and centre; to the left (as we look at the cover) from top to bottom are Red Lantern Atrocitus; Agent Orange Larfleeze; and Sinestro of the Sinestro Corps. To the right again from the top down are Indigo-1 of the Indigo Tribe; Blue Lantern Saint Walker; and Carol Ferris of the Star Sapphires.
Variant Cover (on the right): This shows Nekron clutching one each of the various power rings.
Page 1 – Panel 1: The skull belongs to Bruce Wayne, the Batman. Note the bat-symbol pool of blackness it’s resting on.
Page 1 – Panel 2: Even though we’ve just named them on the Standard Cover, left to right are the main members of the seven Corps: Indigo-1; Carol Ferris; Atrocitus; Larfleeze; Saint Walker; Hal Jordan; and Sinestro. Jordan is being pursued by a black power ring as seen at the end of the previous issue.
Page 1 – Panel 3: As Jordan says, the black rings are now targeting those heroes who have been brought back from the dead, including himself.
Page 1 – Panel 4: Three black arrows are fired into Jordan’s back, disrupting his concentration and allowing the black power ring to break through his barrier.
Pages 2 and 3 – Panel 1: In the top left hand corner are Wonder Woman and Green Arrow; attacking Jordan is Superman; in the bottom left corner is Superboy. Each of these characters were killed at some point in the past, reborn and now, as of the previous issue, have become Black Lanterns. Jordan mentions dying “trying to reignite the sun.” This happened at the end of the FINAL NIGHT.
Pages 2 and 3 – Panel 2: “Ollie” is Green Arrow who, as Jordan narrates, died in a plane explosion. Jordan himself caused Green Arrow’s resurrection when Jordan was possessed by the Parallax entity.
Pages 2 and 3 – Panel 3: Wonder Woman and Superman, both of whom, like the others, have suffered death and resurrection.
Pages 2 and 3 – Panel 4: Left to right in the sky are Starfire attacking Donna Troy; Animal Man; and Fire. On the ground are Flash (the “Barry Allen” that the black power ring mentions) and Ice. Again, Donna Troy, Animal Man and Ice have all died and returned which is why Nekron is able to control them. And, like Jordan, Flash is being pursued by a power ring to draft him into the Black Lantern Corps.
Pages 2 and 3 – Panel 5: Nekron, leader of the Black Lanterns, leaves with the dead of Coast City following him. The Guardians of the Universe are held captive by the black energy that exudes from his scythe/power battery.
Page 4 – Panel 1: Atrocitus, Sinestro and Larfleeze attack the Black Lantern Superman.
Page 4 – Panel 3: Sinestro refer’s to Indigo-1’s idea that the seven lead members of the Corps could destroy the black central power battery. As seen in the previous issue, the attempt did not succeed.
Page 4 – Panel 4: The person tripping the Flash up (and there aren’t many who can do that) is the Black Lantern Impulse, the Flash’s grandson. Once again, Impulse died and returned and fell under Nekron’s power last issue.
Page 5 – Panel 1: Impulse’s line about Flash being “the first lifeline Nekron created” explains Nekron’s line from Page 5 – Panel 3 of the previous issue where he claimed Flash’s death was the “first.”
Page 5 – Panel 2: Impulse is knocked away by the Flash . . . as in the Wally West version of the Flash, Barry Allen’s nephew. The “tagalong” Barry mentions is, of course, the black power ring that’s dogging him.
Page 5 – Panel 3: Working left to right are Flash (Wally); Flash (Barry); Cyborg; Hal Jordan; Blue Lantern; Indigo-1.
Page 6 – Panels 3 and 4: Barry (dragging Jordan with him) travels fast enough to short out the black power rings’ connection.
Page 7 – Panel 2: Barry, as he explains, has travelled into the future to break the connection. The Cosmic Treadmill he mentions is an old Silver Age device he used to utilise to travel time with more accuracy. Nekron reanimated Bruce (Batman, of course) in the last issue to activate the emotional reaction Barry talks about.
Page 7 – Panel 3: Jordan asks about Batman’s Black Lantern form combusting on its own. At the end of the last issue, it was Nekron who decreed Batman’s form had served its purpose. A plot point worth remembering, perhaps?
Page 7 – Panel 4: Jordan ponders an important question: at the end of the Blackest Night do those heroes, including himself and Barry, who had died and returned, die once more?
Page 8 – Panel 1: Left to right are Mera; Jean Loring; and the Atom. In the last issue, Loring took all three of them into the black power ring belonging to Damage. During their little trip, Loring revealed the origin of Nekron (as shown in GREEN LANTERN #49’s back-up story which is dealt with in the TALES OF THE CORPS.)
Page 8 – Panel 2: Deadman – who was also seen in the GREEN LANTERN back-up story mentioned above) inhabits Loring’s body.
Page 8 – Panels 3 and 4: Deadman manages to control Loring’s body long enough to pass on a warning that every Black Lantern is headed for Earth.
Page 9 – Panels 1 to 3: Mera manages to disable Loring, leaving her adrift in the darkness.
Page 9 – Panels 4 and 5: Mera asks how many Black Lanterns there are . . .
Pages 10 and 11: . . . she had to ask! This scene ties up with the end of GREEN LANTERN #49. Front and centre is Green Lantern John Stewart who, along with the Black Lanterns behind him, are flying from the resurrected world of Xanshi. The scan to the left is numbered (click to make it readable) and starting from the top right hand corner and working anti-clockwise are: 1) Qull 2) One of the Five Inversions 3) Ke’Haan 4) Katma Tui 5) Another of the Inversions 6) Starkadr 7) Arisia 8) Airwave 9) Swamp Thing 10) Veon 11) Khufu 12) Chay-Ara 13) Roxeaume of the Five Inversions.
Arisia’s presence here as a Black Lantern is, probably, a mistake on the part of Ivan Reis.
Thanks to Andrew Dowdell of Meanwhile, At The Hall of Justice… for his help in identifying some of these.
Page 12 – Panel 2: Left to right are Wonder Woman out of whose power ring Mera and the Atom have exited. In the bottom left corner, Cyborg fights Donna Troy.
Page 12 – Panels 4 and 5: Mera, exhibiting the red glow of rage, stands off against Wonder Woman. Judging by the cover of BLACKEST NIGHT: WONDER WOMAN #2, this fight continues there.
Page 13 – Panel 1: In the top left corner, Animal Man is ensnared by Wonder Girl; in the centre of the panel, Sinestro bisects what appears to be Madame Rouge; in the top right is Jordan; and the bottom left is Barry Allen.
Page 13 – Panel 2: Left to right are an unknown Black Lantern facing off against Changeling (the green dinosaur); Atrocitus; Saint Walker; Carol Ferris; Hal Jordan; Indigo-1; Ganthet and Sayd floating above them; and Black Lantern Bolt in the corner. Together, they realise they’re going to need every member of every Corps to defeat Nekron.
Page 13 – Panels 4 to 6: Ganthet uses Jordan’s ring to duplicate it and . . .
Page 14 – Panel 1: . . . joins the Green Lantern Corps.
Page 14 – Panel 2: A hitherto unknown safeguard of the power rings: they are able to duplicate themselves and enlist others into the various Corps for twenty-four hours.
Page 15 – Panels 1 and 2: The rings duplicate and, as Ganthet said, begin searching for people to join the Corps to help out.
Page 15 – Panels 3 and 4: As Wally looks on, the Blue ring of hope enlists Barry Allen.
Page 15 – Panels 5 and 6: Larfleeze is typically reluctant to share his power with anyone!
Page 16 – Panel 2: Lex Luthor in his underground lair, hiding out from the Black Lantern versions of the victims of his Everyman Project. “Faster than a speeding bullet.” is, of course, an oft-used phrase to describe Luthor’s enemy, Superman.
Page 17 – Panel 3: As a surprise guest star, Luthor’s father Lionel appears as part of the Black Lantern horde. Just when all seems darkest, though . . .
Page 17 – Panel 4: . . . the orange power ring of avarice arrives and slips on to his finger.
Page 18 – Panel 2: The poor woman is being terrified by the Scarecrow whom we last saw in issue #4 where it was shown that he is unable to feel fear himself.
Page 19 – Panel 1: Also in issue #4, the Scarecrow came face to face with the Black Lantern version of Azrael but even that, as he says here, couldn’t scare him.
Page 19 – Panels 3 and 4: The yellow ring of the Sinestro Corps inducts Scarecrow. He was previously offered a yellow ring (in GREEN LANTERN #27 in case you’re wondering) but was prevented from taking it by Hal Jordan and John Stewart.
Page 20 – Panel 1: Left to right are an unknown Black Lantern; Bolt; the Atom; presumably one of the dead of Coast City; Black Canary; and Green Arrow.
Page 20 – Panels 2 and 3: Before he can go any further, the Atom is recruited into the Indigo Tribe.
Page 20 – Panel 4: As Wonder Woman and Mera fight, a Star Sapphire ring seeks out Wonder Woman while a red ring finds Mera who, as we saw earlier, is overcome with rage.
Page 20 – Panel 5: And with that, Mera becomes a Red Lantern.
Page 20 – Panel 6: The Sapphire ring, of course, has to contend with the fact that Wonder Woman is already a Black Lantern.
Page 21 – Panels 3 to 5: Despite the resistance of the black ring, the Star Sapphire wins out and Wonder Woman joins them.
Pages 22 and 23: And the Deputy Corps assemble! Left to right are Mera; Lex Luthor; Barry Allen; Wonder Woman; the Atom; and Scarecrow.
Page 24: More words from the Book of The Black.