"Annihilation" Vs. "Sinestro Corps"
"Annihilation Conquest: Prologue" & "Sinestro Corps" pretty much set out to do the same thing: establish the framework of a comic book sci-fi epic and get readers to buy all the tie-ins and spin-offs. The level to which both have succeeded in said mission is the focus of this review.
The books take distinctly different approaches to storytelling. "Annihilation" is a classic science-fiction narrative, with careful world-building and development of political intrigue. "Sinestro Corps" is an unabashed love-fest of both the Green Lantern mythos and the pencil-shavings from the recent "Infinite Crisis." Which approach one prefers depends a lot on the fan.
Basically, if you are not familiar with the Green Lantern Corps, you may find this book a little confusing. The book is fun and full of those exaggerated moments of four-color sturm und drang (my new $10 phrase) that have made "World War Hulk" such a hit. But it also assumes a lot.
"Sinestro Corps" assumes you know all about Hal's troubles, that you know who Parallax is, that you know who "evil Superboy" and "evil Superman robot" are, that you know and care that Kyle's ma was sick, and that you know that the big guy on the last page of the book (the "big reveal") is not Chemo, as I assumed, or the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man or whomever.
On the other hand, I approached "Annihilation Conquest" with zed knowledge of the previous "Annihilation" series or the characters. I mean, at least I knew who Hal Jordan was -- who the hell is this Quill guy?
But "Annihilation Conquest" walks you through its universe as if every reader was new, as if every reader was as damn clueless as I was. And the result is that by the last page I was on-board to buy most (not all) of the "Annihilation" tie-in books. To actually get me to show any interest in purchasing "Star Lord" -- freakin' STAR LORD! That takes a lot.
I don't think you can get two more different writers than "Sinestro's" Geoff Johns and "Annihilation's" Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning. Johns is writing for the fans, for all those who followed "Infinite Crisis" & "52." Abnett & Lanning are writing classic sci-fi stuff; as they did with "Legion," they carefully build their worlds.
In the end, I chose to follow "Annihilation" through and to assume a wait-and-see stance on future "Green Lantern" books. But if you are specifically a DC fan, I could see how "Sinestro" could get you pumped; it out-Countdowns "Countdown."
As an aside, there is a really strong central female character in "Annihilation" and "Sinestro" is more or less a boy's club until (I assume) crazy mating Star Sapphire flies on the scene. Though I'm expecting a psychedelic girlfriend-in-refrigerator flashback to torment Kyle.