Bam! So we're almost out of the woods with the 'Brightest Day' storyline.
See what I did there?
Anyways! A quick issue recap: OMG! Ollie, Gallahad, Doc Mid-Nite, Mr. Terrific, Jason Blood, Etrigan, a horde of evil wood monsters, and a heavy handed metephore for how Ollie is his own worst enemy throw down in Sherwoop Park! There's fire and magic and swords and arrows, and Mr. Terrific's hands are probably sacks for shattered phalanges from punching monsters made out of oak.
During the melee, Ollie ruminates on the idea that the forest contains evil as well as good, that it's enhancing Etrigan's power, and that Gallahad is the Chosen One. What exactly for it's not entirely clear. Maybe to keep the forest good and pure? It's not really important.Gallahad claims his new magic sword is draining the longer the fight goes on, but I suspect the real issue is that the dude's a former mental patient, and hasn't really been doing the endurance work needed to swing a bit of sharp metal at pissed off wooden golems for any real lenth of time. Chopping firewood is draining enough when it's not trying to punch you in the gob.
The battle rages on until Etrigan decides he's had enough; he bushwacks Gallahad and starts to dry hump the white lantern tree. I would not have suspected the Demon to be a dendrophiliac, but it's in the book kiddies.
Presumably what happens next is in Ollie's head. He sees a vision of friends and family entangled by the forest. I think because it's spreading and the fear is that it will go on to envelope the entire planet? Or at least all of the important parts, i.e. the United States. Anyways! One panel shows Black Canary, Arsenal, Mia and what I assume is the most white-washed Connor Hawke yet. Dude's white, blond, wearing a red shirt; it looks more like some random dude than it does Connor, but that wouldn't make sense. Roy looks perturbed that he's missing his cat-chucks. The next panel shows Superman, Green Lantern and Wonder Woman fighting the forest, and there doing only a little bit better. Batman is, of course, enacting one of his many world taken over by an evil magic forest contingency plans.
Ollie, inspired by this vision lunges for Gallahad's fallen sword, which turns into a super-glowy bow that fires arrows of white lantern energy. Using the bow is difficult, akin to the time Ollie the spare green lantern ring that Hal gave him. I remember that issue, and the reason Ollie had such trouble with the willpower powered ring is that his will was "cynical." Which is ridiculous, but whatevs. The white lantern energy is powered by life, yeah? Is Ollie's life also cynical? I don't get it. Also the sword/bow restores Ollie's clothing.
Ollie yells "Get off my tree," at Etrigan -- that may or may not be an exact quote -- and starts shooting arrows at him. The Demon, all tuckered out from his tree molestations, doesn't even have the energy to think up a decent rhyme. Instead he summons the forest to enwrap him, turning Etrigan into a giant World of Warcraft tree monster.
Ollie decides to make his last stand to save the forest and fills Etrigan full of holes. We're running out of pages though, so that's mostly off panel.
Finally Etrigan goes down, and the white lantern tree speaks with Ollie, verbally patting him on the back for a fine job of heroing and then the enitre forest is encompased in a dome of white light. Well, not really a dome, because it's a star shape.... More of a jelly mold of white light, I guess.
I enjoyed this issue, though it felt a bit cluttered. My esteem for Diogenes Neves work is really begining to wane. All the big fight scenes were a bit of a mess.
Fortunetly Jason Blood, Mr. Terrific and Doctor Mid-Nite don't show up after page two, or else everything would be really cluttered. Though that begs the question of what their relevance to the story is. Doc and Mr. T have contributed nothing, and considering that Etrigan got a make over quick as can be, really, it could have been any sort of demon in that role, making Jason Blood somewhat superfluous as well.
My real problem is why is Ollie so obsessed with protecting the forest? And from what? Itself? He determined that the forest has evil as well as good, and that it is what shot him in the head with an arrow way back in issue 2. How does that translate into it needing a protector, regardless of whether it's Gallahad or Ollie himself? Maybe I'm missing something.
Anyways, it was good despite my griping, but I'm eager for this storyline to be done with.