Since his “discovery” by writer Geoff Johns, the former Green Lantern villain Sinestro has become one of the most complex non-Batman villains in the New 52.
Now Writer Cullen Bunn and artist Dale Eaglesham are preparing to chronicle the continuing adventures of the character come April in an ongoing DC comic.
To get to the bottom of this new addition to the GL franchise, Cosmic Book News Managing Editor Byron Brewer spoke exclusively on a ring-to-ring connection to the scribe and filed this report.
Cosmic Book News: Sinestro is a multilayered character mostly due to the writing of Geoff Johns. How does it feel to be adding to the destiny of this great DC character?
Cullen Bunn: It’s exciting and scary! Sinestro has such an awesome presence and a lot of fans. I want to do something that will honor the character and advance his story in some exciting ways. I’m really thrilled about this story, because we’re going to be exploring some new angles of Sinestro as well as the Yellow Lanterns as a whole.
CBN: Cullen, how did you become involved with this new Lantern book?
Cullen Bunn: I worked with editor Matt Idelson on a four-issue run of Superman/Batman a couple of years ago. We talked about doing something else together, but the timing didn’t work out. A few months ago, when my schedule would allow it, I reached out to Matt and this was one of the first ideas he mentioned to me. I love writing about morally ambiguous characters, and I’ve always wanted to work on a cosmic story, so it seemed like a perfect fit!
CBN: Tell us about the character of this former Green Lantern as you see it right now as the book begins.
Cullen Bunn: As the book begins, Sinestro is in self-imposed exile. He feels that his dedication as a ring-wielder has cost him everything—the woman he loved, his daughter, his people—and he just wants to be left alone. That, of course, isn’t going to happen, though. Lyssa Drak seeks him out, bringing with her a bit of news that he can’t resist—there are still Korugarians in the universe, and they need his help.
CBN: Guess the lost Korugarians will start popping up like the supposedly rare Kryptonians, eh? (laughs) So, is the Bunn Sinestro a villain, an antihero, or something in between?
Cullen Bunn: Sinestro’s beyond the hero/villain paradigm. He has done what needed to be done, period. Morality didn’t play into it. He wants to redeem the Yellow Lanterns. He wants to save his people. He wants to build a connection to his daughter. The problem is, Sinestro is so proud that he can’t see how he’s caused (and continues to cause) some of these problems. His own pride may very well lead to his downfall.
CBN: What role does Lyssa Drak play in this new book?
Cullen Bunn: Lyssa becomes Sinestro’s closest advisor. As we’ve seen previously, she’s branded herself with the words of the Book of Parallax. This has some unexpected consequences for Lyssa, and it will be interesting to see how it all plays out.
Cullen Bunn: Sinestro will try to repair his relationship with the Sinestro Corps, but it won’t always be easy. Many of the Yellow Lanterns feel betrayed by Sinestro. They feel as though he only seeks them out when it please his whim. What’s more, Sinestro wants the Yellow Lanterns to strive for a goal that a good portion of their number will not agree with. Sinestro, on the other hand, feels that the Yellow Lanterns have gotten sloppy in terms of their recruiting procedures. He feels it’s time to thin the herd a bit.
As you might guess, it will be a struggle to keep the Lanterns from planting a knife in his back.
CBN: I was going to ask about the first "big bad," but I guess I should say who is Sinestro's first "opponent"?
Cullen Bunn: Sinestro will quickly find himself at odds with the Yellow Lanterns, but his quest to rescue Korugarians will soon bring him into conflict with a dangerous group called the Paling, which will be a challenge for him for some time to come.
CBN: Any particular section of Green Lantern books you're looking at for your characterization of Sinestro?
Cullen Bunn: For Sinestro’s characterization, the best resource is the great work Geoff Johns did with the character. That’s the Sinestro readers love, so that was the starting point here.
CBN: Are you a fan of Dale Eaglesham's art?
Cullen Bunn: Lord, yes! I was so excited to hear that Dale was going to be working on this book! He’s an artist who can really go crazy on big ideas, and he brings his own ideas to the table as well. He’s really bringing a kind of “epicness” to the visuals here. Readers are going to freak out when they see this stuff!