I was looking forward to watching the Green Lantern movie, which actually slipped from my radar after seeing the reviews, so I picked up Geoff Johns’ retelling of the origin story a couple months back. I love me some origin stories, and I’d heard that Johns was DC’s golden child after his runs on The Flash and the Green Lantern Blackest Night/Brightest Day event, so I was curious to read something from him.
I knew next to nothing about Green Lantern. I knew he’s a dude with a ring that can construct anything he can imagine, which from what I remember of the few comics and cartoons I saw usually resulted in a big green fist for punching, and over the years there’s been four or five of them on earth. And they’re weak to yellow, which has to be a bit embarrassing. I actually didn’t even realise the lantern was for charging the ring, and I didn’t know about the Green Lantern Oath until news of the movie was released. I’m a bad geek.
In brightest day, in blackest night,
No evil shall escape my sight
Let those who worship evil’s might,
Beware my power… Green Lantern’s light!
The following two paragraph are spoilerific:
So, Hal Jordon (the second earth Lantern) lost his father in a fighter jet accident at a young age. His mother then forbid him to go near the base, and he spent his childhood being rebellious and obsessing over being a fighter pilot until he was finally old enough to join the Air Force.
Later, one of the Green Lanterns from another sector, Abin Sur, was transporting a nasty baddie named Atrocitus (inflammation of the atrocity?) from sector 666 (you know that ain’t a good sector) to earth. Atrocitus was able to get a glimpse of the future while performing a ritual and discovered a prophecy which fortold earth as being the birthplace of The Black, something which would lead to the end of the universe, so Abin Sur was bringing him there to try and find the source. Things don’t go as planned, Abin Sur ends up crashing his aircraft, and the ring chooses our boy Hal. Abin Sur’s friend Sinestro, who apparently later becomes the Big Bad, then arrives to investigate the crash, mentor Hal, and find Atrocitus.
Spoilers are over.
My main issue with this comic was that Hal Jordon was not likable at all. Even as an adult he acted like a 15-year-old with authority issues, which is even worse than an actual 15-year-old with authority issues. This origin story was told as a flashback in the sixth trade of the series, though, so I supposed you were meant to have seen Hal Jordon as an upstanding citizen before reading this, rather than this being the introduction to the character. That may have helped some.
As of now, I’m not running out to buy any more of the Green Lantern books, although I can see how it could be a fun series to follow if done well, with it eventually dealing with problems of a grander scale than most superhero books. Geoff Johns just didn’t really pull me in with this one.