Hal Jordan and The Green Lantern Corps #22 (DC Comics)
The Green Lanterns always kinda mystified me.
Sure, yes, the Lanterns themselves are wicked cool, and I’m showing my age by using phrases like ‘wicked cool.’ Essentially, they’re a galactic defense force that have weaponized imagination through willpower. That’s awesome. They dip in a chromatic spectrum and use the color green to create whatever they want through willpower alone – they can fly, understand languages, know laws, and communicate with one another from galaxies distant. There’s a whole corp of them out there, an organization with its own laws and culture, and a single Lantern is given a swath of the galaxy to protect.
It harkens back to the old idea of ‘one riot, one ranger,’ an old saying out of Texas that applied to the idea that a single man could maintain order over large swaths of people all by himself. Like Texas itself, however, there is a dark corrupt underbelly to the Green Lanterns.
The corruption starts with the people that empowered the corps in the first place. Guardians, they’re called, but they’re pretty much responsible for every cosmic thing that goes wrong in the DCU and are, collectively, a bunch of jerks. Case in point: they decided they didn’t like the color yellow and so trapped the emotion yellow corresponds with in the battery they made that lets them weaponize green. This resulted in the Green Lanterns being weak against the color yellow and pissed the hell out of the intelligent being they imprisoned and spun propaganda about for eons.
So, yeah, the Lanterns were all kinds of powerful unless you came at them with, say, a yellow butter knife, and then they were helpless before you. Weird.
One of the most powerful and recognized Lanterns, an alien named Sinestro, had it in for his human peer, Hal Jordan. The two of them fought and it’s some of the best writing you’ll find in comic – classic Green Lantern comics featuring Sinestro are some of the best you’ll find. Sinestro went off the beaten path, though, and found himself at odds with the Green Lanterns. In response, he founded the Sinestro Corps, who use fear to weaponize imagination through the color yellow.
Initially, there was war between the two Lantern Corps, but these days they’re trying to work together. The problem is human Lantern Hal Jordan is not exactly the best representative of our species (still better than Guy), and his flaws are… well, they’re many.
The Green Lantern comics are ones I check in with from time to time because they are either passable or great, and my most recent check in revealed one very important thing: they are being written by Robert Venditti, the same demigod that wrote X-O Manowar. Those of you that don’t know about X-O Manowar need to change that, and those of you lucky enough to already be reading this run of comic are envied because I’m now playing catch up.
Sarko’s parentage, though? Well done, Venditti. I missed your clever way with the pen.
V. Ken Marion, Dexter Vines, and Dinei Ribeiro have the task of bringing this comic to life, translating the mania of weaponized imagination into something the rest of us can understand, and their combined efforts are a joy to behold. This comic is awesome, and you should read it.