Green Lantern comic

DC’s Green Lantern mythos has always been a wellspring for incredible ideas, from alien rings that turn thought to reality, to Geoff Johns’ modern entangling of the visual spectrum with corresponding emotions. The well was arguably poisoned with the 2011 film adaptation, a cookie-cutter Hal Jordan story with an unearned character arc that left audiences feeling sour. And while there have been plenty of good Green Lantern comics since, the film side of things has struggled to get its Space Corps off the ground again.

One wonders, then, if that could change with this upcoming comic relaunch from artist Liam Sharp (Judge Dredd) and writer Grant Morrison (Batman, All-Star Superman).

Green Lantern #1 is set to launch this fall, re-telling the origin of the first human Green Lantern (the first one inducted into the Green Lantern Corps anyway; “golden age” Lantern Alan Scott had a different backstory), with writer Morrison telling IGN:

“Basically, it’s no more apocalypse-ending storylinesThe basic concept is that [Hal Jordan] is like a space cop that patrols a sector of the universe where anything can happen. We’ve made it more like a police procedural.”

In a superhero landscape where everything builds to gargantuan “event” tales, both on the page and on screen, this feels like a refreshing promise. And while everyone who’s ever re-launched a comic in the last seven years has said something similar, Grant Morrison is, shall we say, a horse of a different dimension, in that he has a near unparalleled ability to get to the root of what makes superheroes tick.

Morrison goes on to say:

“We’re doing Hal Jordan where, you know he’s a good cop, but is he really a good guy? And we’re looking into his relationships and how he deals with people. And also the fact that, if you’ve got a job as a space cop, it’s hard to be stuck on the planet Earth. He has other lives on other planets. We’re gonna be looking into a lot of things that I don’t think we’ve seen a lot with Hal Jordan before.”

Green Lantern - Liam Sharp

Liam Sharp’s artwork thus far previews an imaginative remixing of Hal’s first alien encounter. His Lantern predecessor Abin Sur, previously just “a human, but purple,” now appears to be a crystalline, biomechanical being, because why the hell not? This is a world of infinite possibility, and limiting the concepts to variations of people is a bore.

Take Watchmen writer Alan Moore for instance, whose additions to the mythos include Green Lanterns Bzzd and Mogo, a tiny housefly and his friend an entire planet, as well as “F-Sharp Bell Corps” member Rot Lop Fan, part of a species with neither eyes nor conception of light. Morrison has often been compared to Moore, so this pairing fits like a glove.

DC and Marvel’s comics divisions, now owned by Time Warner and Disney respectively, are largely seen by execs as experimentation grounds. If something new strikes a chord with readers, there’s a good chance it’ll get bumped up to the film slate sooner rather than later. With a potential Green Lantern Corps film having to compete with the likes of Guardians of the Galaxy, having creators such as Morrison and Sharp re-tool Hal and give him feet of clay could provide a new basis for his on-screen counterpart and the colorful world he inhabits.

Green Lantern #1 hits shelves in November 2018.

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