Category Archives: Green Lantern

Future of the Green Lantern Corps Revealed!

We’ve known for a few weeks now who would be taking over the Green Lantern family of books after Geoff Johns and crew’s exodus in May, but all other information was cloaked in secrecy. Today, with the release of the June 2013 solicitations, we get our first glimpse of what is to come, and I’m ready to weigh in on the future of Green Lantern.

Green Lantern 21

Green Lantern #21
Written by Robert Venditti
Illustrated by Billy Tan
Hal Jordan becomes the leader of the most feared and hated group in the universe: The Green Lantern Corps! New faces, new threats and a new beginning for the GREEN LANTERN monthlies!

Even with all this Black Lantern business, it looks like Hal will be alive and green at the end of Johns’ run. The solicit hints that the Guardians of the Universe will finally be out of the picture, with Hal taking the lead of the entire GLC. That’s a pretty tall order, but one with exciting story possibilities. It also sounds like the Green Lanterns aren’t too popular with the rest of the universe, which is an interesting change of pace. Robert Venditti has proven that he can do sci-fi well in “X-O Manowar,” and Billy Tan’s early art work shows a lot of promise. I’m not nearly as interested in this book without Johns at the helm, but I’m cautiously optimistic. A lower profile will hopefully let the other Green Lantern books share in the spotlight.

Verdict: Surprisingly, this is the GL book I’m the least interested in at this point. I’ll at least give the first issue a shot.

GLC 21

Green Lantern Corps #21
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Illustrated by Bernard Chang
It’s nonstop action as the Green Lantern Corps faces attacks on Oa and Earth…and Guy Gardner is presented with a choice that could change the balance of power between the different Lantern Corps forever!

There’s not a lot to glean from this cover or solicit, other than the fact that Guy will be in the book. However, Fialkov has talked a lot about his plans for GLC and Red Lanterns, and I am very excited for both. Fialkov plans on casting GLC and Red Lanterns as opposing forces of justice in the universe, one that is reactive and one that is proactive. Fialkov has a big crime background, and I believe his refreshing take on the Green Lantern mythos might just be what the franchise needs. If I were to predict which of the Green Lantern writers had the best chance of rising to Geoff Johns’ level of success with the franchise, it would definitely be Fialkov.

Verdict: GLC is my second most anticipated book in the new Green Lantern line. Which leads me to…

Red Lanterns 21

Red Lanterns #21
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Illustrated by Bernard Chang
It’s recruitment time for the Red Lanterns, and no one in the universe is safe…especially with the most volatile Green Lantern, Guy Gardner, suddenly in their corner! But why has Guy turned his back on his own Corps?

Yes! Red Lantern Guy Gardner! Insta-buy! But in all seriousness, I absolutely cannot wait to see what Fialkov brings to this struggling book. If Fialkov can make a book like “I, Vampire” one of the best books in the New 52, I can only imagine what amazing things he’ll do with a group of cosmic powered, napalm vomiting monsters. One thing though, if you’re going to pull the Red Lantern Guy card, make it permanent. This is the third time in as many years that he’s donned the ring. Oh, and more Dex-Star, less Bleeze and Rankorr, thanks.

Verdict: I can’t believe it, but my current least favorite Green Lantern book is my most anticipated one coming this June.

New Guardians 21

Green Lantern: New Guardians #21
Written by Justin Jordan
Illustrated by Brad Walker and Drew Hennessy
The Templar Guardians have been locked away for millennia, but they have a VERY clear idea of what they need to do next — and of all the Lanterns in the universe, they need Kyle Rayner’s help. So it’s a shame he wants nothing to do with them! But once he sees the strange anomaly lurking at the edge of the universe, he may have no choice but to get on board with their mission…

Calling this book “New Guardians” finally makes sense! I’m really excited to see Kyle sticking around as the White Lantern, and I’m really excited to learn more about these “Templar” Guardians. I’m not familiar with Justin Jordan’s work, but he gets massive praise for “Luther Strode.” However, I do know that Brad Walker is a fantastic artist. Depending on the direction this book goes, it could be the perfect continuation of the awesome massive cosmic shenanigans that Johns was known for. I fully expect it to be an improvement on Bedard’s so-so run. Oh, and that Albuquerque cover is fantastic.

Verdict: After Fialkov’s books, this is my “New Guardians” is most anticipated Green Lantern title.

Larfleeze 21

Larfleeze #1
Written by Keith Giffen and J.M. Dematteis
Illustrated by Scott Kolins
Larfleeze, the breakout character from BLACKEST NIGHT, last seen in the pages of THRESHOLD, is back in his own solo, ongoing series—and he’s not sharing it with anyone! In his debut solo adventure, Larfleeze meets Laord of the Hunt, a pan-dimensional cosmic entity that believes all living things are prey—and he’s out to turn the universe into his own private hunting reserve! And the only thing worse than Laord is the deadly beings he can summon!

I really don’t know what to make of “Larfleeze.” Coming from the writing team behind the cult classic “Justice League International,” I expect this book to have a completely different tone from the rest of the line. Giffen has said that he plans to keep this book separated from the rest of the Green Lantern books, which makes it perfect for those who are tired of the relentless Green Lantern crossovers. While I expect his book to be witty and hilarious, I don’t really know if it’s a strong enough concept to make me want to read it on a monthly basis. That said, I loved Giffen’s “O.M.A.C.” and “Doom Patrol,” so if “Larfleeze” can capture the magic of either of those books, then I’ll be absolutely smitten.

Verdict: ??? Too soon to tell, ask again later.

It saddened me to learn of Johns’ departure, I think this is the exact kind of shake-up the Green Lantern line needed to stay interesting. While “Green Lantern” proper is probably going to take a hit without Johns, the other books seem more interesting than they have in years. It looks like each of the four Earth Lanterns will have a book to call their own (Hal in GL, Guy in RL, John in GLC, Kyle in NG, oh, and Baz in JLA), something  fans have clammored for since the line began to expand. At the risk of sounding overly dramatic, a bright new day is dawning for the Green Lantern books, and I couldn’t be more pleased. I only hope that the franchise will continue to get the same level of attention and recognition as it has received under Johns’ tenure.

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New Green Lantern Teams Announced

Well, that came a lot sooner than expected.

New Green Lantern

Just a little over a week since the announcement of the end of Geoff Johns’ groundbreaking “Green Lantern” run, along with the mass exodus of all Green Lantern family creative teams, DC has officially announced their new blood. Here are the new teams, revealed exclusively through MTV Geek:

Green Lantern – Written by Robert Venditti, Illustrated by Billy Tan

Green Lantern Corps – Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov, Illustrated by Bernard Chang

Green Lantern: New Guardians – Written by Justin Jordan, Illustrated by Brad Walker

Red Lanterns – Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov, Illustrated by Alessandro Vitti

Larfleeze – Written by Keith Giffen, Illustrated by Scott Kolins

As you can see, Bleeding Cool’s initial reports were right on target. All current Green Lantern titles remain, along with the new “Larfleeze” title, which will likely spin out of the back-up feature in “Threshold,” although it could also be possible that Larfleeze could take over the title entirely.

Overall, I’m very excited for these changes. Check back soon as more information comes to light and I go in-depth on my thoughts on the new creative teams.

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Rumor Control: New Green Lantern Writers [UPDATED]

UPDATE:

This morning, Bleeding Cool added a small wrinkle to the rumors reported yesterday. The site is now reporting that sources indicate Peter Tomasi, current writer of “Green Lantern Corps” and long time collaborator of Geoff Johns, will be taking over the main Green Lantern title in June. That same source reports Joshua Hale Fialkov writing both “Green Lantern Corps” and “Red Lanterns,” which stacks up against comments recently made by the writer, where he announced he would be writing two interconnected titles. No word on “New Guardians” or writers Justin Jordan, Robert Venditti, or Keith Giffen.

Tomasi’s work on GLC has left a lot to be desired of late, but his run on Vol. 2, pre-New 52, rivaled Geoff Johns’ own work in quality at times. With a strong artist (Patrick Gleason comes to mind) and the right cast of characters, Tomasi could do a very good job. Although it would be nice to get entirely new blood on the franchise, I can understand DC’s desire to leave one of the old guard in charge of the flagship title.

ORIGINAL STORY:

I’m expecting to get a lot of blogging mileage from the Green Lantern books over the coming months.

I’ve got a heavily vested interest in the Green Lantern family of books, so from the moment Geoff Johns and the rest of the crew stepped down from their posts I began to speculate on who might step into replace them. I figure we’ve got less than a month (when June solicits roll out) before DC pulls back the curtain, but Bleeding Cool is looking to beat them to it.

Coming out of the recent DC creative retreat, Bleeding Cool is reporting that the four writers coming on to the Green Lantern titles in June are Joshua Hale Fialkov, Robert Venditti, Justin Jordan, and Keith Giffen. Having four rumored writers seems to suggest that none of the current books will see cancellation, although there’s the possibility that current books could be replaced by new titles. Bleeding Cool does not attribute any writer to a particular book, and qualifies that one or more of these rumored replacements could be wrong, but that’s not going to stop me from going into full on speculation mode. Here’s what I think about these four writers, and which books they should be attached to. Continue reading

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…And Geoff Johns Takes Everyone With Him

Continuing off of this morning’s news that long time “Green Lantern” writer Geoff Johns would be stepping down from the series, it seems that all the writers of the various Green Lantern family books are leaving the titles, leaving the state of the franchise very up in the air.

In my opinion, this would be the perfect time to clean house, getting rid of the completely unnecessary “Red Lanterns,” merging “Corps” and “New Guardians” into a single book, and perhaps launching a “Tales of the Corps” style book that tells anthology style stories revolving around the various Corps. However, none of the titles are marked for cancellation, so we will probably see a major creative shuffle coming in June. It’s nearly impossible to speculate on what this new landscape will look like, but it sure is fun. I for one have always wanted a Morrison penned Lantern book, too bad he’s on his way out the door. Out of DC’s current stable of writers, I really can’t think of many writers I would trust with filling such big shoes as Johns is leaving behind. Snyder doesn’t really seem like the right fit, and Lemire is attached to far too many books as it is.

Actually, I think the person I’d like to see most on a GL book is Joshua Hale Fialkov. Let’s make that happen.

Unless we’re also talking Marvel writers. Can you just imagine a Jonathan Hickman “Green Lantern?” I know it’s impossible, but I can dream.

Check out an updated cover for “Green Lantern” #20, as well as the covers for the other Green Lantern group books below.

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Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern Comes To An End

After spending the last 9 years building a new mythology from the ground up and making the Green Lantern a truly A-list character, Geoff Johns is wrapping up his run this May with issue #20. Johns’ run on “Green Lantern” will always be special to me, as it was his ‘Sinestro Corps War’ arc that cemented my enjoyment of DC Comics and graphic story telling as a whole. I predicted Johns’ imminent departure a few months back, and made a few bolder predictions as well. Check out that post here.

gl_20_cvr_02

Cover to “Green Lantern” #20, the last issue penned by Geoff Johns.

The issue, drawn by Doug Mankhe, will be a whopping 64 pages. Major thanks to Geoff Johns for all the time he has spent with this series, and to Mankhe for making it so darn good-looking. It’s been one of heck of a ride. Now begins the anxious waiting for the announcement of a successor. Whoever it is, I hope he or she brings the same unbridled creativity that Johns brought, along with a fresh new look at one of my favorite comic book franchises.

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Wrath of the First Lantern

With yesterday’s release of solicitations for February 2013, DC has stealthily revealed the next story in Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern epic. Following Rise of the Third Army, Wrath of the First Lantern will delve deeper into the mysterious character first introduced in Green Lantern Annual #1.  USA Today has an interview with Johns on the next arc that you can read here. Surprising, DC hasn’t made much noise about the announcement of what seems to be a crescendo in Johns’ run. Since the end of Blackest Night I’ve wondered how much longer Johns plans to stay on Green Lantern. After 8 years and over 100 total issue of shepherding the character to true A-list status (at least among comic fans), one can’t help but wonder how many more stories he has to tell. Well, I’ve stopped guessing how or when Johns is going to end his GL run, but based on the new solicits, last week’s issue of Green Lantern, and Johns own words on the Wrath of the First Lantern story, I have pretty good idea of what’s coming next.

Green Lantern is getting rebooted. Continue reading

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From NYCC: Keith Giffen Returns to Cosmic Comics in “Threshold”

News of the next wave of New 52 books is slowly starting to trickle out. We’ve gotten word on Geoff John and David Finch’s Justice League of America as well as Scott Snyder and Jim Lee’s unnamed Superman project. Now we have news of a third book, Threshold, a sort of cosmic genre anthology book, similar to All-Star Western and Sword of Sorcery.

The series will spin out of Giffen’s Green Lantern: New Guardian Annual and will feature a deep-cover GL, Jediah Caul. Drawn by Tom Raney, the main feature is titled “Hunted” and will feature  concepts from various DC cosmic properties, including Green Lantern and Blue Beetle. The series will drop the main character into a “Hunger Games”-esque situation, in which he has 24 hours to prepare before bounty hunters come gunning for him. This is a popular sport in a new location in the DCU, which Giffen has named “Tenedrian Dominion.” The series will also have a back-up feature, the first of which is drawn by Scott Kolins and will feature the Orange Lantern Larfleeze.

While I initially thought this to be Kyle Rayner in a new costume, could this actually be new GL Jediah Caul?

It seems like these concepts are based on the plans Giffen had in place when he was writing Superman Annual #1. It’s likely those plans are now being incorporated into New Guardians and Threshold. Interestingly, Giffen has said that Threshold will pick up threads from the end of Blue Beetle, suggesting that the book is set for cancellation. Prior to NYCC, a tweet from Rob Liefeld suggested that Blue Beetle, Legion Lost, Frankenstein, and Grifter were next on the New 52 chopping block. While this isn’t an outright confirmation it does lend credence to the rumor.

I’m a sucker for space and sci-fi stories, and Keith Giffen’s masterful Annihilation series from Marvel proves he knows how to tell these kinds of stories. This is definitely an unexpected but pleasant surprise coming out of New York. You can check out this interview with Giffen at Newsarama for more info on Threshold.

 

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More DC Annuals in January 2013

Next week is solicitations week for DC comics, but in light of New York Comic-Con we’re getting a sneak peek of what’s to come at the start of 2013. Earlier I predicted that, being a 5 Wednesday month, January would feature more annual issues from DC. It turns out that is most certainly the case. This batch of annuals includes lesser books from the Superman, Batman, and Green Lantern books. Join me after the jump to see what’s coming up, along with which books I’m most excited for. Continue reading

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Review: Green Lantern Annual #1

Even after 7 years of fantastic Green Lantern stories, Geoff Johns, a.k.a. the Wizard of Oa, still has curtains left to pull back.

Written by Geoff Johns
Illustrated by Ethan Van Sciver and Pete Woods

• The conclusion of “THE REVENGE OF BLACK HAND”!
• Everything changes here! EVERYTHING!

(Warning, some plot points will be discussed so SPOILER WARNING is in effect)

For once, that solicitation tagline isn’t hyperbole. This annual issue of Green Lantern picks up from where issue #12 left and blows the current status quo out of the water. Geoff Johns brings in frequent collaborator Ethan Van Sciver, the man responsible for redefining the look of Hal Jordan for a new generation, to pencil this issue. Because of this, it’s very easy to try and compare this issue to 2007’s Sinestro Corps Special. Both issues were oversized, were drawn by Van Sciver, and act as the opening shot to the next major GL storyline. Only time will tell if Rise of the Third Army stacks up against Sinestro Corps War, but it is a very promising start.

This prologue builds heavily on plot threads carried over from Blackest Night, Brightest Day, and War of the Green Lanterns. Johns has had the Guardians of the Universe, the creators of the Green Lantern Corps, on one way descent into madness and despotism and this is where the crap hits the fan. The Guardians decide that the only way to rid the universe of chaos is to eliminate free will. This, first and foremost, requires the destruction of the universe’s greatest embodiment of will, the Green Lantern Corps. The ends that the Guardians are prepared to go to meet this goal are disturbing, the means by which they achieve it are shocking, and the overall implications are terribly exciting. Oh, and yeah, that cover isn’t just for show.

I can’t get to far into a plot discussion without spoiling the issue, but here’s a few things that this issue brings to the table: the resolution of the Revenge of Black Hand arc (for now), the first glimpse of the Chamber of Shadows and the First Lantern that have been teased since War of the Green Lanterns, the fates of Hal Jordan and Sinestro, and the Guardians going all out crazy.

There’s not much more that I can say about the art other than it is exactly what we’ve come to expect from Ethan Van Sciver on Green Lantern. The epilogue, drawn by Pete Woods, was suitably disturbing and executed extremely well.

There’s a sense that Geoff Johns is nearing the close of his epic Green Lantern saga. The desperate tone, the escalation of the Guardian’s tactics, the twinge of hope in the form of (Highlight for Spoliers!!!) Hal and Sinestro’s rings, all give an “Empire Strikes Back” feel that can only lead to a third act upheaval where the good guy triumphs. Then again, I thought that Johns would leave after Blackest Night ended and here he is, over two years later, still plugging away. Regardless, I can’t wait to see what Johns has up his sleeve with the borg-like Third Army and the new Green Lantern Baz. This is an exciting time to be a Green Lantern fan and a great time to jump in.

Rating: 9.5- This is consistently one of the best super-hero comics out there. Read it.

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The Road to the New JLA

This past week at Fan Expo in Toronto, Canada, DC Comics made a surprising announcement. Geoff Johns, super-scribe and CCO of DC Entertainment, will be going the way of Brian Michael Bendis by taking on new Justice League book in addition to the original one launched at the start of the New 52. Justice League of America, launching in 2013 with art by David Finch, will feature an extremely eclectic and a (imo) very exciting cast of characters. The team as been foreshadowed in several books and the implications it brings for the future of the New 52 are vast. Today I’ll be talking about the clues we have been given thus far and speculating on what might still be to come. Also, with the upcoming #0 issues celebrating the 1 year anniversary of the New 52, I’ll include a list of titles that you should check out if you want to follow the major story lines leading up to JLA and more exciting stories in the DCU.

The new faces of the Justice League of America (Image from mtv.com/geek)

When the New 52 was announced, we learned that Geoff Johns and Jim Lee would lead the way with a modernized version of DC’s legendary super-team, this time known only as “Justice League”. The team followed the pattern set by Grant Morrison’s “Big 7” team from the 90’s, which is widely considered to be the greatest incarnation of the Justice League ever created. The major difference would be that Cyborg, most well know from his position on the Teen Titans, would take the place of JL mainstay Martian Manhunter, who would find a place on the new Stormwatch. Justice League International and Justice League Dark were also announced along with Justice League to round out an Avengers style family of team books.

Since that time, Johns has been planting seeds of things to come. Before JL’s first issue, DC released a promo image that featured characters that were to be included in Justice League later on, outside of the main seven. At the time of this writing, only one of those characters, Green Arrow, has made an appearance in the book. Said appearance took place in Justice League #8, and featured Arrow trying to earn a place in the League. While he didn’t accomplish his goal, a secretive meeting with Justice League liaison Steve Trevor hinted that Arrow might be heading up his own team in the future.

Pictured on the left of the Justice League, from top to bottom: Deadman, currently a member of Justice League Dark; The Atom, who has only appeared in the FCBD special; Element Woman, a new character from Flashpoint who as since only appeared in the FCBD special; Firestorm, who has had some interaction with JLI. On the Right of the Justice League, top to bottom: Green Arrow; Hawkman; Lady Luck, a new character that has yet to make an appearance in the New 52; Mera, wife of Aquaman.

The next tease we got came from DC’s Free Comic Book Day 2012 offering, “The New 52 #1,” also written by Geoff Johns. The final four page splash, illustrated by Justice League artist Jim Lee, depicted the League fighting amongst themselves and various other DC heroes, many of which were depicted in the aforementioned promotional image. A new Green Lantern was also shown for the first time. This was when readers learned of the upcoming event known as the “Trinity War”.

Notice any similarities between the characters depicted in this teaser and the ones shown in the promo?

Since then, we have learned that Justice League International was to be cancelled, with an annual issue written by Geoff Johns and Dan Didio acting as the capstone. Also, Martian Manhunter recently left Stormwatch. This all sets the stage for the formation of the Justice League of America, which seems to be the team that was hinted at in Justice League #8.

Now, let the speculation begin. There is going to be a lot revealed this Wednesday with the release of three books written by Geoff Johns; Green Lantern Annual #1, Justice League #12, and Justice League International #1. The GL Annual will reveal the fate of Hal Jordan and set the stage for the coming of Baz, the new GL revealed in the FCBD special and featured in Justice League of America. Justice League #12 wraps up the current story arc and that book and is said to have major ramifications for the team and entire DCU. These threads will be picked up in the JLI Annual as that team appears to be dismantled, making way for the JLA. Now, looking at the teaser images shown above, we see that Hawkman, Green Arrow, Baz, and Vibe are accounted for in JLA. Deadman is a member of Justice League Dark, but is the only member of that team to be featured, suggesting a major role in coming events. Johns has said that Shazam will be joining the main Justice League in the coming future, which makes it strange that it appears to be Black Adam that is featured in the Trinity War teaser. Could that just be a coloring error, or is there a missing link we don’t yet know of? That leaves Mera, Element Woman, and The Atom as the only characters to not currently be featured on a team. It makes sense that Mera would join Aquaman on the Justice League. Element Woman and the Atom have not made a true appearance in the New 52, and could end up on either Justice League team, but I feel that if they were to be in JLA they would’ve been featured in the initial teaser image. Lady Luck is an absolute enigma, having not been depicted or even mentioned by Johns since before the New 52 even began. I’m very interested to see if the lack of information about the character has to do with an upcoming plot, or if the character was discarded along the way as new ideas were introduced.

Common speculation is that the three Justice League teams might be the “Trinity” referred to in “Trinity War” and that the story will involve the three teams fighting against each other. However, one of the only clear fights shown in the teaser is Hawkman vs. Green Arrow, both of whom are members of JLA, debunking this theory. It is more likely that the Trinity refers to either the trinity of Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, or that of the Trinity of Sin introduced in the FCBD special.

There’s a long way to go before we get to the Trinity War. DC has heavily hinted that the event is set to take place September 2013, marking the two-year anniversary of the New 52. Next month, DC will be celebrating the one year anniversary of the New 52 with #0 issues, special issue in each series that are perfect jump on points for new readers. If you missed out on the New 52 when it began and what to get into, now’s your chance. Here’s a list of books that you should definitely be following in order to keep up with the all the major developments in the DCU:

  • Justice League
  • Justice League Dark (Issue #9 onward)
  • Green Lantern
  • Phantom Stranger (coming in September)
  • Justice League of America (coming 2013)

It would also be a good idea to check out this week’s Justice League International Annual #1 and FCBD DC The New 52 #1, which is free here on Comixology. Another book that might be good to follow is Team 7, another book launching alongside Phantom Stranger that will focus on a black ops government in the early days of the New 52. The group includes Steve Trevor, who Johns has said will be a major character in upcoming stories, as well as characters like Black Canary, Deathstroke, Grifter, and Amanda Waller. If you don’t have a comic store nearby, all these issues can be purchased at comixology.com and can be read on your computer, along with any iOS or Android powered device. It’s an extremely exciting time to be a DC fan.

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