Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Green Lantern

After a railroad accident, engineer Alan Scott is instructed by a magical lantern -built from a mystical green meteor- to make a ring from its metal, thus becoming Green Lantern. With the help of his power ring, Alan could fly and project energy beams; although he would usually confront his enemies with his fists, he eventually started forming constructs which is the most commonly known ability of any Green Lantern.


Green Lantern Alan Scott was created by artist Martin Nodell after being inspired by Wagner's The Ring of the Nibelungen, and a green railway lantern. He made his debut in All-American Comics #16 in July 1940 and immediately became a success.


Later in 1940, Green Lantern received his own title, and became a member of the Justice Society of America where he also appeared on a regular basis. Like many heroes would do years later, Alan had sidekicks, the first one was Doiby Dickles -a taxi driver- and years later he would pair with Streak the Wonder Dog, who actually stole the spotlight from him. By 1949 super heroes were not as popular anymore, and Green Lantern was cancelled with issue #38. 1951's All-Star Comics #57 was his last appearance in the Golden Age of comics.


The character returned in 1963 in the pages of The Flash #137; this time, Green Lantern and his compatriots of the Justice Society lived in a parallel dimension known as Earth-2, to keep them separate from the emerging Silver Age super heroes, which included Hal Jordan. After the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths in 1985, the parallel dimensions were merged into one, and Alan was now older since his prime had been during World War II. During this period, he temporarily became younger, ditched the ring, and adopted the name Sentinel; but in time, he was returned to his roots, and finally died in Justice Society of America #54 -the final issue of the series- saving his son, Obsidian.

Art by Joe Prado and Ivan Reis

The New 52 has brought back Earth-2, and along with it, new, modern versions of its characters. Alan Scott is a millionaire, head of the Gotham Broadcasting Company, and very much in love with a man named Samuel. The legend of The Green Lantern is about to start again, and this time, he will be the greatest hero of his world; the one who will herald a new Age of Wonders, and it all starts with a bullet train railroad accident.

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