As another entry in my attempt to get readers ready for this summers slew of comic based movies I’ll be breaking down and reviewing Geoff Johns ongoing run on Green Lantern. I usually try to recommend completed runs or series, but in this case I’ll forfeit that to talk about the Green Lantern run that’s most relevant to the upcoming movie.
As usual I’ll break it down as such:
- WHO is the artist and writer
- WHAT is it about
- WHEN was it published
- WHERE can I find it
- WHY should I read it
- HOW much will it cost
So continue reading to see my break down and review for Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern series!
Geoff Johns writes and is joined by multiple arists including Ethan Van Sciver, Ivan Reis, and Doug Mahnke
When Johns began his run on Green Lantern he looked to completely change the status quo by bringing back all kinds of old characters and revitalizing the entire Green Lantern Corps. Through the run he makes it evident that he’s been building up to various plot points, most of which came to a head in the Blackest Night event which recently passed. With his run on the series he has turned the Green Lantern from a B-List hero to the character that most comic fans can’t wait to read about each month. This is the definitive take on the Green Lantern franchise.
Johns began his run with the six issue “Green Lantern: Rebirth” which began in October of 2004 and ended in May of 2005. After this his ongoing Green Lantern series began in July of 2005 and has been running monthly since.
The series is a popular one so it’s available at most any store that sells comics, though as always the books will be cheaper if you order through Amazon. Back issues of the series aren’t impossible to find, so getting caught up shouldn’t be too hard for new readers, just check your local comic shops.
As I said, this run is the definitive Green Lantern story. Johns slowly unfolds a story that has been connected through every issue since the beginning of Rebirth, and it pays off for long time readers.
Of all the arcs in his run, however, one works best as an introduction to the character of Hal Jordan and as a lead into the upcoming movie: Secret Origins. The arc retells the origin of Hal Jordan as the Green Lantern and also establishes several enemies that appear throughout his time as the Green Lantern. It also shows us the origins of some conflict that lead into Johns own stories, and the Blackest Night event.
Aside from these points, I should touch up on the fact that Johns does a fantastic job of characterizing Hal Jordan and his supporting cast of friends and enemies. He really has a voice for existing characters like Sinestro and Hector Hammond, and he does a fantastic job creating a whole cast of new and interesting alien friends and enemies.
Another aspect that Johns created is the Emotional Spectrum. He assigns an emotion behind every color of the rainbow and then introduces us to an entire corps of characters behind that light, just like the Green Lantern Corps. An example would be that Sinestro creates an entire corps for himself by bringing in characters from around the universe who instill Fear in others, as Fear is the emotion behind the power of the Yellow Light (where Willpower is behind Green).
The creation of this emotional spectrum is probably the most important aspect of Johns entire run and it adds a deep new level to the mythos behind the Green Lantern, as well as taking notes from old stories to back up the validity of the existence of these other Corps. As well as all of this the characters Johns created for these corps have become some fan favorites, and the existence of these corps have also lead to being great fodder for fans to make some great crossover art (such as putting another character into a certain emotional corps due to their personality).
A final aspect I should mention for this series is that recently it has become one of the most important ongoing series in the DC Universe, so readers who want to be on top of whatever is going on in the DCU would do well to read along, especially with Blackest Night and Brightest Day which have both done a lot to change the mood of the DCU as a whole.
GO RATING: So why should you read Green Lantern? Get yourself ready for the movie, familiarize yourself with one of the greatest characters in the DCU, sink into the vast world of characters that Geoff Johns has created, and look at gorgeous artwork the entire way through. For all of this I give Geoff Johns ongoing Green Lantern series a 4.5/5
The series has been collected as several volumes so far with some crossover from other series, and also the Blackest Night event. I will list all essential volumes to the series. Any volume can be read on its own, but it’s better to read from beginning to end.
- Green Lantern: Rebirth - $14.99
- Green Lantern: No Fear - $12.99
- Green Lantern: Revenge of the Green Lanterns - $14.99
- Green Lantern: Wanted: Hal Jordan - $14.99
- The Sinestro Corps War volume 1 - $14.99
- The Sinestro Corps War volume 2 - $14.99
- Green Lantern: Secret Origins - $14.99
- Green Lantern: Rage of the Red Lanterns - $14.99
- Green Lantern: Agent Orange - $14.99
- Green Lantern: Blackest Night (important tie-in material) - $23.99 HC
- Blackest Night (main event) - $29.99 HC
- Green Lantern: Brightest Day (to be released in June) - $22.99 HC
All are paperback unless otherwise noted.
Also available is the ongoing Green Lantern Corps series, which works well as a supplement to the main Green Lantern book and also ties into it during the Sinestro Corps War event.