Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Classics - Green Lantern #40

Ah, the good old days when DC's continuity was still easy to follow. I thought it would be fun to look back on it as we steel ourselves for the upcoming reboot.

When this issue of Green Lantern was published in 1965, it was all easy to understand: the Silver Age heroes were all on Earth-1, and the Golden Age heroes were all on Earth-2.

Heroes from one world would occasionally cross over into the other to take part in adventures with their counterparts (both Flashes, both GLs, both Atoms, or the Justice League and the Justice Society). It was a clever yet simple solution to the problem.

Since then, it's all become muddied to the point that the DC Universe needs a clean wash to start over again (we'll see how long it takes them to start mucking up the new continuity).

This was a pivotal issue for more reasons than one - not only did it feature a crossover of the GLs (Hal Jordan and Alan Scott), but it also finally told the origin of the Guardians of the Universe (since expanded on) and the evil Guardian named Krona.

In the distant past Krona tried to discover the origin of the universe and caused a cosmic catastrophe. As punishment he was converted to energy and shot into space.

Krona manages to return to life when he makes contact with the Earth-2 Green Lantern's ring - thus the team-up and the fight for all existence.

It's a terrific story by John Broome as it neatly ties together all the separate plot points neatly while throwing in a few massive disasters just for fun.

The art is by the legendary Gil Kane, and while I've never been a big fan of Sid Greene's inking on Kane (it always seemed just a bit thick for Kane's thin lines), here the team does fantastic work.

The thing that makes me hopeful about the upcoming reboot is the idea that we could get stories like this again - ground-breaking, entertaining stories that feel fresh - but don't require a scorecard to sort out all the players.

Grade: A-



Anonymous said...

Today this single, done-in-one
issue would be a company wide cross
over event with multiple issues and
titles and variant covers...and not
one of the 2011 comics would sell as well as that one 1965 Green
Lantern book!
That's what Geoff Johns learned
from studying the much can I s-t-r-e-t-c-h it out?

Sam Kujava

Chuck said...

Sam, ain't it the truth!