Comic Review – “Green Lantern: Emerald Twilight”

Imagine you’re an incredibly powerful super hero. Now imagine that a person who pretended to be a hero you trusted sent you off on a wild goose chase, and then wiped out everyone and everything you cared about while you were gone. What would you do?

General Information

Title: Green Lantern: Emerald Twilight
Credited to: Ron Marz, Bill Willingham, Fred Haynes, Darryl Banks, Romeo Tanghal, Robert Campanella, Dennis Cramer
Original Publication Date: 1994
ISBN: 1-56389-164-6
Cover Price: $5.95 US, $8.00 Can
Buy from: Amazon.com or Amazon.ca

Premise

After the events in The Return Of Superman, Hal Jordan finds it difficult to cope with his loss.

High Point

“You shall have to do.”

Low Point

There were a number of occasions with very small panels that needed to be larger. So much detail was lost that Hal’s head would sometimes be a skin colour blob with no features and no mask. It’s a bit unnerving.

The Scores

I’ve seen heroes go to dark places before. (Heck, Batman never leaves it.) I’ve never seen a hero snap, taking out an entire superpowered army with him before. Most of the mass destruction in comic books is undone somehow at the end of the storyline, but this stuck. It’s nice to see that the death and return of Superman storyline had long-term implications for something in the DC Universe. I give it 5 out of 6.

The artwork is usually good, and surprisingly even for something with three artists. (Three issues, three artists. Is this common within a single storyline at DC?) My only complaint is that I mentioned above; some of the panels needed too much detail to be as small as they are. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story is well done. For once the hero isn’t able to deal with the devastating images they deal with every day on the job. Hal’s reaction is very plausible. I give it 5 out of 6.

The characterization is also very well done. We understand Hal, his father, Killwog, Guardians in general and how Ganthet is unique among them. We even learn a bit about Sinestro. The only prominent character we don’t yet know much about is Kyle Rayner. (He’s not even named here.) The only character who gets a lot of exposure is Hal, but that’s the way a story like this should be told. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response this produced was very positive. It held my interest easily, right from the introduction. Finally crossing the line had an impact, as did the cliff-hanger ending. (Where is Hal when this ends? What is he doing?) I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow through most of the volume was good. Some of the battles against other Green Lanterns seemed to have a lot of conversation, though. I give it 4 out of 6.

Overall, this is a very good comic, and it’s worth tracking down if you can manage it. (I had to get mine through eBay.) I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Green Lantern: Emerald Twilight receives 33 out of 42.

Additional Notes and Comments

If anyone knows of a trade paperback that details Kyle Rayner’s first few days as a Green Lantern, I’d like to know which one it is. This seems like a nice jumping-on point.

4 replies on “Comic Review – “Green Lantern: Emerald Twilight””

  1. Foeclan says:

    Reason he wasn’t on Earth

    Hal was actually off-planet because the Guardians sent him to investigate the events that occurred in Trinity (a storyline the crossed over between GL, Darkstars, and L.E.G.I.O.N.). So I imagine there was a bit of anger with the Guardians for sending him off to deal with what was, in essence, their problem (it was a renegade Controller) so that he wasn’t around to stop Coast City’s destruction, and then not letting him deal with it. Hal’s quit the Corps. in the past because he was tired of the Guardians screwing around with his life (he returned just after Crisis).

    This story picks up in Emerald Fallout, which occurred over a couple of issues of Guy Gardner’s series. I don’t think they’ve collected it. There is a collected edition of Kyle’s first few issues. It’s called Green Lantern: Baptism of Fire. There’s a blurb about it on dccomics.com (which I can’t link to directly… stupid frames). ISBN is 1-56389-524-2.

    • fiziko says:

      Re: Reason he wasn’t on Earth

      Hal was actually off-planet because the Guardians sent him to investigate the events that occurred in Trinity (a storyline the crossed over between GL, Darkstars, and L.E.G.I.O.N.).

      My bad. I thought he went with the rest of the JLA when the cyborg Superman sent them off-planet in the Return of Superman storyline.

      As for the trades, Baptism of Fire is in DC’s backlist, so ordering it through any comic store that doesn’t already have it on the shelf should be very easy. Thanks for the info!

      • Foeclan says:

        Re: Reason he wasn’t on Earth

        Thanks for the info!

        No problem. I’m something of a walking encyclopedia of GL stuff. I’ve been collecting it since I was 5. I found the idea that, not only was this guy Green Lantern, but so is that gem-guy, and that fish-headed guy, and that giant mosquito, to be really interesting. I hope they get around to rebuilding the Corps. sometime soon. They’re kind of working towards it after the events in Legacy: Last Will and Testament of Hal Jordan.

        • fiziko says:

          Re: Reason he wasn’t on Earth

          No problem. I’m something of a walking encyclopedia of GL stuff. I’ve been collecting it since I was 5. I found the idea that, not only was this guy Green Lantern, but so is that gem-guy, and that fish-headed guy, and that giant mosquito, to be really interesting. I hope they get around to rebuilding the Corps. sometime soon. They’re kind of working towards it after the events in Legacy: Last Will and Testament of Hal Jordan.

          I’m a fan of the concept as well. The origin allows for a powerful hero that doesn’t call for an accident, but still doesn’t leave much room for someone on Earth just recreating the origin. At the same time, it’s not locked into a single hero, so the writers can actually make the guy age at a normal rate, unlike most other heroes in comics, if they chose to do so. Green Lantern, Flash, and Nightwing are the three DC heroes that make me want to get into that Universe. I hope they do a promotional price on the next run of “Green Lantern Archives Vol. 1” so I can afford to pick it up.

          Oh, and if anyone hasn’t heard, DC just announced that the next printing of “Batman Archives Vol. 1,” which is something like Marvel Masterworks, or a full-colour 300 page Essential (like the ones we’ve reviewed here), will be priced for consumers at $20US in its next printing this August. This is a nice break from the regular $50 US price tag that’s been keeping me away from them. The idea is to get people to buy the cheap volume ones when they are reprinted, and then get them hooked so they’ll buy the later volumes at the regular prices. They had something similar last year, but the reduced price was a sticker, so retailers were prone to peeling the sticker off and charging regular price, keeping the profits for themselves. The next run will have the new price on the dust cover, so they shouldn’t be able to do that. I’ll do a full news article on this when the volume is solicited, which should be June.

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