If you’ve read comic books or watched any of the numerous superhero movies or TV shows, there’s a good chance you know who Green Lantern is. If you’re not reading the current Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps series, it might be a little intimidating to try to start reading. Even if you manage to get caught up on the past forty issues of the series, which you should, there would still be the question: What else happened in the character’s history?
That’s the beauty of the Earth One books. Green Lantern Earth One gives new and longtime readers a chance to discover the character for the first time.
The Earth One stories give readers a re-interpretation of the classic heroes. Recent characters given the spotlight include Wonder Woman, Teen Titans, Batman, and Superman. While Hal Jordan may look a little like past versions, Corinna Bechko and Gabriel Hardman provide plenty of changes that makes the story compelling while still retaining the essence of who Hal is supposed to be.
This version of Hal is an astronaut mining asteroids while longing for something more. This is when he discovers the Green Lantern ring. This may sound similar to past versions, but when an old Manhunter robot attacks, Hal soon discovers there’s not much left of the Green Lantern Corps.
Other members of the Corps, such as Kilowog and Arisia, are also given the Earth One treatment. It’s fascinating to see the new versions, because even though you might know them from other appearances, there’s no telling how they’ll behave in this story here. This adds to the fun of reading the story.
Then there’s the art.
Hardman’s art along with colors by Jordan Boyd really make the book shine. Sci-fi comics sometimes come across as too artificial. I’m often pulled out of the story because everything looks too two-dimensional with colors that are too bright. Hardman’s art and Boyd’s colors are glorious. There’s a lot happening in the story with plenty to see on each page. You’ll definitely want to take the time to savor every detail.
The book has its own unique feel despite being part of the DC/Earth One universe. With most of the action taking place in space and other planets, there is no need to worry about continuity or where other characters are when a catastrophe strikes. You’ll realize just how much you’ve been wanting to explore space and other planets in the Earth One Universe.
Seeing the balance of how the characters appear compared to past interpretations, you can’t help but want to see more. The feature-length story covers a lot of ground. It might feel like the pacing is a little uneven at times, but part of that is because of the story isn’t separated into issues or chapters. It’s a complete story that goes far beyond a simple origin. Hal covers a lot of ground (and space) in his journey of discovering who and what the Green Lantern Corps are and should be.
There’s no denying the importance of the single comic book issues and stories in the regular DC Universe. Having a self-contained story with a new beginning can be a great thing. Green Lantern Earth One delivers on many fronts. We’re given a slightly different, yet familiar, Hal Jordan along with an action-packed story with amazing art and colors. If you’re a long time Green Lantern fan or never read the GL comics because you didn’t know where to begin, this is a book you need to check out.
The only question we’re left with: How long do we have to wait for Volume 2?