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Comic Book / The Green Lantern

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Intergalactic Lawman

The Green Lantern is a comic book series published by DC Comics, launched in 2018 and written by Grant Morrison and art by Liam Sharp. It's also been touted by Morrison as his last mainstream comic work.

Starring Hal Jordan as the titular Green Lantern once more, the series combines Space Opera and Police Procedural elements, as made clear with the title of issue #1: "Intergalactic Lawman."

The series is a return to the cosmic cop stories of the past, with Jordan investigating crimes ranging from intergalactic space piracy to grand theft auto (as in, stealing the entire planet Earth). The primary threat building in the early issues involves the Blackstars, a fanatical offshoot of the Darkstars looking to replace the Green Lantern Corps as protectors of the universe.


This series provides examples of:

     “Season One” and “Blackstars” 
  • Achilles' Heel: Anti-Matter Sinestro claims that the Qwa-Man has one, but he's knocked out before he can tell Hal what it is.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: Spectra of the Multiverse Green Lanterns is implied to be a version of Doctor Spectrum, the Green Lantern pastiche from Marvel's Squadron Supreme judging from her name and the prisms on her hands being reminiscent of Doctor Spectrum's Power Prism.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: The Green Skinned Alien Babe Pengowirr is revealed to be the Artificial Intelligence of Hal's power ring.
  • Band of Brothers: The Green Lanterns are this to one another, sticking up for Jordan when he's put on trial for executing a planetary slavery. This makes the revelation that there's a mole in the group even more troubling for Jordan.
  • Big Bad: Controller Mu.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: Parodied by the Watchdogs of the Universe, an intergalactic peacekeeping force whose agents are all invisible. They monitor millions of unaware worlds, but their workdays are only three hours long.
  • Bigger on the Inside: The world inside the power ring, into which Jordan has to travel after the Blackstar Controller Mu sets off a potentially universe-destroying bomb.
  • Blatant Lies: Jordan's claim of "self-defense" when executing a space slaver.
  • Body Backup Drive: Controller Mu has several bodies, although it's less of a contingency in case something happens to the one he's using and more out of necessity due to his intellect being too vast to fit in a single corporeal form.
  • The Bus Came Back: This is a Grant Morrison work so it's a given.
    • Rot Lop Fan, the sightless Green Lantern created by Alan Moore returns as Evil Star's jailer.
    • The Xeen Arrow, an alternate version of Oliver Queen from Dimension Zero whose last appearance was in 1958.
    • The Green Lantern of Earth-20 (Abin Sur of the Society of Super-Heroes) returns in issue #9 with a group of multiversal Lanterns to recruit Hal Jordan to fight the "Mad Lantern." He first appeared in the Grant Morrison series The Multiversity.
    • Issue #9 features a multitude of obscure Silver Age characters as the United Planets Superwatch, including Superwoman Luma Lynai and Hal Kar, the Golden Age precursor to Mon-El.
  • Call-Back:
    • Jordan experiences a sense of deja vu when Chriselon crash-lands in the desert, much like Abin Sur did years earlier.
    • The Annual issue features Helen Jordan, who briefly mentions her adventures with Hal when he was the Spectre.
    • Hal joins the other Green Lanterns of the Multiverse as they investigate Earth-15, a perfect universe that was totally destroyed. Earth-15 was indeed destroyed by Superboy-Prime in Countdown to Final Crisis after going on a temper tantrum exclaiming this world was a fake. The Green Lantern of Earth-9 even summons the spirits of this world's Superman (Lor-Zod), Batman (Jason Todd), and Wonder Woman (Donna Troy). It later turns out the Miracle Machine created the universe where the Blackstars were prominent instead of the Green Lanterns by writing over Universe-15.
    • The Blackstars reveal to Hal that they have built the Miracle Machine from Final Crisis, which itself is revealed to be the Genesis Box that Orion used to defeat Darkseid in the "Rock of Ages" arc of Grant Morrison's JLA.
  • The Cameo: Several figures bidding in the planetary auction are established criminals from the DC cosmos. The two primary bidders before the Shepherd outbids everyone are the Dominators and Steppenwolf, who both have nothing but pleasant things in store for the human race once they've gotten their hands on the planet Earth.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • There's some lip service to the Doomsday Clock Myth Arc concurrently going on with a Guardian noting to Hal that the Book of Oa has been revised without their consultation or knowledge. The Book displays Doctor Manhattan's symbol to indicate this.
    • Hal's longstanding dislike of Batman is brought up again when Green Arrow jokingly asks if he hooked up with the Blackstars' vampiric leader:
    Hal Jordan: What do I look like, Batman?
  • Cowboy Cop: Jordan has this reputation among the Green Lantern Corps. The Guardians use this to their advantage to send him undercover with the Blackstars.
  • Dead All Along: Chriselon, who was replaced by a shapeshifting Durlan Blackstar spy after his ship crashed at the start of the series.
  • Downer Ending: Season 1 ends with the Qwa-Man rescued, fully healed, and victorious. Mu is revealed to still be alive and coerces a dying Hal to power his Miracle Machine to stop the Anti-Matter War by altering reality so the Blackstars are the universe's premier peacekeeping force instead of the Green Lanterns.
  • Evil Counterpart: The Qwa-Man and this book's version of the Weaponeers are this trope taken to the extreme. Rather than stylish and marketable foils to the Green Lanterns like the Red Lanterns or Sinestro Corps, they are an organisation of unrepentantly ugly and vile superpowered cyborgs whose power batteries are implanted in their chests.
  • Genius Loci: The Blackstars unleash an adult sun-eater on a hapless planet. Jordan and a pair of Lanterns have to hold out for two hours, using their rings to generate an artificial star long enough for one of their fellow corpsmen, who is a sentient star, to arrive and save the day.
  • Genre Throwback: To The '70s Denny O'Neill and Neal Adams Green Lantern/Green Arrow comics and The '80s Vertigo era based on the likes of Alan Moore.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Magic Lantern's oath clearly includes "shit", but it's obscured by Star Sapphire's speech bubble.
  • Glamour Failure: The Shepherd who purchases the Earth from the planetary auction is a spitting image for Zeus or the Old Testament God. This is revealed to be a ruse meant to gain the trust of the human race, as Jordan reveals him to be a monstrous, reptilian creature who feeds off of planets after a thousand years of "ripening." In a subversion of how people typically reveal to this trop, the human race claims they've gotten past judging people for their looks if it means they get to keep their super-powers and tell Jordan they're fine with it.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: A spider pirate accuses Jordan and a fellow corpsman of attempting this. The roles are reversed when Jordan's seemingly beneficial partner begins threatening the pirate and he goes from making threats to offering her food so they can come to an accord.
  • If You're So Evil, Eat This Kitten: The Blackstars test Jordan's loyalty by dictating that he kill a once trusted ally: Adam Strange.
    • Earlier on, Belzebeth forces Hal to fend for himself in the poor district of her homeworld, which results in Hal reluctantly beating up hordes of dangerous (if rightfully indignant) space vampire homeless people
  • In Love with Your Carnage: At the end of Green Lantern: Blackstars Belzebeth says that the reason she wanted to marry Jordon was percisly because of his dangerous feats and the fact that given his moral antithesis to her he would seek to destroy her.
  • Insistent Terminology: Hal insists that he's not a superhero but rather a cop who hangs out with superheroes.
  • Knight Templar: The Blackstars are ruthless offshoots of the Darkstars who have dedicated themselves to eliminating threats more permanently than the by-the-book Green Lanterns.
  • Magma Man: Lantern Volk is a rather literal version of this trope, being an alien with a large, craggy body and a head that's very much just an active volcano spewing a gas cloud that shifts into different facial features depending on his current mood.
  • The Mole: The Guardians send Hal Jordan undercover with the Blackstars to find one of these within the Green Lantern Corps.
  • Mythology Gag: The cover to issue #8 ("SPACE JUNKIES!") is a reference to the classic "Snowbirds Don't Fly" story first appearing in Green Lantern #85, where Green Arrow learns that his sidekick Speedy is an addict.
    • When the Qwa-Man returns to his universe fully restored his uniform echos the look Kyle Rayner had in JLA where he was a weaponer of Qward; this was part of a dream reality created by the Key.
  • Papa Wolf: Superman makes no pretension about the fact that he will wage war against the Blackstars if they ever try to recruit his son.
  • Reality Ensues: Hal lets an alien grow to immense size because he knows that he'll eventually collapse under his own weight because of Square-Cube Law, which he directly namedrops.
  • Retraux: Everything about the book's visuals screams Vertigo Comics of The '80s.
  • The Reveal: The "rebooted" universe Hal willed to life is not actually a rebooted DCU but rather a new version of the once decimated "perfect" Earth-15.
  • Shout-Out: Again, a Grant Morrison work
  • Ship Tease: Between Hal and Pengowirr, who is actually the AI of his power ring. Morrison and Sharp even describe her as Hal's True Love.
  • Significant Anagram: The beautiful green woman Pengowirr is the AI of Jordan's Power Ring.
  • Slavery Is a Special Kind of Evil: Jordan executes a space slaver who stole the planet Earth for illicit auction, mostly for the conditions of the child slaves he uses to power his ship.
  • Space Cop: The Green Lanterns have always been this, but the day-to-day activities of Jordan and his associates are explored in greater detail than before. When the Earth is miniaturized and sold at a planetary slave auction Jordan even puts up police tape around the planet to mark it as an active crime scene.
  • Spell My Name with a "The": Morrison is insistent that the book be referred to as The Green Lantern.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Everywhere Chriselon to Chaselon.
  • Take Care of the Kids: Chriselon tells Jordan to tell his family that he loves them, as he's crashed and thinks he's not long for this world. He's not really Chriselon.
  • Take That!:
  • Undercover Cop Reveal: Jordan's infiltration of the Blackstars is uncovered almost immediately.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Turns out Hal hates spiders and is noticeably sweating bullets while he interrogates the spider pirate. The feeling is mutual as the spider herself finds humans revolting.
  • Writing for the Trade: The title is split into "Seasons" that help to differentiate arcs and storylines.
  • The Worf Effect: Evil Star is maimed in the first issue so the Blackstars can add his power to their own.

     “Season Two” 
  • Reassigned to Antarctica: Well he’s not, but Hal feels so emotionally distant from Earth, his own home planet, that he treats being assigned there like this.

  • Stranger in a Familiar Land:Earlier runs have been building towards this. By the time of New 52, Hals personal life on Earth has pretty much fallen apart to the point that when he’s kicked out of the corps he finds he is this trope. He looses his job and his apartment and he overall feels stranded on Earth to the point that he jumps to the opportunity to work with Sinestro. A lot of stories since then have shown him leaving his responsibilities on earth and his position on the League to John, Simon or Jessica as he feels more at home on Mogo. In the first issue of Season Two, John asks him when he’s coming back to say hi to his friends on Earth and he compares Earth to his childhood backyard when he didn’t know there was a whole world out there. Later on in that issue he shows a frown when he is given an assignment on Earth.


How well does it match the trope?

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