Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Battle of the Origins - Green Lantern Part Three

Today, I'll be looking at the supporting characters of the origins.

Green Lantern Corps

Today’s post will talk about the biggest supporting characters of Hal’s: The Green Lantern Corps (Corps for short). Of course, The Corps is heavily featured in the stories. I mean, this isn’t Alan Scott we’re talking about here. We end up seeing the large scope of the Corps. We get all sorts of aliens as well as characters that are featured in Green Lantern lore. We also get the short, Smurf-like buttheads known as the Guardians, the creators of the rings. So, which origin used the Corps the best?

 In Emerald Dawn, Hal travels to another sector to figure out how this ring works. After he runs into Tomar Re, they head to Oa. There, Hal learns more about Legion, his ring, and the Corps. It’s also where the final battle is held. In Emerald Dawn 2, we get a future ring-wielder in Katma Tui. She played a heavy role on Korugar, Sinestro's homeworld. We also get to see how the Corps works with the Guardians handling things especially when Sinestro goes rogue.

In Secret Origin, Hal is summoned to Oa by the ring to undergo training. He runs into the regulars like Kilowog, Tomar Re, and Salak. After his training, he heads back to Earth. We don’t see any of Oa until the last issue where Hal and Sinestro are summoned in front of the a-holes… I mean, the Guardians. Oh yeah, The Guardians are much worse in this origin and in this universe in general. They had some dumb rules this time around about how officers should only remain in their own sectors.  Just read about what they planned to do toward the end of Johns’ run on Green Lantern. I will say that Abin Sur’s role in the story was a bit more interesting here than in Emerald Dawn.
Oh no! The Smurfs have gotten angry? Run!

I have to go with Emerald Dawn on this one. We just get more of Hal interacting with other Corps members and outer space. We get to see more of the Corps doing their thing and their bosses who aren’t complete pricks. Yes, I know that the Guardians of the Universe are usually pricks, but Secret Origin takes the cake and runs with it into a wall.  I also thought Hal’s training montage in Emerald Dawn was a little funnier than the one in Secret Origin. Overall, Emerald Dawn just did it for me in this area.
Still cracks me up.

Emerald Dawn – 3

Secret Origin – 2

Next up, I’ll be centering on the supporting characters on Earth.

Earth’s Supporting Characters

While Hal’s space exploits are important, his time on Earth is also important. It’s here where he mostly grows in both stories. It’s where we get to explore the man instead of the hero. The Emerald Dawn series has a few Earth-based supporting characters. We have Carol Ferris, Andy, Jack (Hal’s Brother), Willie, and Guy Gardner. Secret Origin also includes Carol Ferris and Hal’s family. It also includes Tom Kalamaku, a mechanic who worked with Hal, and a quick cameo from John Stewart.
Carol, I'm not trying to be a prude, but do you think that outfit's a bit much for a business meeting?

The characters on Earth don’t get a lot to do in Emerald Dawn. Carol’s just the doubting ex-girlfriend who’s annoyed at Hal for most of the origin. She does come to help him in the end when he gets his act together and she even offers him a job at Ferris. We really don’t know much of Andy other than he was also a pilot that got paralyzed because of Hal’s accident. Then, he dies and is never heard of again. His brother, Jack, is really the only one supporting him and he’s one of the only people who know about the ring. Willie is Hal’s second cellmate in Emerald Dawn 2. He also learns of Hal’s identity. He even provides some comic relief there as well. When Hal gets into trouble, Guy serves as his aide. I liked Guy here and it showed me that he wasn’t always such the butthead he’s usually portrayed as.
Now that's the Guy most tend to like.

This is one area where Secret Origin does succeed. While most of them don’t get a lot to do, ones like Carol and Hal’s family actually have stuff here to do. Carol is much more developed here than in Emerald Dawn. Her relationship with Hal is just starting here after some heated arguments about her father who Hal blames for his dad’s death. She also has the job of running the Ferris Company and the problems it goes through.  We also get a nice glimpse into Hal's family life. Jim (Hal’s younger brother) is also the only one in their family who even talk to him. Even though Hal’s antics messed with the family, he stands by his brother even when the oldest brother (Jack) chews Hal out for being a jerk.
Aww... Hal was a jerk, wasn't he?

Overall, I have to give this point to Secret Origin. Emerald Dawn’s characters just didn’t have much to do. It was all about getting Hal into the ring and getting him being cool. Secret Origin spent more time on Earth and made us feel for most of these characters like Carol and Hal’s family.  It also gave us a good look at the guy behind the ring.
Emerald Dawn – 3
Secret Origin –  3

 Next time, I’ll be wrapping this battle up. I'll be looking at the art and the story of the origins.

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