Pretty, Fizzy Paradise

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Friday, March 03, 2006

For the Love of Lanterns:



As I said in my previous post. I love the Lanterns. I love all the Lanterns. Sure, I love some more than others. But I love them all.

Which apparently is rare in certain parts. But you know, you can't like every character.

But Green Lantern fans occasionally seem to get, well, insane about it. And it gets annoying to be figuratively stuck in the middle.

There're the rabid Hal fans who hate Kyle just because he had the *audacity* to replace their favorite. They call him "slacker" and "irresponsible" and find many reasons to hate him. (The second is true, but he grows throughout the series. The first has always been false, as he was the character most seen actually doing work during his GL and JLA runs. And you can't be a slacker and actually live off being a freelance artist. Won't happen.)

I find it funny, because honestly, as character personalities go, Kyle's is about as inoffensive as you can get. He's silly, flighty and immature, but he shows very clear character growth from issue to issue. He's replacing a great character and he knows it, and usually understands when people resent him for this. (Unless you're Ollie, because Ollie's a jackass at the best of times.) He's nice, sweet and determined to live up to the legacy he's had thrust on him. I can see why not every reader *likes* the character, but outright hatred perplexes me. I really can't see anything really "hateable" about him.

Except, you know, for the replacing Hal thing. Which I sympathize with. I'm a Ted Kord fan. I understand. But the character didn't choose to replace Hal, has always respected and admired his predecessor, even when batshit crazy.

Besides, that's over with now anyway. Hal's back! He's Green Lantern again, under a writer that clearly loves him AND Kyle. So let it go! Stop maligning Kyle...unless you've got funny scans of him being stupid like Devon does. Then post, because those are hilarious. Damn it guys, you got your guy back, as awesome as ever! He's reinstated, he's got the main series...you *won*. So *enjoy* it and stop resenting Kyle for existing. (Besides, Hal likes him and nothing you say can change that...:-P Unless you're writing a crappy novel. But otherwise, nope).

And rabid Kyle fans are just as annoying! God. I love Kyle too, but holy hell you people can be insane. Yes, Hal's back. Yes, Kyle's not the frontrunner in the main Green Lantern series...you're gonna have to deal. Besides, he's *got* a series coming up. Written by his own creator! A maxiseries yes, but if it does well, maybe it'll become an ongoing. Kyle was enough to frontrun Green Lantern for a long time after all. (And as much as some of that was name recognition, I don't think that's all that it was, as you have many old GL fans who resented the hell out of him and didn't buy it.) The real draw of Kyle Rayner's character isn't the title "Green Lantern", it's "Kyle Rayner." And honestly, I'd buy his book even if it were called "That lazy, good-for-nothing metrosexual artist guy." He'll do fine!

He's not forgotten, guys. In fact, Rebirth, while bringing back Hal, quite firmly established Kyle as the "better" of the two in terms of incorruptability and will. They didn't kill him, they didn't weaken him to make Hal seem better. And he's Getting His Own Series. Hell, if that doesn't work, he'll just get folded into the Corps. DC knows that the character is popular. The writers themselves very much like the character, so why is there a problem here?

And stop complaining every time Hal shows up. Of *course* he's gonna be in Recharge 5. OA's being ATTACKED! That's his home base, the center of the Corps, and he's a GREEN LANTERN. He's not going to stay behind just because some of his brethren have a legitimate grudge against the whole Parallax thing. This is the guy who's flown headfirst into a sign because he didn't like it. Self-preservation is NOT his strong suit.

And if he shows up in Ion? So? Marz likes Hal, Emerald Twilight aside. Emerald Knights was really good and made both Ragnell and me take notice of Hal in the first place. He's guested in Kyle's run many many times, as Parallax, he's beat him to a pulp and stole the ring, as the Spectre, he's been a welcome mentor/advisor and listening ear...He's never upstaged Kyle (if there was any upstaging, it was *by* Kyle in Rebirth), and I doubt he's in any danger of upstaging him in Ion. Kyle's a character that benefits a lot from crossovers anyway and always shines when he's interacting with others.

And Hal's pretty awesome. Seriously. As human as Kyle in his own way. Just a guy who's never quite learned to deal with the bad stuff as it happens. He's dumb and an utter klutz, and he's got almost no real interpersonal skills that don't involve getting laid. He's also brave, determined, charismatic. He's a guy constantly trying to deal with larger-than-life reputations, whether as the "Greatest Green Lantern Ever!" or "Parallax-who-tried-to-rewrite-the-Universe" and it's interesting to see, because he really is a relatively normal guy. And he hits his head on stuff and gets mind controlled, and that's just funny.

Anyway, I understand the frustration of having your favorite booted off of his title. But honestly, this might be the best thing to happen to Kyle. He can be something beyond just one of a string of Green Lanterns. And if it doesn't work, well, both John and Guy tried other identities before coming back to the fold, so he can too. You've NOTHING to be worried or defensive about! Relax!

This is the BEST time to be a Lantern fan. Hal's back and going strong, Kyle's got a maxiseries coming, Guy's fronting GLC with old favorites like Kilowog and Salakk...We all should be happy!* Celebrate! :-)

*unless John's your favorite...then you're SOL. :-P Sorry.

14 Comments:

  • At March 03, 2006 6:31 AM, Blogger Ragnell said…

    Actually, when you give them a chance, Kyle and Hal work really well together in a shared spotlight.

     
  • At March 03, 2006 7:58 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    *nod* They really do. Mutual respect, talents that balance each other. Hal's experience, Kyle's creativity...

    I look forward to every crossover.

     
  • At March 03, 2006 12:44 PM, Anonymous green means wheelpower said…

    love that panel. Guy certianly knows how to memorialize doesn't he!
    But you for got to menton Alan in JSA, and he's such a snazy dresser :-)

    the good thing about the GL's is they cover the whole people spectarum, each unique but all GLs everyone finds one they like.

    Ragnell: I liked the Guy/John interation in Rebirth myself

     
  • At March 03, 2006 1:38 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    :-) I didn't mention Alan because I haven't been ticked off by any Alan fans lately. Besides, everyone likes Alan.

    Whereas going to message boards and seeing STILL endless "He replaced my favorite and thus sucks!!1!", "How dare Hal show up to defend Oa!", and so on and so forth gets a tad annoying.

    They've every right to express their opinions of course, but I'm allowed to express mine back. :-) And mine is: "Get *over* it!"

    :-)

     
  • At March 03, 2006 1:49 PM, Anonymous green means wheelpower said…

    True :-)

     
  • At March 03, 2006 5:41 PM, Blogger CalvinPitt said…

    I'm a little surprised that since Hal and Kyle are both alive and kicking that they can't let it go. I admit to being one of those Hal-haters, but that was mostly because I figured Rebirth was going to swap Kyle for Hal. When I see Kyle is still breathing, most of my enimity for Hal went away. I'm not a fan, but I'm fine with him being there.

     
  • At March 03, 2006 6:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Well, John has been pretty busy. Wasn't he in the JLA for the past couple of years when Kyle has been off in space, and he appeared in more JLA classified arcs than any other Lantern so far...(even though that's just a grand total of 4 arcs, but, he was in half of them!)

     
  • At March 03, 2006 6:39 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    calvin: yeah, I get that sort of thing. No one's a fan of every character after all. But gosh, folks should let it go. We *all* can be happy. :-)

    anon: Yep, but he's not lined up for anything now, near as I can tell. Hopefully he'll get more of a role in GL though. :-)

     
  • At March 05, 2006 8:28 PM, Anonymous AnthonyF said…

    I love all of the Earth Lanterns too. I've often tried and failed to choose a favorite. Excellent post, but I kept getting distracted - I love that panel! Where is it from?

     
  • At March 05, 2006 8:31 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    Anthony: I agree. And thanks!

    The panel's from the 1998 Secret Files and Origins for Green Lantern. A nice issue. :-)

     
  • At March 06, 2006 2:29 PM, Anonymous AnthonyF said…

    Excellent. That's already on my list of things to seek out.

    Thanks.

     
  • At March 07, 2006 12:58 AM, Blogger JP said…

    I've felt this was about the Lanterns, too, and it's got me thinking - leaving aside the whole messy Azrael fiasco and the death-of-Supes thing, d'you think some other classic superheroes could benefit from having succesors and team members? Of course, Batman has the whole Bat Clan, but what if Grayson operated as the Batman of Bludhaven, rather than Nightwing? What if Wonder Woman appointed a few other Amazons to be the Wonder Women of different zones on theplanet, or with different jursdictions - Wonder Women Earth, Sea and Sky, as it were?

    It would be different from another team book like JLA because we'd see the core ideals or qualities of a particular superhero being extrapolated, caried forward by different people, who are chosen because they have a certain basic trait in common.

    Superman would be the toughest to deal with like this, but since he's clone-able, and DC seems to have bypassed away from Bryne's moratorium on any more Kryptonians, amybe something could be done, although that's the character I'm least interested in seeing the group idea applied to.

     
  • At March 07, 2006 1:05 AM, Blogger kalinara said…

    JP: It's an interesting thought, but honestly, I don't think it works for me. A lot of what makes Green Lantern fascinating to me is that it's *not* a code name. Not like "Superman", "Batman", "Wonder Woman".

    In the case of Clark, Bruce and Diana, those titles are part of who they are. They're *names*.

    "Green Lantern" is a job title. Even Kyle, when he was the only one, was better identified as "Kyle Rayner" than "the Green Lantern."

    The Flash also is more of a title than a name, I think. In the case of the Flashes, they work because they're living symbols of time passing. Jay as the past, Barry (pre-Crisis)/Wally (post-Crisis) as the present, and Wally (pre-Crisis)/Bart (post-Crisis) as the future. In a sense, the Flashes are like the three/four stages of man in old riddles. Which is why the name can be shared.

    It's weirdly irrational, but I can't see Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman...heck, even the Blue Beetle, Booster Gold, Green Arrow...as job titles. They're *names*.

     
  • At March 09, 2006 6:57 AM, Blogger JP said…

    Acutally the job title/code name point makes absolute sense.

    Still, I'd like to at least see how a Batmen(and women) Worldwide chain would work! See, the GLs are a police force, right? Perhaps, inspired by them Bruce cld start a planetary version...

    It *could* work.

     

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