Today’s Super Comics — Green Lantern #101-106 & Green Arrow #136 (1998)

green_lantern_vol_3_101Nearly fifteen years before X-Men brought its Silver Age versions into the much darker present, Green Lantern did the same. But not for an ongoing series, just a mere seven issues.

Following the events of the anniversary issue team-up in Green Lantern #100, a young Hal Jordan finds himself stranded ten years into his future, which was DC’s present. He learns his home city has been destroyed, he’s destined to become a villain and eventually die, and some fellow JLA teammates are dead. Kind of a lot to take in.

It’s a fascinating situation to put a superhero in. And it’s far more compelling to bring a character from the past to the present, rather than from the present to a possible future. The past and present are already established and fleshed out over years’ worth of stories, whereas we’re less familiar with a newly introduced future scenario that might never come to pass anyway.

The real treat, though, particularly when I read it in 1998, was seeing Hal Jordan back in action as a heroic Green Lantern at a time when he was out of the picture. I would’ve been okay with him sticking around longer. This storyline could have lasted a full year without feeling forced, and it would have given us more time to see Hal reconnect more with old friends and deal with more modern threats (this was shortly before the trend of decompressed storytelling in comics).

We at least get a nice little team-up with the then-current Green Arrow (Connor Hawke, as Oliver Queen was also dead then), as well as a battle between young Hal and older, well-intentioned villainous Hal (calling himself Parallax).

Though I would have enjoyed more, these seven issues remain a fun time on their own.

Writer: Ron Marz (Green Arrow issue: Chuck Dixon)

Pencilers: Jeff Johnson, Scott Eaton, Paul Pelletier (GA issue: Dougie Braithwaite)

Publisher: DC Comics

How to Read It: back issues; Comixology; Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (TPB)

Appropriate For: ages 10 and up

Today’s Super Comic — Green Lantern #100 (1998)

green_lantern_vol_3_100Want a team-up involving a dead character? Time-travel can facilitate that!

Green Lantern #100 brings together then-new GL Kyle Rayner and then-deceased GL Hal Jordan by sending Kyle roughly a decade into the past, to the Green Lantern Corps’ glory days. Kyle, his era’s sole and randomly chosen GL, serves as the reader’s viewpoint into this wondrous sci-fi world of fearless heroes as the Corps battles Sinestro at his old-school villainous best.

I started reading comics early enough that Hal was and is “my” Green Lantern, but Kyle was the reigning GL throughout my adolescence. Ron Marz wrote a lot of good Kyle stories, but seeing Hal back in action was always a treat. So this was the perfect way to celebrate the 100-issue milestone and show us how fun comics can be.

And the cliffhanger’s even better.

Writer: Ron Marz

Penciler: Darryl Banks

Inker: Terry Austin

Publisher: DC Comics

How to Read It: back issues; Comixology; included in Green Lantern: Emerald Knights (TPB)

Appropriate For: ages 10 and up