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Green Lantern: Secret Origin

01/06/2011. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts

Buy Green Lantern: Secret Origin in the USA - or Buy Green Lantern: Secret Origin in the UK

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Green Lantern: Secret Origin by Geoff Johns, Ivan Reis and Oclair Albert. pub: DC Comics. 192 page graphic novel softcover. Price: $14.99 (US), $16.99 (CAN). ISBN: 978-1-4012-3086-9).

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Back in the 1950-60s, the origins of super-heroes were often covered in a few panels so the writers could concentrate on current adventures and not have to clutter the reader with too much background. From the mid-70s on, fleshing out these super-characters had the writers turning to what made them take up their zoot-suits and developing them to give more dimension. The readers hooked into this and it spread out across the titles and companies.

Re-reading this book now, especially as I’ve been catching up on various Green Lantern stories over the past year, I reflected more on how much of a waster Hal Jordan was and amazed he even got his wings in the USAF considering how much or a wild cannon he was. If anything, this carried over a bit into costume wearing tenure but he did develop more responsibility.

Although I reviewed a copy of this book a few months ago while hunting through DC’s back catalogue, they have re-released it again. Obviously to tie-in to a certain ring-welding film that is coming out this summer as it contains an introduction by actor Ryan Reynolds who is playing Hal Jordan and to give seven pages about said film as well. Half of these are photos of the lead characters with the other half telling about the characters. I’ll focus more on this.

The one thing the comicbooks couldn’t do is give much in the way of skin texture to all the aliens beyond the basics which is completely the reverse to what is needed to film. Tomar-Re comes over quite effectively because it is still his basic design with added detail. Kilowog, in comparison, is more superficially like his original comicbook design. Considering that he is totally CGI, I think they could have given a similar exaggeration to his design than compress it like they’ve done. Hopefully, seeing it animated might change that opinion. Sinestro and Hector Hammond look more like the comicbook versions.

For an extras, I wish they had put more photos in from the film, especially as this has to be used to convince comicbook readers who own the original edition to buy a second copy. Ultimately, though, I think this edition is there for new fans who’ve seen the film but even so, more would always have been better.

GF Willmetts

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This book has 72 votes in the sci-fi charts

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