Archive for March, 2016
What could be big enough to reunite Jim, Dan, Chad and Mark? Well, DC Rebirth, of course! The former and current hosts discuss their thoughts on what Rebirth means to Green Lantern and the DCU as a whole. Throw in a healthy debate about Jessica Cruz’s role in the DC cinematic universe, and you have one great episode! Be sure to chime in on our voice-mail at 708-LANTERN to give us YOUR thoughts on Rebirth!
Download the episode HERE!
Darkstars issue #4 written by Michael Jan Friedman, penciled by Travis Charest, inked by Scott Hanna, lettered by Bob Pinaha, and colored by Julianna Ferriter. The Editor to the Stars was Brian Augustyn and the Stellar Consultant was Robert Greenberger. The cover date is January 1993 and according to Mikes Amazing World of Comics the release date was December 1, 1992.
“Star Wars” begins with Evil Star and the starlings attacking the city in hopes of luring Green Lantern out. The police arrive to stop the mayhem but to no avail. Flint attacks one of the starlings after some officers are killed. Colos and Mo arrive to face Evil Star. All Evil Star cares about is that the two are not Green Lanterns. Evil Star attacks Colos when he attempts to convince Evil Star to surrender. Evil Star orders the starlings to attack the Darkstars as they are not worthy of his attention. Suddenly Evil Star has a crisis of conscience and questions what is it that he is doing and leaves to give himself some time to think leaving the Darkstars confused. Colos orders his ship’s computer to analyze what just happened in hopes of gaining some important Intel.
Now we catch up with Carla. She is leaving a taxi but is soon kidnapped by two goons.
The police in attempting to learn about what is going on are attacked by Evil Star who is just looking for some time to think. The Darkstars continue their pursuit of Evil Star and his starlings. They determine that the starlings are headed for an abandoned junkyard which gives Colos time to get the data he requested from his ship’s computers. Flint however goes rogue and attacks Evil Star. He is attacked and grabbed by the starlings, prompting Colos to intervene. He attacks and kills the starlings but is attacked himself by Evil Star. The Darkstars withdraw but are pursued themselves by the starlings. Colos surmises that the starlings are just trying to scare the Darkstars off and when they fly off the starlings stop their pursuit.
Colos scolds Flint for his reckless actions. Colos declares himself as the one who calls the shots and Flint is not to go off on his own again. Flint agrees saying that he got carried away. After this the three settle down to watch and wait.
We get an interlude in deep space. We see the Controllers for the first time. They approach Administrator Jeddigar in order to answer some questions. They are contemplating the distribution of Darkstar forces in sectors two through six. Their concern is that they are venturing too far from the sphere of the Controllers concerns. The administrator just says that this was not a question. The Controllers admit that they are not accustomed to verbal communication. The administrator then responds by saying the the sphere of influence the Controllers are talking about is not far enough to adequately protect them. The Controllers then question Colos’s posting on Earth saying that they do not see the relevance of this position. Jeddigar answers that Earth is extremely relevant. Earth has been tagged by an organization in Sector Four. The Controllers insist that Colos should then be replaced as he has had problems in the past so he should not be in such and important post. Jeddigar announces that he alone makes the decisions. Jeddigar ends the conversation saying that he has a staff meeting. The Controllers on leaving complain about the administrators arrogance. They decide to wait for a confrontation but admit that sometime they must confront and remove Jeddigar because in time he can become a greater threat to the Controllers.
Back on Earth, Carla slowly wakes up from the chloroform and discovers that she has been kidnapped by Pappas. Pappas kidnapped her because in his mind, she is still his lawyer and he just wants Carla to hear him out. He hopes to buy Carla’s services as his lawyer. Carla answers by throwing a glass of wine at Pappas. Pappas says that she will be sorry for her actions.
Back at the junkyard Evil Star and the starlings take off prompting the Darkstars to prepare to engage. Colos finally gets the information he ordered from his ship’s computer. It seems that the brainwave restrictor used on Evil Star was a prototype that actually spurred unconscious brain activity. The restrictor allowed Evil Star to unknowingly awaken the starlings to steal the Star-Brand. This seems to answer why Evil Star was running from the starlings in the beginning as well as his current actions. Consciously he is terrified of the starlings and as a result he is experiencing an internal struggle for control. Colos leads the Darkstars to follow Evil Star but only to distract him from a narrowcast from his ship’s computer using the same frequency of the brainwave restrictor. Colos plans to flood Evil Star’s mind with six million reminders of his genocidal crimes. This brings the internal conflict in Evil Star’s mind to a head and makes Evil Star to fall into unconsciousness. Colos removes the Star-Brand and the starlings go inactive. Colos now plans to melt a dense metal down with their masers and mold it around the starlings to prevent Evil Star’s mental commands from reaching them.
We now find Carla in Pappas’s limousine. He threatens that if she does not shut up, he will do worse to her that Pedro Montoya, the man Pappas was accused of killing. If she does shut up she will live and maybe even like where she is going.
It was good to see Colos use intelligence in defeating Evil Star. Instead of just fighting him which he learns is next to impossible, he formulates a strategy based on the Intel he was able to discover about Evil Star and win the day with this strategy.
We get our first look at the Controllers. They are pink just like the Guardians of the Universe but instead of being short like I am used to seeing the Guardians,they are normal sized. They appear to have turned over complete command to this Administrator Jeddigar. A man that they even admit to not liking or trusting. We still see that the Controllers are more concerned about their own welfare than anything else and the Darkstars were created not to police the Universe but instead protect the Controllers and their interests. I personally do not see much to like about this people.
We do get more Carla in this issue and her arc is the continuing story to be looked at next issue. I give this issue a 4 out of 5 Power Rings. It was intelligent and action packed at the same time.
Alright, that’s enough. No more.
Jessica Cruz WILL NOT be the Green Lantern of the ‘Justice League‘ film. Nor will she be the Green Lantern of the ‘Green Lantern Corps‘ film currently slated for release in 2020.
In October of 2014, someone at Newsarama thought it would be fun to speculate about WHICH Green Lantern would feature in the ‘Justice League’ and ‘Green Lantern’ movies of the DC cinematic universe. Their conclusion? That Jessica Cruz is the ideal choice, going so far as to say, “if Vegas were to give us some good odds on who will be the lead movie GL, [our] money wouldn’t be on [Hal, Guy, John, Kyle, or Simon]”.
Speculation is all well and good. Editorial pieces, of which I am a personal fan (so long as you present them as such), are fun and thought provoking. And it’s a theory that’s catching on…
And now it’s resurfaced yet again with the reveal on Weds March 23rd that Jessica Cruz would be trading in her Power Ring power ring for a REAL Green Lantern power ring in the forthcoming Rebirth initiative from DC Comics.
…and it’s WRONG.
Why? Well, since this all sprung directly from Newsarama, it’s only logical to go point for point with their point by point.
1.) She of course is a current Justice League member and again was created by Johns, at exactly the time DCE and Warner Bros. seemed to be assembling their master movie plan and starting production on Dawn of Justice.
It sounds like you’re taking the “there’s no such thing as coincidence, it’s all fate” philosophical approach to life a little TOO far. Geoff Johns IS the Chief Creative Officer at DC. Geoff created Jessica Cruz. Geoff is involved with the direction of DC characters OUTSIDE of just the comics. Geoff isn’t THE decision maker though. If he was, ‘Green Lantern‘ wouldn’t have turned out to be the steaming pile it ended up. Perhaps a DIFFERENT steaming pile, but definitely not what we ended up with. All sources put that folly squarely on the Warner Studio muckety mucks. And maybe they’ve learned to loosen their grip and hand it off to their directors vision more (aka Snyder’s more creatively controlled vision we’re currently getting). But as much power and influence as Geoff has rightfully EARNED, he’s not THAT influential.
2.) Did we mention Johns created her himself, again, just a short time after already creating another new young Green Lantern character that serves to add diversity to the GL Corps and the Justice Leagues – Simon Baz (he even set Baz up as her mentor just before leaving the Green Lantern comic). It would not be a stretch of the imagination to conclude Jessica was created to fill a specific role Simon does not (we’re getting there in a sec), since Johns could have easily slotted him into the comic book League if he chose.
See our response to point 1. Also yes, Johns DID create her and Simon, but you’re forgetting the fact that Johns ADORES the silver age incarnations of characters (IE: Barry and Hal). So he may have created Simon and Jessica, but he’s only spent so much time with them. Prior to that? He spent 5+ years DELIBERATELY building Hal (and the GLC) back into the DCU. So which trumps which?
Additionally, you’re assuming the current comics have the same influence on the feature films that they have on the direct to DVD animated features. The last time DC films took a page directly from the current comics, we got the 2011 ‘Green Lantern‘. Granted the material it was ROOTED in was amazing, but the interpretation was obviously off.
Then DC went with the “no more old story interpretations in our direct to DVD animated features, only new material”. Which was fine. But have you noticed that decision loosening its grip lately? (the forthcoming ‘Killing Joke’ anyone?) Bottom line? The big screen films draw from more time tested stories and versions of the DCU, not the recent stuff. And have you SEEN the numbers for the comics lately? Even the popular stories? Those numbers, even the best ones, aren’t big enough “proof” to convince a studio to invest their millions of dollars and man hours.
3.) Since we can safely assume the movie League line-up is Batman, Superman, The Flash, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern and Cyborg, we can conclude the movies are following at least the basic roadmap of the New 52 line-up Johns created.
Yes. The BASIC road map. Meaning A GL. But wait. Was GL in BVSDOJ? No? When’s he showing up? Not until probably Justice League 2? (or end of JL 1?) So then what does “Unite the Seven” mean? Let’s count it out. We’ve got: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Cyborg, Aquaman….hmmm, that’s six. And no GL for awhile. Who’s left? Ah yes, the only other person getting a solo movie who HASN’T been mentioned yet… SHAZAM!
And their last two points together (since they’re essentially making the same point)…
4.) Cyborg basically supplanted Martian Manhunter (as well as other potential characters with rich Justice League history like Green Arrow, Hawkman, and the Atom), no doubt in part to inject some youth and technical weaponry into the line-up, but to also provide some yes … diversity.
5.) Finally, that seven character League … pardon us for saying so … is/was a bit of a sausage fest.
And here we go. The only REAL reason they’re pushing for Jessica in the first place. She’s a female of Latin origin. Gender and race.
I won’t lie for the sake of my own argument. It’s completely true. The big two (and others) are definitely pushing for more equal representation in their characters across all media. Equal time given regardless of gender, race, religious background, or sexual orientation. The problem with assuming this will play a large enough role to shove aside the GL boys in favor of Jessica Cruz is that there is no historical precedent for it. Heimdall was interpreted as a black character. But Heimdall isn’t a main character in Thor. Nick Fury was interpreted as a black character. Nick Fury isn’t so popular he offsets the cast of the actual heroes in Avengers. And so on and so forth.
As for our main characters? Iron Man? Tony Stark. Cap? Steve Rodgers frozen in ice. Thor? From Asgard. Black Widow? Natasha. Hulk? Bruce Banner. Superman? Clark Kent. Batman? Bruce Wayne. Wonder Woman? Diana Prince. Flash? Barry Allen. Green Arrow? Oliver Queen. Daredevil? Blind Matt Murdock. Supergirl? Kara Danvers. Want me to keep going? Because I can move on to the supporting characters like Patsy Walker, Laurel Lance, Ronnie Raymond, Carter Hall, Ray Palmer, Frank Castle, Electra, Luke Cage, Rip Hunter, and more and more.
Heck, even Hulk (the Ang Lee version) didn’t mean Bruce Banner got tossed out with the bathwater because of the toxic reputation of the film. Or ignored all together. They kept the classic interpretation, gave it some breathing room, and kept on.
Bottom line? There’s NO EVIDENCE that film makers (in TV or film) believe that equal representation trumps the classic, time tested, and mostly RECOGNIZABLE/marketable versions of main (or supporting) characters.
Not to mention the fact that, while studios in charge of superhero films don’t SOLELY cater their interpretations to the comic fan base, making the GL Jessica Cruz would completely and utterly alienate most every current fan of the mythos. And the ones NOT up to date on who she is but had experiences with GL in the past? Would be utterly confused. So while they may not make these films solely for us, we’re a big enough part of the audience that they at least CONSIDER our reaction. And if we’re a big enough group to consider, we’re a big enough group to impact the bottom line in some, even small, way.
And that’s it.
I’ll agree, WHERE POSSIBLE and still PROFITABLE, DC/Warner is MOST LIKELY to bring diversity in the DC cinematic universe with the Green Lantern characters (think the JL/JLU animated series). But when someone like John Stewart is available, characters like Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz don’t really stand a chance, no matter who created them.
I won’t deny it’s possible we might see them in a film (most likely GLC in 2020) but they won’t be the main GL’s. Period. Characters recognizable to both comic fans, and more importantly, the general movie going audience have the highest potential for profitability in both ticket sales AND merchandising. Because despite the push for diversity, studios are still profit driven entities. Jessica Cruz still doesn’t even have an action figure. Or a supporting role in the main Green Lantern title or even the ancillary titles (that could obviously change after Rebirth, though doubtful with a rumored title like ‘Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps’ in the works).
It’s going to be Hal Jordan or John Stewart. Or both. But it’s not going to be Jessica Cruz.
So thank your lucky stars Vegas doesn’t accept those types of bets.
(PS: The news that Jessica Cruz & Simon Baz will be featured heavily in both the Justice League title by Bryan Hitch and the Green Lantern title by Sam Humphries does NOT change these opinions.)
March books are upon us! Chad and Mark glide through the Edge of Oblivion before almost drowning in the despair of Telos and Green Lantern. Luckily, the boys are saved by the warm glow of this month’s Sinestro! The big question is do both hosts survive their respective rants on sloppy editing and character misuse? There’s even time for LISTENER FEEDBACK despite the tirades! Be sure to email us or sound off on our voice-mail at 708-LANTERN!
Download the episode HERE!
Hal Jordan’s Legend as “Earth’s Greatest Green Lantern” is captured in this limited edition bust and ring prop. Limited to only 2000 pieces, this great piece is part of the four bust series that also featured Alan Scott, Hal Jordan and Sinestro!
Our coverage of Green Lantern Corps Quarterly CONTINUES! Listen in to the FIFTH of EIGHT episodes spread out over 2 years as we bring forth such notable stories as: An obscure Green Lantern with a cyclical death complex, Alan VS sudden youth and sexy illusions, the answer to the question on everyone’s lips “Whatever happened to Itty?!”, and the ultimate finale to the G’Nort stories! All of this and Captain America – Civil War trailer talk! Be sure to chime in on our voice-mail at 708-LANTERN!
Download the episode HERE!
It’s time for February books! Chad and Mark cover the three monthly Lantern books, with some Telos and Harley Quinn thrown in as a bonus! This episode includes at least two Mark mini-rants, as we build towards his coming complete meltdown in response to Green Lantern #50. Nothing will ever be the same again! All of this and LISTENER FEEDBACK! Be sure to chime in on our voice-mail at 708-LANTERN!
Download the episode HERE!
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Issue three of Darkstars: “A Little Help From My Friends” written by Michael Jan Friedman, penciled by Larry Stroman, inked by Scott Hanna, lettered by Bob Pinaha, colored by Juliana Ferriter, and edited Brian Augustine. This issue is cover dated December 1992 and according to Mike’s Amazing world of DC Comics, this issue was released on November 3, 1992.
We open in the kitchen of attorney Carla White. She has the news on and we hear a report about the Allen Pharmaceutical drug bust of the night before. Police say that Allen Pharmaceuticals have been the headquarters for the Loco drug ring. Unconfirmed sources even identify the involvement of aliens. This gets Carla’s attention. The report includes that Frank Pappas, Carla’s client has been charged with directing and financing the operation. This surprises Carla. Carla leaves the room as a report that one of the aliens was on the humans side and that alien’s name was Darkstar.
We now go to an interlude in space. We catch up with the fleeing being from the previous issue. He has come across a Darkstar cruiser. The being reports that he is being pursued by hostile entities. The captain of the Darkstar ship questions the assertion that the beings are hostile. While this discussion continues the crew of the Darkstar ship discovers that the pursuers are traveling without a ship. The pursuers fire on and destroy the Darkstar ship. The pursued being continues his run but he remembers another hope a green warrior who comes from a green world.
In orbit of earth, Colos, Flint and Mo discuss Colos’s orders. Colos gives his backstory including the first mention of a race called the Controllers that set up the Darkstars. Colos gives a backstory of the Controllers. Their first theory was that they could insulate their own world from the scum of the universe. After about a thousand years, they discovered that they could not be just reactive. They decided that they had to meet the problems at the source and to do that, they created the Darkstars. This way the Controllers could still keep their hands clean while they send agents to do the hard stuff. Flint notices that this is not an endorsement of the Controllers. Colos just says that it is not. Colos became a Darkstar for himself and what he could accomplish. Colos admits that he doesn’t tell this story to anybody, he has plans for Flint and Mo. He is allowed to pick two local deputies to help him in his patrols. He offers these positions to Flint and Mo.
Prigatz contacts Colos. He has another assignment. He is to hunt down an escaped prisoner only known as G-111 but he calls himself Evil Star. Evil Star was originally apprehended by the Green Lanterns on earth. Evil Star is returning to earth for a rematch. Since the Green Lantern Corp is in disarray, the Darkstars need to deal with Evil Star.
We learn that G-111 was denouncing his identity as Evil Star. The problem though rests with his henchmen, the Starlings. The Starlings were activated and they stole the Star-Brand which gives Evil Star his powers. When the Starlings arrived at the prison, G-111 stole a cruiser and escaped during the ensuing chaos. We see that G-111 is the being we have been visiting the previous issues. Prigatz tells Colos about the destruction of the Darkstar ship. Colos has two hours and forty-four minutes to outfit and train his new deputies before Evil Star arrives.
Carla walks into her father’s office. This is the law firm that Carla works for. She questions her father on Frank Pappas. The father heard rumors about Pappas but it is not their job to incriminate their clients. Carla questions the decision to defend Pappas in the first place. Carla quits her position just as Pappas calls her for legal advice. She just tells him to drop dead and walks out of the office.
Pappas is meeting with some aliens. The aliens question Pappas about the events of the previous night including the Darkstar raid. Pappas says that he needs a new lawyer as his old one has quit. The aliens now decide to minimize their dealings with Pappas in the future. They are throwing him to the dogs.
The three Darkstars are in training in the skies of Dallas when they see G-111 ship and the Starlings enter the atmosphere. The Darkstars move to intercept but are attacked by the Starlings.
G-111 realizes that Green Lantern is not on earth as he would have tried to stop him by now and the Darkstars proved to be no match for the Starlings. G-111 looks at the Star-Brand and says that he could jettison it before it takes control of him. But that power must not be wasted, it must be exercised, he must become Evil Star and we see Evil Star in the last full page spread.
Okay, I see why I should care about this blond alien running from these strange pursuers without ships. I did not know that this guy is Evil Star. I admit I do not know much about Evil Star but I find it interesting that the Star-Brand actually appears to be the the evil influence, however G-111 did seem to don the mantle of the Star-Brand willingly in the end.
This was not a good showing for the Darkstars power. One Green Lantern was able to defeat Evil Star and his Starlings but three Darkstars could not take the Starlings. It was interesting to hear that a Darkstar could deputized two locals to join his patrol. I know Mo is homeless from Issue 1 but Flint is a police lieutenant. Does this mean that Flint is no longer a cop but has been promoted to space cop?
I do like the scenes with Carla in them. She really is naïve in her understanding of Pappas but it is good to see that when she finds the truth, she acts on it. The only thing is that it appears her story arc is leaving the Darkstars as her only connection to the main ongoing plot was Pappas and now she has quit the firm and is not longer representing Pappas. I hope to see more of this character in the future.
Now for the Controllers. This is the first time we hear about the Controllers in this series. What we hear is not very positive. They seem to be selfish really only interested in their own safety and security. It is only after a thousand years that they decided to expand their reach but instead of going out themselves, they deputized other aliens to die for them.
Colos, the main Darkstar we see does get a positive characterization. He is altruistic and really wants to do good. He is not a Darkstar for the Controllers but for himself. It make me wonder about the others. Are they as altruistic as Colos or are they Darkstars because of the Controllers.
This was another enjoyable issue and I want to start grading these issues like other podcasts and reviews so I will use a scale of 1-5 power rings. I give this issue a 4 out of 5 power rings. See you next issue.
Chad returns with another episode featuring the historic Green Lantern/Green Arrow run from legendary creators Dennis O’Neil and Neal Adams! This time around we’re talking Harpies, Gorgons, Amazons, Wizards, Aliens, and other dimensions! The common thread? Feminism! Yeah, we’re confused too. Listen in! Please leave a voicemail at 708-LANTERN!
Music – ‘Everything Has Its Point’ by Rival Schools.
Download the episode HERE!