The character may have been around in various incarnations for over sixty years, but it's taken the advent of the new Mortal Kombat Vs. DC Universe game to finally bring the Green Lantern rivalry to a head. Fans are freaking out over which GL shines brightest. Does Hal Jordan automatically take the title of greatest ring slinger because all of the characters in the comic tell him how awesome he is, or can John Stewart claim an advantage thanks to his Cartoon Network appearances? And what about the original GL and his unexpected fear of wood? And, no, that's not a euphemism. Let's take a look at the pros and cons of the Green Lanterns vying for the title of shiniest.
The argument broke out initially over the question of which Green Lantern would be appearing in the upcoming fight game, and almost immediately, the fanboy gloves were off:
[Original Lantern] Alan Scott is a no in my books, unless they want to include members of the JSA... The real question is whether or not we will see Hal Jordan or John Stewart. Personally I feel John Stewart is the "Barack Obama" choice for this game, especially with his less than stellar track record (Gee, did I blow up that planet?). Kyle Rayner really hasn't been GL in a while since he took up the role as Ion (Oa's GL super weapon), so I am willing to count him out.
Man, are people still holding John's accidentally blowing up a planet against him? It's not like he was possessed by a giant yellow fear bug that caused him to go on a murderous killing spree like Hal or anything... Talk about a tough audience.
Picking the best Green Lantern is tough, because they all have pretty much the same powers and abilities. As a result, it all comes down to personality and whether or not you have a jet pilot fetish. Here's our rundown of the five top GLs for you to choose from:
Pros: Called "the greatest Green Lantern of them all" by his fellow members of the Green Lantern Corps, Silver Age GL Hal Jordan was a founder member of the Justice League of America and helped save the universe during the Crisis of Infinite Earths after being chosen as one of the few fearless men on the planet.
Cons: Hal was also responsible for the destruction of the Corps twice; once by executing villain Sinestro (Don't worry, he got better) and tripping a failsafe that depowered all the heroes, and the second time by becoming possessed by Parallax, the insect god of fear and killing everyone around him. He's kind of a cosmic jinx that way.
Pros: He's the Green Lantern that all the kids know, thanks to his role in Cartoon Network's Justice League and Justice League Unlimited series, although his hard-ass-marine portrayal there is at odds with his thoughtful architect comic persona. In the '90s, Stewart got his own series, Mosaic, which saw him have to build an international community made up of different alien races on an accidental patchwork planet; his reward for doing so successfully? Temporary godlike powers. Which was nice.
Cons: Well, that whole "being accidentally responsible for the destruction of a planet and its entire population" thing doesn't really go away that quickly. Also, superpowered alien cop architects? Who'd buy that?
Pros: The original Green Lantern, Scott got his power not from little blue aliens, but from a magical lantern (Hence the name). Similarly, his weakness isn't the color yellow, but anything made of wood, meaning that he's particularly powerless against pornstars.
Cons: Well, he's been around since the 1940s, so there's that whole age thing going on, and who wants a superhero who can be beaten by a well-placed tree branch on the head, no matter how experienced he may be?
Pros: After Hal Jordan got himself possessed and destroyed the Corps, freelance illustrator Rayner became the last Green Lantern in the universe, fighting Hal and keeping the name alive until the powers that be decided to hit the magical reset button.
Cons: Post-magical reset button, Rayner's been more than a little superfluous to requirements, and has been thrown around DC's publishing line (including an unfortunate stint in weekly book Countdown where he did very little for weeks on end). Is there a place out there for a replacement with little personality when the main man comes back?
Pros: Former football star and current arrogant asshole, Gardner is one of the more complex and realistic superheroes in mainstream comics, capable of being a dick or shameless, stupid, romantic as needs be.
Cons: Like I said, "former football star and current arrogant asshole." What didn't you understand about that? In lesser hands, the character can turn into a one-note joke, and as well as know, the ranks of comic writers is pretty much filled with lesser hands, not to mention other body parts.
Of course, there are many, many other Green Lanterns for the game makers to choose from - Mogo, the planet Green Lantern, for one. Personally, I'm hoping that the one that shows up in Mortal Kombat Vs. DC Universe is Ch'P, the chipmunk Green Lantern who died after getting run over by a truck. And, no, I'm not joking.
Green Lantern? [Midway Boards]