Apr 15, 2017

The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 780: Green Lantern #59, February 1995

https://www.comics.org/issue/56542/

Alright. I know I said I'd blog this today, but it's really a kind of mediocre comic, and that's coming from someone who just loves the Kyle Rayner version of Green Lantern. Or rather, I love him in the JLA comics, but his solo adventures....meh. So I'm going to blow through this one today. I hope you don't mind too much.

Today's featured creator is Darryl Banks. With regard to his Green Lantern work, Mr. Banks is responsible for co-creating Kyle Rayner, and also with much of the design work of the various famed events that come out of the era (Parallax and all that). The comic is well rendered, and honestly the story is kind of a nice little Christmas tale of a lonely Green Lantern on monitor duty for the Titans. He ends up facing a newly-clad Dr. Polaris, bonds (?) with his teammates, and ends up fulfilling every fanboy's early dreams and kisses Donna Troy. All rendered with great facility and flow by Mr. Banks. If we consider the ramifications of the Parallax storyline (if it still has ramifications in the "Rebirth" era), then his contribution is crystal clear. This Green Lantern story, the fall of Hal Jordan, defined the character for most of the 90s, and well into the new millennium, and had lasting and important ramifications throughout the DCU titles. Hall Jordan's turning to evil forced a mistrust and fear into the mainstream superhero community (and their writers) that hadn't really been seen since the early days of the Dark Age with Watchmen and Dark Knight. But this new dark age was inflected by the optimism that such titles as Waid's Flash and Morrison's JLA infused in the time.

Another contribution, though more notorious, is that Mr. Banks was the penciller on Green Lantern for the story that gives us the "Women in Refrigerators" trope. That's a longer conversation, though.

One last thing before moving on: according to Wikipedia, Mr. Banks was responsible for one of the first painted comics, Cyberpunk, published by Innovation comics in the late 80s, and which I reviewed last September. Though I can't actually remember what I said about it. Onward!

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