If Hal Jordan Isn’t Ryan Reynolds, Who Is He?!
So ya wanna know who Hal Jordan is huh?
Listen kid, I don’t go around just revealin’ details about people’s secret identities left and right. That there is sensuhtive infahmation. What would Ryan Reynolds say if everyone knew that he was Green Lantern once? Shit, did I say that out loud?
Whatever. Point is, I’m not revealin’ nothin’ about the new Green Lantern core. Not even if you look at me like a sad little Husky dog left out in a snowstorm. Like the way you’re looking at me now …
ALRIGHT FINE I’LL TELL YOU.
Where did Hal Jordan come from anyway?
Hal Jordan was born in Coast City and raised in a Jewish/Catholic household so I can’t even IMAGINE the guilt that this man must experience on a daily basis. As a young boy, he watched his father die in a plane crash. Rather than swearing off planes for good like any normal person, he decided that he would come a military test pilot to face his fear. I guess his mother wouldn’t pay for his therapy?
After a stint in the armed forces, Hal got kicked out for assaulting a commanding officer. Considering most of those guys were dicks, I don’t blame him. He was demoted to an engineer, and was stuck giving planes tune-ups until one fateful day when he was abducted by ALIENS. Well, one alien. The nice kind and not the “probe your nethers” kind.
This alien, named Abin Sur, was a Green Lantern, a member of a corps of intergalactic narcs who protect the universe from the “criminal element”. The bad news is that Abin Sur was dying and wanted Hal Jordan to replace him. Not wanting to waste the rest of his days taking orders from assholes on Earth, Jordan accepted, and then immediately started taking orders from assholes in space. Well, one asshole: Green Lantern officer Thaal Sinestro.
Does that name ring any bells? Thought so! Sinestro is the arch nemesis of Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern corps. In fact, he’s so anti-Green Laterns that he actually established his OWN organization, the Sinestro Corps. Sinestro and his cronies use the power of fear in order to carry out their nefarious plans. But to explain how that works, first I gotta explain how Hal Jordan’s Green Lantern powers work. Through the power of will.
No will as in the abstract concept that drives human beings, I’m not actually talking about some guy named Will. Jesus they’ll let anyone graduate these days.
Okay, so when Hal Jordan got to the Green Lantern headquarters, he was given a little green ring. This ring allows him to manifest his will into physical shapes. What kind of shapes? Any kind you can imagine!
Hal however, being an unimaginative guy, thinks of things that he’s already seen in order to manifest them to fight crime. For example, if someone is falling out of a building and he needs to catch them, what do you think he’s gonna use to catch the schmuck? A giant catcher’s mitt. Why not something cool like a giant Miyazaki Totoro-looking monster with a big squishy belly? Because he ain’t got no originality. If he needs to punch a bad guy, what do you think he’s gonna manifest with his green lantern powers? A punching glove. What about a shark with arms and fists? Missed opportunity there.
So what does Hal Jordan do now?
Well, considering he’s a founding member of the Justice League, that’s basically what he does. He sits up in a space station circling the air with a bunch of other grown adults in costumes and waits for something bad to happen so he can save the day. And bad things happen often.
One of the first villains they ever fought was a giant starfish lookin’ alien called Staro the Conqueror, and things only got worse from there. He also helped fight off the ancient alien abomination Darkseid and was instrumental in saving the universe from total destruction. He also got possessed by a fear monster named Parallax after his hometown of Coast City was destroyed. He doesn’t like to talk about it. He’s still traumatized, honestly.
What’s Hal Jordan’s role going to be in the new Lanterns series?
Seeing as how Hal is one of the only Lanterns that we know by name, I’m going to guess that role will be big. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the series is going to provide an intro for the new DCU main storyline that they plan to tell across film and TV. Reportedly, Hal will be teaming up with Earth’s other Green Lantern, a man named John Stewart. I know what you’re thinking, “you mean the Daily Show guy?” NO, I DO NOT.
This Jon Stewart is a former marine who joined the Green Lantern Corps at around the same time as Hal. The pair will be working together to solve of “terrestrial mystery” that apparently is “very much in the vein of True Detective“. If that’s the case, this series is going to get equal parts dark and eldritch. True Detective is all about a serial killer called the Yellow King who is inspired by the Lovecraftian entity Hastur, a space monster/god from beyond the stars. Similarly, Hal and John are going to have to team up against an “Ancient Horror” that is awakening from slumber. It’s gotta be Darkseid, right? I’m gonna go with Darkseid on this one.
So while Hal Jordan started out as a U.S. military flyboy, he’s now one-half of an intergalactic pair of super detectives on the hunt for a mysterious being hellbent on destroying everything. This also means that not one, but BOTH of Earth’s Green Lanterns are going to have a significant role in the upcoming DCU plot. I don’t know how that’s going to fly at the Justice League space station. I think this means that these boys are going to have to share a room. And if I know Hal, he’s going to call top bunk.
(featured image: DC Comics)
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