I decided to move these posts over from "What Comics Have You Read Today?" and make a discussion out of it.

GREEN LANTERN: I started re-reading Archive volume one today (August 23), which comprises Showcase #22-24 and Green Lantern #1-5.

GREEN LANTERN ARCHIVES, v2 (#6-13): I have already mentioned elsewhere that Tracy finds that Hal Jordan's parents did not give him an alliterative name as they did their other two boys to be completely unbelievable. Political correctness aside, "Pieface" is a stupid nickname. (I rank it right up there with "King Faraday" and "Tom, Dick & Harriet.) Personally, I find the term "little Eskimo grease monkey" (which Broome uses at least once each issue) to be even more offensive. The covers of each of these issues stands out in my memory, but the splash pages are quite distinctive and memorable as well. I have learned to skip all of the footnotes (as well as the oath) in order to avoid repetition.

GREEN LANTERN ARCHIVES v3 (#14-21): Up until this point, all stories had been by John Broome and Gil Kane, but in this volume, Gardner Fox writes one story (of two in each issue) in #16, 17 and #21. Also, in #18, Mike Sekowsky pencils six pages (over Gil Kane layouts). The Gardner Fox story in #16, "Earth's First Green Lantern," is remarkable in that it answers the question, given that a Green Lantern can fly through space via his or her power ring alone, why was Abin Sur travelling in a spaceship in Showcase #22? Fox provides a convoluted explanation regarding energy creatures called Larifars and the theft of "I-factors" from victim races.

What makes this story remarkable is that Alan Moore provided a completely different explanation in Tales of the Green Lantern Corps #2 (1986). As I recalled these two contradictory stories, I preferred the one by Alan Moore... until I re-read them both in the course of this project. Whereas both stories use the explanation that Abin Sur is using a spaceship because he's worried about his ring losing its charge, in the Fox story, he does so as a ruse so (for convoluted reasons, as I mentioned) Larifars do not see him recharge his ring' "Earth's First Green Lantern" knows his ring will remain charged until the time limit is up. Alan Moore's story, as entertaining as it is otherwise, does not account for this fact, so I must change my favorite to the earlier Gardner Fox story.

GREEN LANTERN ARCHIVES v4 (#22-29): Within these eight issues, John Broome wrote five stories, Gardner Fox wrote ten. The comics themselves were published without credits, but that information is provided in the table of contents. It's fun to guess which stories were written by witch writer. [HINT: The distinctive way Fox uses nouns as verbs is a dead giveaway, as is his use of the term "star-sun." He also tends to throw in more theoretical physics.) Also this volume includes: the third appearance of Hector Hammond (#22), the first appearance of the Tattooed Man (#23), the first two appearances of the Shark (#24 & #28), [arguably] the first appearance of Mogo (#24), the return of Sonar (#25), the return of Star Sapphire (#26), the first appearance of Black Hand (#29), a cameo appearance by the Justice League of America, and more. The first solo Green Lantern story I ever read ("The House that Fought Green Lantern" reprinted in a 100-Pager in 1974) originally appeared in #28. Tracy finds it even more implausible that Hal wasn't given an alliterative name after the introduction of Judge Jeremiah Jordan. No "weenie-ization" of Hal Jordan yet. 

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Dave, I sure enjoyed that cover array. I was collecting almost comprehensively by the early '70s, but don't have most of those issues -- because they weren't distributed to my neck of the woods. We mostly got Marvel, Archie and DC, with a smattering of Charlton, and even Marvel and DC wasn't consistent -- I often had to search for missing issues at flea markets, and for many years Conan the Barbarian #3 was a holy grail. Oh, pre-direct market distributors, you never fail to disappoint.

Thanks again!

I was talking to someone the other day, and I realized that I know next to nothing of Hal Jordan's adventures from 1959-1975.

Code against killing:

Did the Guardians ever

Have a rule like that?

Bob, I don't know the answer to that question for certain, but I would guess not. First of all, it's unrealistic that a universal peace-keeping force would preclude the necessity of the possibility of one of their agents having to kill in the line of duty; second, there wasn't a whole lot of killing in the Silver Age to begin with; third, any organization which allowed corporal punishment for its members but not the criminals they pursued would be hypocritical.

DISCLAIMER: I have not yet read issue #55 (I'll be there shortly), but there are plenty of other cases, including the execution of Sinestro. (He got better.)

It strikes me that Green Lantern is one of the few comic book super-heroes who wears a uniform instead of a costume. Every once in a while Spider-Man (or rather, his writer) refers to his costume as a "uniform"; no.

Another example: X-Men #1-38 = uniforms; #39 and on = costumes.

Oh, duh! (Challs, too, I guess.)

Would you count the Blackhawks?  They were super-heroes, and they wore a uniform.

Just not at the same time.

Oh, and we mustn't forget that Green Lantern isn't the only uniformed alien cop who operates on Earth...

Which just reinforces the "costume" vs. "uniform" confusion.

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