I Like Ham 2: Favorite Fictions - Fear of a Pointed Stick

Well, Steve, this weekend's the Sayville Summerfest, so, naturally, I'm sitting here in the SPL*, away from it all. It's tougher than you would think, coming up with ideas for a blog. I don't know that any of you would find "What I did at work all week" all that interesting, par exemple. It has been interesting, prowling through the old site, looking for what I would save. I came across a thread about "Ten Favorite Characters in All Media". It's hard to name your ten favorites - in point of fact, there's way more than ten whose adventures I've enjoyed over the years, and picking out ten "favorites" would be well nigh impossible. But I thought it might be interesting to pick out some of my favorites and get into a little bit of why I like them. Since this is, at heart, a comic book board, I'll start with a comic book hero, to whit:

The Green Lantern (Alan Scott): You know, the first DC Comics I ever read were some of those old giant-sized reprints, mostly of Golden Age comics, that they put out back in the 70's. I'm probably one of the few people of my generation who was exposed to the Golden Age versions of these characters before he saw the Silver Age versions. One of these books was a reprint of All-Star Comics #3, the first JSA story, and amongst the characters therein was the Golden Age Green Lantern. Eventually, I started reading the current DC books and encountered the other Green Lanterns that existed. I enjoyed the adventures of Hal Jordan and the other memebers of the Corps, but even still, and down unto the current day, Alan Scott was and is my favorite Green Lantern.

"Why?", I imagine I hear you ask.

"Several reasons!", I imagine myself replying.

One: His costume. I've always had a fondness for Golden Age costumery, clunky though they could be, and I've always found Alan Scott's to be one of the most visually strking. No, it's not as sleek as Hal Jordan's, and probably wouldn't work for an intergalactic police force, but it works for a lone mystery man. so, there's not alot of green in it - so what?

Two: He wears his ring on his left hand. This hasn't always been done consistently, but it's typically on his left hand. To me as a little kid, the fact that he wore his ring on his left hand meant that he was a southpaw like me, and I grew up in an era where us lefthanders were sometimes picked on for it, so it was cool to see a hero I thought of as lefthanded.

Three: His cool ring oath:

...and I shall shed my light over dark evil.
For the dark things cannot stand the light,
The light of the Green Lantern!

Much better than the nursery rhyme they eventually replaced it with! (Say, as an aside, has there ever been a Green Lantern who used a limerick as a ring oath? "There once was a blue guy from Oa...")

Four: He fought Solomon Grundy alot. Big, hostile zombie. Gotta love big hostile zombies as your baddies.

Five: He's an older hero who's been around awhile. And that's not just because I'm now an older guy who's been around awhile myself. Even when I was a little kid, I liked the idea of older heroes who'd bene around awhile, the experienced guys who could show the younger heroes a thing or two. Also, he's one of the few Golden Age heroes where it makes sense that he's still around today. Hey, he's got a magic ring - for all we know, he doesn't ever have to be any older than he wants to be. For Wildcat, they had to invent that nonsense of him having nine lives, which has always struck as exceeding lame.

Six: Speaking of Wildcat - Alan Scott has inspired other heroes. Ted Grant became Wildcat after coming across a Green Lantern comic, how cool is that?

Seven: He's got an odd weakness. Yeah, it's kind of lame, but on the other hand, it does mean that he could conceivably be beaten by a guy with a pointed stick, and being an old Python fan, I can never be too unhappy with that.

Eight: He's buddies with the Golden Age Flash, another old favorite of mine. I always liked the Green Lantern/Flash friendships, and liked when it carried over to Barry Allen and Hal Jordan, and to a lesser extent to Kyle Rayner and Wally West.

Well, there's still alot more I could say, but my library time is running out. Suffice to say, Green Lantern Alan Scott is a favorite character of mine who's been in many of my favorite DC Comics stories.

Wow, I thought I'd get more than one character in - heh. Maybe in the future I''ll say some about some of my other favorite characters in other media. Or, maybe you will say something about some of your favorite characters,

What's a bridge for, eh?

Anyway, I'll probably take in some of the Summerfest. I wonder when the Allman Brothers cover band is coming on?

*Stands for "Sayville Public Library"

Views: 95

Comment by Randy Jackson on August 1, 2009 at 4:49pm
Well, my distaste for Hal Jordan is well documented, but I have to agree with you that Alan Scott rocks!

Also, I think his weakness is much less lame than that of the GLC. Sure, Johns explained it away, but the color yellow is still not a weakness I can get behind.
Comment by Don Collett on August 3, 2009 at 1:39am
I like the modern GL mythos (though I prefer Kyle over Hal). I really like Alan Scott.

Jay Garrick, the original Flash, knocks all their socks off!

I've only read a few of those Golden Age stories, but I came away much more impressed with Garrick than I was with Barry Allen, whom I've always found a bit dull. Jay Garrick, while a fairly easygoing guy himself, has a certain self-confidence that never crossed the line into arrogance. The best example of this was a Mark Waid-scripted story that focused on a typical day for Jay: filling in for an injured Wally West, doing some scientific research, and sitting down for an interview, and inspiring Dick Grayson to say "That's who I want to be when I grow up".

I also like the idea of the old guard/mentors, and Jay is a great one. As I think I posted in another thread, his current characterization reminds me of Jimmy Stewart, and that can't be all bad.

And finally, there's one super-power of his that I don't think has ever been explained...how he keeps his helmet on while running at super-speed!
Comment by Figserello on August 4, 2009 at 7:27pm
I declare false advertising. I came here thinking it would be about Vampires...
Comment by The Baron on August 5, 2009 at 7:10am
Ooh, I hadn't thought of that.


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