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If I were EIC 3/8/11...

Posted On Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Is there anyone in the comic book world that doesn’t know who Geoff Johns is? I mean, really – he’s only the architect of THE most comprehensive franchise reinvigoration in comic book history! Seriously, what he did with Green Lantern is nothing short of AMAZING, breathing new life apparent into a title that spans more than fifty years of history, through the known universe and beyond. But that’s just a surface review – if you only look a little deeper, you’ll find where the real magic is.

Not to date myself, but MY Green Lantern is Kyle Rayner. You can call it a sign of the times of when I started reading comics (Early 90’s when DC’s focus rested squarely on the shoulders of Superman & Batman) or matter of allegiance (Darryl Banks was the first artist whose work I saw on the raw page, he’s the first industry professional I’d ever met and with him living in my hometown, he’s been a friend and mentor to me for more than a decade), but either way, I just never connected with Hal or the others. That is, until Johns came to play. While others seemed to banter about which Earth-born Lantern was best, Johns found a place for all four not just within the context of the Corps, but within the DC Universe as a whole, despite the deck shuffling of putting Hal back as the figurehead. He gave each character idiosyncrasies, passions, faults and failures that gave each one merit as an individual and a sense of brotherhood when they’re together. (He made me care about Guy Gardner – and I’ve wanted to punch him in the face since Superman died, maybe longer…Go Bucks!)

And then there’s the War of Light. The other lantern corps, the emotional spectrum, prophesies and “Chosen ones”; when you really see what he’s put together, you can see why he’s been given the wheel to steer DC’s future. But where I’d love to see him bring that magic to is another sprawling, space-epic franchise, whose place in comic fandom is rock solid as any bore from a planet called Krypton or a boy named Peter: STAR WARS. Just imagine Johns going in with his little red pen, tweaking and adjusting, leaving the core concept intact, but breathing new life into it all – where the lightsabers are manifestations of a Jedi’s inner self, the hue of their glow giving clue to how they FEEL. The Jedi Council would only be made up of those knights who had MASTERED their emotions, bending it to their WILL and bearing green sabers. The road to the Darkside would be paved in warm hues, culminating in a crimson world of hate or rage that has consumed its bearer until it is all that remains of them. And Anakin, the Chosen One, would’ve gone on a journey through every emotion, letting it mark him, define him, readying him to bring TRUE BALANCE to the force. Just a thought!

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