Beginning this fall, there will be not one, but three different Green Lantern titles in circulation. Jeremy Adams and Xermánico will continue to work on the main title in the series, focusing on a newly-grounded Hal Jordan trying to get back on his feet again. Then, later this month on September 19th, Green Lantern: War Journal #1 by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Montos will release, focusing on John Stewart. Finally, the first Green Lantern, Alan Scott, will begin his own journey on October 24th in the Alan Scott: The Green Lantern by Tim Sheridan and Cian Tormey.
Plurality has made the Green Lantern mantle unique in superhero comics as a whole, and each series will highlight what makes these ring-slingers so easy to become invested in. Ahead of this transformational period for Green Lantern, we sat down with Jeremy Adams and Tim Sheridan to talk about Knight Terrors: Green Lantern and Alan Scott: The Green Lantern respectively.
Knight Terrors: Green Lantern Is A Bold Exploration Of Hal Jordan’s Greatest Fears.
For Jeremy Adams, a fun challenge of writing Hal Jordan was finding what he likes about the character in the first place. “I always felt like Hal was a little bit bland in certain ways,” Adams says. “And so now, I’m trying to figure out what makes him tick. And it’s the same thing when I started writing The Flash. That first arc was just so much about what do I think Wally’s voice is, who do I think he is?”
Knight Terrors, a company-wide event that plunged both heroes and villains alike into their greatest fears, has been a perfect opportunity to discover more about Hal. Its focus on fear has been a direct way for Adams to approach the core themes of the Green Lantern mantle. As much as Green Lanterns are driven by willpower, they are also driven by their absence of fear, no matter how dark things get.
“There’s very much a moment in Evil Dead 2 where it’s like, ‘Oh, this is about being scared.’ And then Ash straps on a chainsaw and takes care of business. So that’s my philosophy.”
Still, even with being the second oldest Green Lantern in DC Comics, there are more aspects about Hal Jordan that Adams has uncovered, like his Jewish heritage. In learning about Hal’s upbringing with a Jewish mother and a Catholic father, it gave Adams an additional layer to incorporate into his mythos. “Hal has this thread through not just being Jewish, but also being the hand of vengeance for the Abrahamic God in the continuity of DC Comics,” Adams said, referring to Jordan’s time as The Spectre. Hal’s Jewish heritage and experience as the Spirit of Vengeance are two defining characteristics that have flown under the radar for some time, leaving Adams with ample room for exploration as the series continues.
Alan Scott: The Green Lantern Captures Life For DC’s First Ring-Slinger As A Closeted Gay Man.
Similarly, this extends to Alan Scott’s upcoming series written by Tim Sheridan. Beyond it featuring the “return” of Scott’s arch-nemesis, The Red Lantern, it will also explore the hero’s life as a closeted gay man in the 1930s and early 1940s. Scott came out as gay in 2021.
“The priority for me is to make sure that we don’t upend everything about Alan’s life, as if this is some kind of gigantic reinvention or retcon or something. It’s really about coloring in some things that maybe weren’t colored in before, about connecting dots that weren’t connected before,” Sheridan explained. “Older people come out of the closet every day, and you don’t yell in their face, ‘That’s a retcon.’ They’re just telling you more information about themselves that they withheld maybe before.”
Sheridan stressed that the book will have both “great comic book fun” in addition to a darker look at life as a closeted gay man during Scott’s time. He identified a central tension underlying Scott’s character as a public superhero and a gay man. On one hand, he’s a guy who’s lauded as a hero on the front page of the newspaper, “but he knows that by the laws of the day, he is a criminal in his own bedroom.”
Beyond the historical component of Alan Scott’s story, Sheridan hints at the expansiveness of Scott’s powers that fans are only beginning to understand. “The explanation of the green energy has always made me wonder why we mostly only see Green Lanterns create energy constructs. I’ve always felt like there’s greater potential for the type of power that they wield. And I’ve wondered if maybe we’re only in our infancy of understanding what it can do and be used to do.”
This approach to a Green Lantern story is incredibly promising. After all, what makes the Green Lantern mantle unique in superhero comics is the infinite sense of creativity that writers and artists can bring to each title. Regarding this watershed moment in time for Green Lantern, Adams hopes that this era of books will remind readers why they love these ring-slingers in the first place. While they all have the same source of their powers, it’s who they are as individuals that makes them so special.
“I think that will end up catapulting Green Lantern in this next era, whatever that is. But it has to be drastically different than what has come before it. It has been so cosmological for so long, that by virtue of Tim [Sheridan] doing a mini series about Alan Scott that’s Earth-based, and I’m doing Hal Jordan that’s Earth-based, it’s like now we brought them home.”
And Earth has never been happier to have some of its greatest Green Lanterns back.
Knight Terrors: Green Lantern #1 and Knight Terrors: Green Lantern #2 are available now. Alan Scott: The Green Lantern #1 will release on October 24th, 2023.