Robot 6

Your Mileage May Vary: Green Lantern Corps #42

Of this week’s comic haul, Green Lantern Corps #42 seems to have gotten quite a reaction. Mostly due to the end, of course.

(I’m betting he’ll be back in a month.)

Peter of My Chaotic Mind sadly looks back at the history of Kyle Rayner:

Towards the end of the issue, Kyle realises he’s no better than them. As mentioned, the thugs outclassed Terry in age, size and strength and Kyle outclasses them because he’s wearing a Green Lantern ring. That scene alone made it stick in my mind as one of my favourite storylines. I later tracked down to trade, “Brother’s Keeper” and while the following storylines didn’t quite have a scene to match it, were still good.

Kyle was also DC’s answer to Peter Parker, even if they wouldn’t admit to it. Two of his three key girlfriends (Alex and Jen) died because of him. He was a freelance artist and it wasn’t until the job that lead to him meeting Terry that he got a decent paycheck on a frequent basis. I’ve never been a big fan of Batman and it’s only recently that I’ve developed an interest in and respect for Superman. Kyle was the best example of a Marvel style hero (one who deals with real life problems) in the DC universe, and acted pretty much as the doorway for a Marvel fan like me to get interested in DC.

Chris Thorn of Registered Weapon is irate:

The death of Kyle is the culmination of DC’s marginalization and disinterest in the character since the return of Hal Jordan (for the uniformed, check out the wiki history). The move wreaks of spite and contempt for fans for preferring any Green Lantern over Hal Jordan and the Silver Age. Kyle has had target on his back for that reason for awhile. He’s the brightest light of an era that DC is hellbent on rewriting out of current continuity: the 90s (I could even argue the post-Crisis era too). One of the prevalent plot devices in that decade was the emergence of replacement/legacy heroes such as Jean Paul Valley, four Supermen, Wally West, Connor Hawke, Ben Reilly, Jack Knight, Artemis, young Tony Stark, The Ray and plenty of other minor heroes. Some of the heroes were editorially designed to be temporary, others were reinventions of characters not printed in decades. Despite being part of a stunt, whether or not the character WAS a stunt depended on the writer. While Emerald Twilight meets the criteria of an ultimate comics money grab with a legendary hero turning villain, killing his brothers-in-arms and destroying the decades old foundations of the intellectual property, the result was far from it.

While Kirk Warren of the Weekly Crisis enjoyed the issue:

Yes, Kyle Rayner actually dies in this issue. There was no pre-hype, no early spoilers and no indication he was set to die in any way. In fact, everyone pegged him as completely safe. He and Guy had their niche in this book and the brother-like relationship was a highlight of the Green Lantern Corps title. Kyle even had some great relationship building moments with Soranik Natu earlier in the issue that had me hoping to see more of it in the future.

Instead, he died saving the corps he helped rebuild with a heartfelt, “I love you.”, to Soranik and a, “you’ve been like a brother”, farewell to Guy before taking the fallen Alpha Lantern’s core and detonating it in the middle of the Black Lantern’s, ending that threat on Oa and saving the Central Power Battery. I know it’s hard to take a death seriously in an event like Blackest Night, which hinges on the dead coming back to haunt our heroes, but this hit me like a punch in the gut and Kyle was the character that first introduced me to Green Lantern comics.”

So what do you think?

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Comments

32 Comments

Kyle acted like a hero and the issue was solid. Not a gimmick, and definitely not a spiteful editorial move. I am still debating whether he’ll be back. My instinct is Yes.

It makes me laugh that there are people who actually think he’s dead.

I gotta agree with Rich Johnston, on this: death in comic books is no longer even worth noticing. It’s been a joke for a long time, but there was still some excitement attached to a (more or less) major character’s death.

Nowadays, no one can even pretend that it “counts.” Personally, I blame the return of Bucky Barnes (and the subsequent return of Barry Allen).

He’s obviously not dead, so whatever.

Its obvious he’s dead. He died a hero.

This reaction really reminds me of the reaction from Booster Gold’s “death” in 52.

Though after Kyle comes back at the end of the event, can those thinking it’s permanent past this event (or think it’s some sort of agenda) personally slam their head on a desk.

They gave him a good death… but he’s going to have to be resurrected eventually along with the other heroes who’ve fallen who will no doubt return at the conclusion of “Blackest Night.”

I, for one, am all for a mass resurrection.

Chris Thorn of Registered Weapon Doesn’t Get Comics. He may be dead, but unlike the deaths of the various JLI members, I don’t think anyone really believes that this one will stick. He died in the middle of a storyline where the main thrust is corpses of dead loved ones being reanimated. We already (almost) know for a fact that Aquaman comes back because of appearances he’s scheduled to make after the mini ends. The Hawks reincarnate themselves, so they’ll be back. Who’s to say that Kyle won’t join them?

Brilliant. He’ll be back. But still, brilliant storytelling.

Is someone starting KEAT?

It’s actually KOLD: Kyle’s Order of Lime Defenders. Join today!

http://registered-weapon.com/2009/11/15/kold-as-ice/

Wraith said: Nowadays, no one can even pretend that it “counts.” Personally, I blame the return of Bucky Barnes (and the subsequent return of Barry Allen).

I’d say this has been a source of cynicism for fanboys for a lot longer than the last three years.

I think the whiners exemplify much of what is wrong with many comic-book fans who apparently are not familiar with the art of telling a super hero story in the Stan Lee tradition. The recipe requires mixing liberal amounts of radio soap-opera melodrama, movie serial cliffhangers, and comic book super heroics. Since “death” has been introduced into mainstream comics as a viable plot device, it has had as much meaning as a character’s death in a soap opera where “‘death’ and return” has long been used, often because of contract negotiations gone bad, but often in actual service of a story.

Those people who assume that the cliffhanging final page showing a dead character means that character is truly dead are woefully ignorant of the tropes of mainstream comics.

IMO, of course.

Thanks for the link. I think what’s getting lost in my post is while the death stunt pissed me off, my true gripe is that Kyle is just an underused character. The bombastic approach was to make a point that people are willing to spend money on a Kyle-centric comic because something about that character resonates with large number of people.

I thought the issue was great on several levels. That’s pretty much all that matters.

Debaser said:

“It makes me laugh that there are people who actually think he’s dead.”

Truly. In just the last 5 years, how many times have we seen a character get “killed” only to still appear in the next issue.

What’s with the angst every week? Something outrageous happens to a character, a blogger writes an entry, and much angst and anger follows. Isn’t the “I’m angry at Marvel/DC/whomever for killing my puppy, and I’ll never read their comics again” post becoming cliche? Are the bloggers that desperate for hits?

Wraith said:

“I gotta agree with Rich Johnston, on this: death in comic books is no longer even worth noticing. It’s been a joke for a long time…”

Wraith, agreeing with Johnston may get you a reputation. ;)

Rich Johnston: master of stating the obvious. Wish I could get paid for stating the obvious.

Hey, Captain Mar-vell’ still dead! ha!

Well, given that he’s on the cover and solicit for the January issue of GLC, he didn’t get his heart popped, and there’s no visible wounding on him, I’m betting Soranik pulls some medical magic out of her hat next issue (but not before Guy goes Red)

Just saying.

That said, Kyle’s one of my three favourite characters (along with Dick Grayson and Wally West…I have a thing for legacy heroes I guess) and if I’m wrong it’ll be one less thing to enjoy in comics. Which would suck.

All this angst over Kyle Raynor, but what of poor old Frank Castle? He was also killed this week, and is scheduled to be involved in a similarly ill-conceived storyline about resurrecting the dead. But HE got taken out by the son of Wolverine! I mean, the embarrassment! The indignity! To think that Marvel’s biggest bastard could be hacked to pieces by a character that lame! It just ain’t right!

It was an epic moment that shocked me and impressed me. Whether or not he returns I don’t think the impact of those pages will lessen at all to me. Comic characters die and are reborn constantly, to me it’s sad when they die and fantastic when they return. It’s just how the stories are told. Also Kyle dying and potentially returning only makes him even more of a power player in the DCU because almost all the top tier characters have cheated death as well.

I honestly did not see this coming. I was so sure that Kilowog was going to be the one to die. So I was doubly surprised when Kyle bought the farm. But oh, he bought it so beautifully.

I do think that he’ll be back, but that doesn’t negate the fact that he died a heroic death. It beats betting waxed off panel in the kitchen, that’s for sure.

I think the fact it wasn’t hyped up at all removed it from the gimmick category.

It was just part of the ongoing narrative and for me made it seem like the beginning of something more. So while saddened, I was thoroughly satisfied with it.

Great issue. I know kyle will be back.

I bet all these people pining for Kyle as the one and only GL also pine for Ben Reilly. Same types of folks.

“The move wreaks of spite and contempt …”

What?

Yay, he’s dead. Happy day.

I said on the board that this another death nail for dc. This was dumb. Really dumb just to kill off another character. Blackest Night now seems not just excuse to kill off characters again that are already dead but to kill off just about anyone not really tied to anything. Kyle and Guy seem expendable to dc because I guess they think they can sell GLC without them. :( I know most think BN is going to have happy ending but my gut tells me no. I base that on recent dc crossovers and stuff. No one is coming back at the end.

By the way I really hope I’m wrong about that.

if he was really dead wouldn’t it end with him “rising?” to become a black lantern?
Or perhaps he will become a black lantern and his willpower will allow him to turn or something like that.

Also I would have been happy if they killed Kyle off years ago but damn dc made me like him. :( I pretty much got a feeling he is dead and will probably be a black lantern in glc 43. Guy will probably still be Red Lantern at the end of BN which is just dumb. I am hope I’m wrong because they tried before to make a guy villain in Superman and that was even dumb. That was before GL Reborn. Welcome to 21 century dc comics. DUMB! Sorry I’m 20 year fan just hopes he is wrong but hasn’t proven wrong yet on what dc done in recent years.

he has returned like Jesus, but with cooler powers.

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