Alan Scott: The Green Lantern #1 is published by DC Comics, written by Tim Sheridan, art by Cian Tormey, colors by Matt Herms and letters by Lucas Gattoni. Alan Scott’s life just before and during the war is revisited, with much more discomfort and secrecy included.
Returning to Alan Scott’s adventures as a hero and even before that is important, considering the change in his history. The revelation that he is gay makes his experiences at that time much more precarious. And instantly, Sheridan establishes a complicated situation for Alan that shows how awkward his situation was then. The Justice Society of America has been founded, but Scott prefers to work alone. Political pressures and blackmail forces him back into action, and the discomfort is palpable. But there is a split story within the structure of the comic, with a flashback even further. It details a forbidden romance story between Alan and a lover from his time in the army. It’s a heartbreaking twist that adds far more depth to the old soldier’s story. But this is more than a wartime love story, with a mystical, unknown enemy that connects those two points in time. Even what is supposed to be a routine hostage situation is filled with mystery. What is being fought is largely unseen. The time periods run concurrently, interspersing as they become increasingly important to one another.
The dialogue and the relationships crafted in Alan Scott: The Green Lantern #1 are extremely important. Within this book is mighty love and a connection that is forcefully repressed and used as a form of shame and control. It’s tough to read, especially considering its effect on the hero. He is on edge and uncomfortable for the entirety of the comic, except when he is with the one that makes him happy. The conversations reflect shameful periods of worldwide history. Despite how Alan is being forced into interacting with the JSA, their inclusion in this first comic is relatively minor. The book centers around the hero, his constant inner turmoil, and his partner, Johnny. The narration is terrific, written in a journal after the event. But it perfectly captures the pain and the despair that reverberates years later.
The art is terrific. The location and the time are presented nicely as the late 30s and early 40s war story begins. The Navy ships, cars, radios, and people look amazing. The facial expressions are crucial for showing Alan’s pent-up frustration and rage frequently, especially in that first conversation with a superior. Whether he is wearing the mask or not, the gut-wrenching emotion is clear and elevated to an intense level. Tormey builds the world before adding the magic. That classic Green Lantern costume and the glimpses at other wartime superheroes are untampered with. The enemy’s power is omitted in both time periods, but where they come from is still secretive. The scale and the severity of the situation are huge, especially on the warship. The balance between the grand events outside and what happens inside is brilliant, displaying two excellent action scenes even when the enemy is so obscured.
The colors are phenomenal. The vibrancy of the costume that Green Lantern uses is a great symbol against the restrictive, dull colors present everywhere else, as well as Scott’s stark blond hair. During the final half of the comic, the threat exudes this bright, powerful red that hints at something unnatural. It’s a dangerous force that threatens to overwhelm and envelop anything within it. The relative normality of everything else within the comic leads to the display of an exhilarating, unknown entity. The lettering for the dialogue is fine, but the text in the caption boxes is extremely small.
Alan Scott: The Green Lantern #1 is a deep mystery that stretches across time, barely even offering insight into what the Green Lantern came up against and will face as the series progresses. But there is also a romance story that is doomed from the start but is still bittersweet. The comic is always on edge and unsettled, investigating what it must have been like to love someone impossible, even for a superhero. And then there were the ramifications, such as how knowledge of that information can be and was used as a cruel campaign for control. It reshapes how such a long-standing character will be viewed.
Alan Scott: The Green Lantern #1
Alan Scott: The Green Lantern #1 is a deep mystery that stretches across time, barely even offering insight into what the Green Lantern came up against and will face as the series progresses.