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Showcase Presents: Green Lantern - VOL 01 [Paperback]

John Broome , Gardner Fox
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Paperback CDN $17.51  
Paperback, Oct. 1 2005 --  

Book Description

Oct. 1 2005 Showcase Presents
Green Lantern is a perfect subject for DC's budget-priced Showcase Presents series because the hero made his first appearance in Showcase in July 1959. Volume 1 collects his first three appearances in Showcase (22-24) as well as the first 17 issues of his own book. alternating between one and two stories per issue.Hotshot test pilot Hal Jordan is selected by a dying alien as one who is both honest and without fear, thus deserving of wearing the power ring that enables the wearer to fight crime and injustice.In these issues, we meet Hal's boss and love interest, Carol Ferris, who Lois Lane-like only has an eye for his alter ego, Green Lantern; Hal's mechanic and confidant, Thomas "Pieface" Kalmaku; the all-powerful Guardians of the Universe, the source of the ring's energy; renegade Green Lantern Sinestro; the weaponers of Qward; and neighboring GL Tomar Re. Stories are by John Broome, with art by Gil Kane and Joe Giella, plus a few contributions by JLA stalwarts Gardner Fox and Murphy Anderson.While the Showcase Presents' black-and-white format is a reasonable tradeoff for this much material (526 pages) at this low price (under $10, even cheaper than most Showcase volumes), it turns out to be a significant disadvantage for GL, considering how often the plots rely on the use of green and especially yellow. --David Horiuchi

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Product Description

From School Library Journal

Grade 4 Up This collection of black-and-white reprints is devoted to the earliest adventures of the second incarnation of the classic hero. Originally depicted as a crime fighter with semi-mystical powers bestowed by a meteorite's green flame, the handsome hero was then reimagined as a fearless test pilot who uses his extraterrestrial power ring to fight against espionage and science-based villains. Over time, the stories' focus shifted to strange creatures and other sci-fi staples, and then further evolved into what is now recognizable as a traditional superhero comic, complete with a recurring arch nemesis, super villains with parallel powers to that of the hero, and guest appearances by popular characters from other DC titles. The artwork is sharp and clean and it's easy to see how Gil Kane, one of the artists, gained his reputation as a fine draftsman. The lack of color is disappointing, however; so many of the stories rely on green and yellow rays, vibrant alien skin colors, and the like. The classic exposition makes the action clear, and the content is undeniably fun, charming, and intelligent, proving its undeniable influence on the subsequent 30 years of graphic storytelling. Benjamin Russell, The Derryfield School, Manchester, NH
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Black and White goodness Oct. 24 2005
Finally, DC Comics has gotten on the bandwagon and is providing inexpensive editions of its classic comics. I have always been a fan of Green Lantern and this collection delivers. With classic Gil Kane art and written by John Broome, the stories inside are great. It collects the early GL appearances in Showcase comics #22-24 and G.L. #1-17. The classic GL charaters are introduced: Carol Ferris, Tom "Pieface" Kalmaku, the villainous Sinestro, and the GL of Xudar, Tomar Re. It is in black and white, much like Marvel's "Essentials" line, but this is not a criticism. I cannot wait for future titles in this line.
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  20 reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Showcase so far Jan. 29 2006
By Acontius - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Here's where the "green" Green Lantern gets started. The character of Hal Jordan develops throughout this tome that brings back to life the most mature plotting and themes of any early Sixties DC comics. Because of the interesting writing, this stands out among the Showcase and Marvel Essentials, and so it survives the harshness of black and white.

It is a shame that color is apparently prohibitively expensive. I'm sure, especially with a character whose NAME IS A COLOR, the publishers held their breath when they released it. Yes, I miss the color A LOT, but this and a few of the other Showcases have enough nostaliga and entertainment value to make for good bedtime reading. Plus some of the key background material for Infinite Crisis originates in early Green Lantern mags.

Put it all together with the value, and this is a very satisfying purchase. (Great marketing too--buying a few of these Showcase volumes prompted me to buy a few of the more expensive premium products DC has put out.)

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great volume with one obvious flaw Nov. 3 2008
By Matthew T. Weflen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
DC's Showcase Presents series is something which makes this old comic book fan very happy. Presenting 500-plus pages of silver age (or later) comics in chronological order makes for a terrific way to purchase a huge chunk of a character's history for cheap. The catch - they're in black and white. While this is a nice way to showcase the pen and ink artwork of the period (sorry, colorists!), it does diminish a very appealing aspect of comics - especially one like Green Lantern, whose powers and vulnerabilities involve different colors to a high degree.

Nonetheless, Green Lantern Volume 1 is a great buy. It's cheap, it's huge, and it presents the character, to my mind, that best exemplifies the period of the early 1960s. Hal Jordan is a test pilot who inherits a powerful ring that allows him to travel in space and join an intergalactic police force. I can't imagine a more exemplary character for an age and a country just beginning its space flights, harnessing new and powerful energies in both war and peace, and attempting to police the world in the Cold War.

John Broome's writing is good, if simplistic in spots (a requirement of the era's Comics Code authority, unfortunately, which restricted violence, moral ambuguity, and all other sorts of things which make "modern" comics so interesting). But the stories still almost universally contain kernels of good sci-fi ideas. Time travel, antimatter universes, shrinking to subatomic size, all sorts of sci fi ideas populate these pages. Younger readers ought to find the stories exciting and entertaining. Older readers might be a bit more bored, but there's plenty of period subtext for the avid student of sociology or 60's futurism to enjoy.

The art is the main draw, here. Gil Kane is unquestionably one of the greats of the silver age. His style here is fluid, uncluttered, and not quite as dynamic as his later stuff, but the elements are there. His layouts and anatomy are still creative and interesting. Watching his style evolve over 20 issues is a treat. Later volumes show his style progressing even further.

In summary, this volume should appeal to any fan of the character, any student of the 1960s, and any appreciator of Gil Kane's art. Since I am all three, this was a certain buy for me. Other than this group though, I would say that this book is appropriate for Silver Age aficionados and bright, inquisitive kids. At this price, it can't be beat.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Silver Age goodness! Nov. 28 2005
By Rowdy P. Scarlett - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
First, this is a great bargain. Only $9.99 for all these great old GL stories, what's not to love? The only disappointment is that the interiors are Black & White. Still, to keep the price under $10, I assume this was a necessity.

Gil Kane's art stil shines and shows why he IS THE Green Lantern artist. These stories are the start of the silver age GL's history and it's great that DC has chosen to reprint them now with Hal Jordan having recently returned to the Green Lantern fold.

Now, if only they'd do the Flash....
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real nice nostalgia and good drawing Jan. 10 2006
By n0s4a2 - Published on Amazon.com
I was too young to read Green Lantern in the years (1959-62) covered by these reprints, but they are charming, imaginitive and amusing. Gil Kane's pencil work is the epitome of clean, sylish DC econmy and class- so unlike today's overworked, overcrowed junk. The inking, mainly by Joe Giello, is really smooth, sophisicated and reserved. That was a great era. Innocent, morally uplifting stories are nonetheless tinged with mind-expanding sci-fi concepts- surprisingly dream like and sometimes downright psychedelic.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Silver Age Goodness! June 8 2011
By zombie phreak - Published on Amazon.com
I started reading Green Lantern comics during Blackest Night, and this was recommended to me by a friend who was an ever bigger fan than I am.

It was awesome to see the origin of Green Lantern in this Showcase and the first appearances of Sinestro, Hal Jordan, Carol Ferris and Star Sapphire. The powers of the ring seem to be all over the place and a little inconsistent, but still it was fun to read.

But be warned that you're going to read the same 2 or 3 editor's notes over and over and over and over again about the yellow impurity in Hal's Ring, and about Carol Ferris.

All in all, I say if you're a fan of Green Lantern, check this out so you can see the origins of this awesome hero.
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