Hal Jordan is the most famous of any hero to ever go by the name Green Lantern, and has been for nearly sixty years. Currently, he’s the only hero at DC Comics whose civilian name is above a title, in the currently running Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps series. In 75 years, there has yet to be a Bruce Wayne: Batman or Clark Kent: Superman comic for example. But no matter how beloved Hal is to comic book fans though, one poorly received movie can do a lot of damage to a character’s reputation in the mainstream, as we witnessed in the fallout of the 2011 Green Lantern flop starring Ryan Reynolds.
Ever since that ill-fated film, the character has been basically punished in the media. Or, at the very least, exiled. The excellent Green Lantern Cartoon Network animated series ended prematurely, and the Justice League movie that comes out next year doesn’t seem to have a Lantern in the initial line-up, although reliable rumors persist that a member of the Green Lantern Corps will join the team at the end of the film. However, it will more than likely be the John Stewart version, thanks to the character’s long standing association with the Justice League Unlimited animated series, not to mention adding more diversity to the film. But again, this all probably leaves out the “greatest Green Lantern ever,” as Hal Jordan will almost certainly be nowhere to be found until at least a Green Lantern Corps movie. And then only maybe.
But as I watched the alien invasion crossover on the CW this week on Supergirl, Flash, Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow, and saw all the heroes gather at the makeshift Hall of Justice from Super Friends, I realized what the CW version of the DC Universe needs right now more than anything is Hal Jordan. Not only is television the best place to rehabilitate characters that had less than stellar movie debuts (hey there Supergirl and Buffy, I’m looking at you), but Hal would be much better served by the CW DC multiverse due to his pre-existing relationships to the CW/DC characters in the comics.
Now, I’m not suggesting a Green Lantern series on the CW. A Green Lantern-centric show would require the character to spend a lot of time in space, and frankly, the CW simply can’t afford to do that. Not to throw shade, but they can barely afford to make Legends of Tomorrow not look cheap, so I really don’t need a low-rent Green Lantern series. Best to save the full-fledged GL reboot for the big screen (which is scheduled to happen in 2020 anyway). But if Hal Jordan just shows up as a recurring character (hanging out on Earth in between space missions) he could be really well utilized on almost all the CW shows, with the possible exception of Supergirl. But hey, she’s on another Earth, so it’s ok.
In the comics, Hal Jordan has two BFFs in the Justice League — Barry Allen and Oliver Queen. And who are the CW’s longest running superheroes? Hello! It’s almost pre-destined to happen! In the early-60s comics, Hal and Barry would team up all the time, and even go out on double dates with their then girlfriends, Iris West and Carol Ferris. In more recent stories of their early friendship, we find out that Hal Jordan even gave Kid Flash Wally West a power ring once and made him “Kid Lantern.” That’s something the TV show could totally play up now.
Hal Jordan and Oliver Queen share an even bigger connection in the comics. Their shared titles from the ’70s, Green Lantern/Green Arrow, showed the two heroes traveling across America and bonding. The two heroes couldn’t have been more different as characters, but that’s why the match was made in heaven (that, and they both have Green in their names, let’s not forget).
They shared a comic book for almost a decade, and for an entire generation, the two heroes became synonymous with each other. In fact, prior to his pairing with Hal Jordan, Oliver Queen was pretty much just a Robin Hood-themed Batman knock-off. (Not saying the Arrow TV version is that… Or am I??) But let’s be honest — after five seasons, Arrow needs a shot in the arm. The ratings aren’t what they once were, and shows like Flash and Supergirl keep stealing the show’s thunder, having semi-frequent team-ups with Hal, or maybe a half season adaptation of “Hard Travelling Heroes” would surely spice the show up.
And even Legends of Tomorrow has a Hal Jordan connection, as Ray Palmer, aka the Atom, and Martin Stein, aka Firestorm, also have deep comic book ties to Hal. A little less than Barry and Oliver, been enough for him to be showing up on the Waverider from time to time.
This year Arrow producers shot down the appearance of Hal Jordan on the show, but that’s for this season — season six is still to come. And both Hal Jordan’s hometown of Coast City and even Hal himself have been hinted at several times on The Flash. If WB can allow an alternate version of Superman to exist on occasion on Supergirl and in the movie universe, not to mention the Flash having a TV version and a movie version at the same time, then why on Oa not Hal Jordan? That’s even assuming he’s one of the Lanterns to appear in any of the future Justice League or Green Lantern Corps films. Here’s hoping that when all the heroes unite next year for the inevitable big CW crossover epic, Hal Jordan is standing next to them, ring glowing and ready to fight the bad guys with his buddies. It’s long overdue.
Do you feel Hal Jordan fits into the CW/DC Universe more than the films? Let us know what you think down below in the comments.
Image: DC Comics/CW Network