Hal Pictures Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!: Emotional Entities

Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Emotional Entities

There seems to be a whole lot of controversy stirred up amongst the various blogs and message boards about the foundations of the various entities that form the seven Color Corps for Blackest Night. Some are declaring that Geoff Johns has pillaged Judeo-Christian imagery for some of the avatars, such as the snake from the Garden of Eden for Avarice, and Cain and Abel for the first murder that created Rage.

This is a possibility of course. Certainly the claim that ALL life in the Universe first arose on Earth is a tad on the farfetched side, when you consider that the age of the Universe is vastly longer than the age of the Earth, and that a whole lot of alien societies seem to be a whole lot more advanced than we are. Nevertheless, I can understand an Earth-centric bias, since WE are from Earth...as are our favorite Green Lanterns. Besides, when it comes to the suspension of disbelief, I am a Master. Like Alice, I can believe all kinds of unlikely things before breakfast.

There are some other possibilities however. It is just as likely that the Avarice Snake is drawing on Norse mythology as opposed to Christian, with the Midgard Serpent, for example. And wasn't there a giant snake that Mongul used to surround Daxam a while back?

In addition, is it not possible, that we are seeing the entities in forms that are familiar to US, as natives of Earth. It is quite possible, that Kilowog sees them differently, as does Arisia, and Sinestro, reflecting the creation myths of THEIR planets. Or something.

Whatever the solution may be, I've decided not to let it bother me. I actually have a lot more interesting things to worry about. Although it WOULD be interesting to see if there was a way to reconcile the Emotional Corps with Gaiman's Endless, and how that all works out in the DC Universe. Not to mention the Spectre, the Phantom Stranger, New Gods, and stuff like that.

God, I love Comics.


At 12:38 PM, Blogger Sea-of-Green said...

Actually, I was kind of reminded of creatures representing various global zodiac signs (Greco-Roman/Western, Celtic, Chinese, etc.), and the attributes and personalities assigned to each zodiacal creature. But, I suppose that's just me. :-)

At 1:19 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

Hah! That's an aspect that I never even thought of...but it certainly works.

I guess the end result, is that you can read whatEVER you want into the various entities. Someone one the Geoff Johns Message board, pointed out that the White entity shares characteristics with ALL of the other colored ones, which is also interesting.

At 3:09 PM, Blogger LissBirds said...

I personally like it when religious and mythological influences make it into comics, as long as they are not heavy-handed.

I thought it was clever what could be seen as Judeo-Christian elements woven into the GL mythology. And I didn't even think of Norse mythology. Or the zodiac signs! I'm glad they left things open to interpretation. It does bug me slightly that life began on Earth, considering that there's other planets out there which are older. That's really my only problem with it.

(That and the design of the Ion entity. It looks like a slow-witted shark....I want the willpower entity to look more capable.)

I know some people are miffed, like Living Between Wednesdays. Now, I get my details mixed up, but when did Earth become the center of the universe? During Infinite Crisis? Have they been preparing for that splash panel in GL #52 all this time?

At 3:18 PM, Blogger Duskdog said...

I like the theory that different races see them differently. It would make sense. The "Earth as the beginning of life" thing bother me way more than the entities themselves.

I enjoy knowing details about fantasy/alien cultures. I would love to know what Arisia or Salaak or the Korugarians were raised to believe. Do they have religions? What is important to them? What do their societies emphasize and value?

I always enjoyed the old GL story where Hal accused a fellow GL of being corrupt because he accepted payments/rewards for his services... only to find out later that it was an important part of his culture to do so! Just like how, in some Earth cultures, it's considered extremely rude and disrespectful to turn down a gift or offering.

At 3:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's also the fact that the Judeo-Christian mythology is (to a large extent, if not entirely) objectively true in the DC Universe; Lucifer is a character, and the Spectre works for God. I'd like to see the Lantern mythos reconciled with the DC-Judeo-Christan-Vertigo one. I was loving the idea of the Spectre as the red entity, and by extension the Radiant as the indigo entity.

-- Jack of Spades

At 3:39 PM, Anonymous Pete said...

I gotta say, it doesn't bother me. DC has ALWAYS had a Judeo-Christian slant; other religions have never been given the prominence that, say, Norse mythology is given over at Marvel.

That said, even that fact aside, I'd call this a MUCH less egregious offense than labeling Vandal Savage THE Cain in Final Crisis: Revelations (which, I gotta say, was awesome).

At 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hm...I remember somebody once claiming that the Greek gods were the ruling deities of the DCU, while the Norse gods preside over Marvel.

Meaning the gods of the DC Universe are the Gods of Tragedy, while the gods of the Marvel Universe are the Gods of...Opera.

Makes sense.

At 4:10 AM, Blogger Fernando said...

I do not mind accepting life starting on earth. I do mind thinking that the emotional entities are link to humans (Adam, Cain, Abel, etc...). That is a little bit weird.

Anyhow, all the ideas that are being given here are very interesting indeed.

At 5:58 AM, Blogger Sea-of-Green said...

>>Meaning the gods of the DC Universe are the Gods of Tragedy<<

Comedy, too! The ancient Greeks invented the literary concepts of comedy AND tragedy. Of course, to them, comedy meant something a little different -- it meant a happy ending as opposed to humor. We haven't seen too many happy endings in the DCU lately, have we? :-(

At 7:31 AM, Blogger CreamCheeseAlchemist said...

Back when there was an actual angel in the JLA, the writer(?) said something about how it was like Thor being on the Avengers- not necessarily proof the Christian god created the DC universe any more than Odin created the Marvel universe.

At 1:58 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

I think that Scipio over at the much lamented Absorbascon was the one who came up with the idea that DC has Greek Gods, and Marvel the Norse ones...because I remember being quite struck by it.

Yeah, the various entities are fine, I'm still trying to wrap my brain around Earth being the center of life...but it is amazing the things that I can forgive.


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