Green Man (Green Lantern)

A day may come when there are no more Green Lanterns in Lucy W.‘s request, but it is not this day! Next in line is another one of the many nameless cameos in the Green Lantern film, a background character who’s spotted during Hal Jordan‘s first visit on Oa: among the many weird aliens, there’s one who looks like a giant frog. That’s Green Man, the heroic protector of Sector 2828. In the movie, he looks quite different from his comicbook counterpart, who’s definitely green, but not so froggysh. If you think the name doesn’t sound like a true name at all, you are perfectly right, but there’s a reason to it…a reason we’ll see together.

The alien known as Green Man was born on Uxor, a planet with a unique characteristic: on that world, individuality was morally deplorable, and the amphibian Uxorians lived following the certainty that “All are one”, that everybody was just a part of the collective identity. Uxorians didn’t have any personal possession, not even a name, and only communitarian needs and goals were taken into consideration, while the individual being simply ceased to exist in the collective society. A single misfit, however, resisted to this kind of society, an outcast who desired an individual identity. Mantaing the sense of self in such an environment required an incredible willpower, such that it didn’t go unnoticed even outside the planet: one day, one of the Guardians of the Universe visited Uxor, and he offered the outcast a chance to join the Green Lantern Corps. The misfit immediately accepted the offer, considering a true treasure both his personal Green Power Ring, and the name “Green Lantern” he could now call himself with: he was finally an individual being. He also had to swear never to come back to his home star system, as it was part of a non-interference agreement between the Guardians and the Psions of Vega. This particular oath, however, he didn’t respect, as he was constantly trying to protect Uxor and the nearby planets from the incursions of the Spider Guild, a group of brutal conquerors who took refuge in the Vega System everytime they wanted to escape from the Green Lanterns, and came out of it any time the Omega Men (protectors of Vega) chased them. In order to accomplish something against them, Green Lantern discovered another shocking act of individuality: he disobeyed his orders, he took contacts with Kalista of the Omega Men and arranged a meeting with them.

Green Lantern met the Omega Men on planet Rashashoon, and with them he planned the attack on the Spider Guild’s home planet. They succesfully destroyed it, but the Guardians found out about what could become a diplomatic incident with the Psions: they ordered the Uxorian to come back to Oa, but he simply couldn’t leave the Omega Men in trouble. His Power Ring and Power Battery were remotely deactivated, but he chose to stay nevertheless, helping his allies to escape from the planet. The Omega Men, grateful, brought him back to Oa, where the Uxorian was spoiled of his Green Lantern title; proud of what he had accomplished nevertheless, the alien started calling himself “Green Man”, not wanting to give up on the individual identity he had fought so much for. After a time of penalty, however, the Guardians chose to reintegrate him in the Corps, recognizing the heroism of his action despite his rebellion: he became a Green Lantern again, provided that he never entered the Vega System. Not only Green Man respected the condition, but he also prevented fellow Lanterns Kyle Rayner and Guy Gardner to approach Vega during their search for missing recruit Soranik Natu. Following the new policy of the Corps, Green Man was partnered to Stel, and together they patroled Sector 2828. Despite his best efforts, however, Green Man was dragged once again to the forbidden sector, this time not by his own free will: the Psions abducted him, and brought him to Wombworld, their research planet, in order to study him and the Power Ring. Freed by his friends from the Omega Men, the Green Lantern lived other adventures in the forbidden sector, crossing paths with the prisoner goddess X’Hal, with the golden skinned Tamaranians and many more, in a long quest to come back home. Whether the Guardians would have forgiven him this time or not, remained to be seen.

Green Man is a man who fought his entire life for the privilege of considering himself an individual being, a proud and determined corpsman who deeply values his newfound freedom. As an Uxorian, he’s an amphibian able to breathe also under water, he possesses limited telepathic abilities, and his blood is highly toxic and poisonous for most races; as a Green Lantern, his Power Ring allows him to fly, to survive in the void of space, and of course to create energy constructs fueled by the wielder’s willpower. An Uxorian like no others, and a Lantern like no others, Green Man treasures his status as a corpsman as to him it stands for his very individual existence…but his thirst for justice is even greater than his love for his new life, and he’s ready to sacrifice it all to do the right thing.

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