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Superman’s New Era Would Have Worked Better with Green Lantern

Superman might have taken a fight directly to Mongul, but Green Lantern has a history with the warlord that would make the story a lot more personal.

While Superman’s mission to liberate the citizens of Warworld is a noble undertaking, the adventure would work far better with Green Lantern. Hal Jordan has a particularly notable past with Mongul and that may make the Lantern a much better adversary for the galactic despot than Superman.

Things have been difficult for the Man of Steel. Shortly after finding out that his body was experiencing cellular decay due to radiation poisoning, Superman discovered that the alien warlord Mongul and his Warworld was as active as ever. Knowing helpless beings were being forced to battle to the death, Superman left to liberate Warworld along with his new super-team, the Authority. The saga has seen the hero stripped to his most basic elements, but Superman’s long history with Mongul has put him in a position where Clark is finally fighting for truth and justice on an intergalactic scale.

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While there’s no doubt that Superman and Mongul have a complicated relationship, there’s one hero who may have an even more personal grudge against the villain. Green Lantern Hal Jordan was once attacked on a level few heroes have experienced when Mongul decimated his hometown of Coast City. The event caused Green Lantern to turn evil as Parallax after the stress of losing his home opened him up to being possessed by a fear entity. Even though Hal pulled himself back from the brink, he still blamed Mongul for the role he played in his Parallax days. In Green Lantern #7 by Geoff Johns and Carlos Pacheco, Hal’s fellow Lantern John Stewart informs his ally that Mongul was spotted in Sector 2814, causing Hal to immediately go after the villain. Despite Oliver reminding Hal that this isn’t the same Mongul, Green Lantern believes Mongul’s son is carrying on his father’s twisted legacy.


Sure, Mongul and Superman have a long bitter history with one another. After all, aside from his many acts of cruelty as a despot, one of his most infamous attacks on Superman was his use of the Black Mercy to trap the Man of Steel in a fantasy world. There’s no doubt that Mongul is a good antagonist for Superman. But when it comes to the ultimate liberation story involving the villain, perhaps Hal Jordan would be better suited for it.

Superman may have been routinely challenged by Mongul, but the warlord arguably had a much more sizable and long-lasting impact on the Green Lantern. By destroying Coast City, Mongul was able to make the ‘greatest’ Green Lantern feel enough fear to open himself up to possession. If there’s anyone with an interest in making sure Mongul stops his destructive influence for good, its Hal. Since the Green Lantern considers Mongul a symbol of fear, Hal going to Warworld to free its prisoners would strip the villain of his power and give Hal the closure he needs. Superman may be doing a fine job taking down Mongul for good, but it would be interesting to consider how the story could have been with Green Lantern instead.


Next: Marvel’s Ultimate Green Lantern Proves the Corps’ Fatal Flaw

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