The first twelve issues of The Green Lantern were, in a word, bananapants. Grant Morrison and Liam Sharp took Hal Jordan and the space police of the DCU, and sent them outside the universe to parallel worlds and deep inside of Hal’s ring. The book started with Hal arresting a creature that bears a strong resemblance to classical depictions of Christian God, sent him deep undercover with the fascist monster squad, and Sharp and Morrison eventually ended the first season of the book with Hal using a miracle machine to rewrite reality.
Since then, Morrison followed up the story with Green Lantern: Blackstars, the story of the world Hal created with his dark bride and Controller Mu’s evil mirror of the GLC. It wraps next week (spoilers: the evil Blackstars come up against Superman and the heroes of Earth), followed by Sharp’s return to Hal for The Green Lantern: Season Two. We had a chance to talk with Liam about season two, the overarching story of the three volumes, and the new, hip (?) Guardians coming in the next season. And we grabbed some gorgeous exclusive preview pages for you to check out.
This interview has been edited for clarity and to remove one TINY spoiler for the end of Blackstars.
Den of Geek: How are you approaching season 2 differently from how you came at season 1?
Liam Sharp: Season 2 ended up having to be shorter than the first season so Grant and I have responded by going all-out nuts with it, and basically having as much fun as it’s possible to have on a monthly! The season opener is about as epic as I’ve ever been, and I pushed myself incredibly hard on that one – I wanted it to be special. Issue 2 is strange and spooky and retro and spiky – kind of a horror-style Doctor Who vibe art-wise, with Grant providing a post-modern head-scratcher of a script. And issue 3 is all smoke and cloud and fog mixed with Top Gun, so I did that one in full color – it’s unlike anything else in the run so far. So yes, we’re freeing ourselves up to bring you the most creative and wild and, hopefully, fun book we can!
What’s the hardest part of effectively representing the free will vs control conflict visually? And will that continue to be the focus of season 2?
I think Hal has always been an agent for free will, even as he acts on behalf of the Guardians – mostly! When it comes down to the wire he puts freedom very high on the agenda, unless of course all existence is imperilled, at which point he seems to find the unlikely long-shot compromise… I always shoot for controlled chaos in my art!
How much space are you getting on character design for the Young Guardians? Will they still be these tiny Maltusians, or will they be drawn from the wider and largely bananas dc space mythology?
I get a ton of freedom to extrapolate from Grant’s suggestions, but I try to stay consistent to the the historical DNA of the Green Lantern mythos. That’s as true for the Young Guardians as it is for anything else across the run so far…
What have you seen if anything from Xermanico on Blackstars that’s adjusted what you’re doing on season 2? Anything he did that you said “oh shit, I’m taking that”?
I adored that series, but I’m sticking to the universe as we created it! That’s the nice thing about [EDITED FOR SPOILERS] but it’s subtle stuff!
Similarly, is there anything you’ve put into these books that you can’t wait to see someone else pick up and play with?
I loved seeing My version of Cheetah get used so prominently throughout the DC universe after my Wonder Woman run, so yes, it’s always fun to see what – if anything – survives beyond your run. We took the aliens back to looks that largely referenced their first appearances, and not bulked-up 90s versions, so it’ll be fun to see if that aesthetic continues. But honestly, as a comic creator I know that every new team hopes to bring their own look and feel to a book, just as we did, so I’m very circumspect around that kind of thing.
How do you top arresting god?
You’d have to round up and incarcerate ALL the gods and get them to decide on a fair set of rules that are mutually compatible across all life forms, at which point we might have an end to holy conflict. Wouldn’t that be nice?
Green Lantern: Blackstars #3 is on sale on January 29th, and Season Two begins February 12. For more on the entire Green Lantern Corps, stick with Den of Geek!