365 Reasons to Love Comics #83
Green Lantern Week concludes here! There are a metric ton of awesome GLs left to discuss, and I had the difficult decision of narrowing it down to one. Like all cool GLs, it’s a weird and crazy idea. Possibly the weirdest.
83. Rot Lop Fan
The GLC has a ton of interesting characters with fantastic designs. I love Tomar-Re, Salakk, Katma Tui, Medphyll the tree guy, Raker the lost GL of Apokolips, Galius Zed the giant head, Larvox the… weird thing, and all the rest. The Green Lantern Corps is a wonderful idea and home to hundreds of bizarre concepts. For that, I am eternally grateful for its creation.
Today’s featured GL is Rot Lop Fan, who, as far as I know, appeared in but one story, written by Alan Moore and drawn by Bill Willingham. He’s a Green Lantern, but one that exists in a starless cosmos, and so his people have no concept of light. Katma Tui attempts to recruit him but finds “Green” and “Lantern” impossible to translate. Thinking creatively, she asks Rot Lop Fan to imagine a bell– and inducts him into the F-Sharp Bell Corps. Rot Lop Fan uses sound like Green Lanterns use light– it’s all energy, after all, and Rot Lop Fan turns sound waves into solid constructs. In that way, he’s a Green Lantern who has never heard of the Green Lanterns.
His oath is pretty funny. Instead of the usual:
“In brightest day, in blackest night,
no evil shall escape my sight.
Let those who worship evil’s might
beware my power: Green Lantern’s light!”
Rot Lop Fan says:
See, this is why Alan Moore is brilliant and we are but peons.
However, this cool dude has only appeared in a scant few group shots since. C’mon, writers! It’s a great concept! Let Rot Lop Fan appear again in some kind of substantial role! It could lead to amazing and humorous consequences. Good ideas can live on their own, sure, but ideas like this one should not be left at the side of the road to fend for themselves. Let Rot Lop Fan ring his bell again.
You can read the original story at Scans Daily, and may have done so already (it’s in the same post as the Mogo story I referred you to earlier). I’d link you to the detailed history, but the story is pretty much it.
As we’ve seen this week, “Green Lantern” is a storytelling engine with endless possibilities, and can constantly revamp itself and introduce new and decidedly diverse ideas to the mythos without skipping a beat. That alone is a Reason to Love Comics. Oh yeah.
That’s it for this theme week. Sorry to those who expected Alan Scott, or John Stewart, or Kyle Rayner, or Hal bloody Jordan, or Abin Sur, or Arisia, or whoever. I’d rather have Rot Lop.