WB has finally released worthwhile information about the Green Lantern Corps film scheduled to hit theaters in 2020. To cut to the quick, it is confirmed to be a Hal Jordan and John Stewart film, as many expected, described as “Lethal Weapon in space.”
According to Deadline.Com:
“They’ve set David Goyer to write the script with Justin Rhodes for Green Lantern Corps, with Goyer producing and with DC heads Geoff Johns and Jon Berg exec producing.
The focus will be on two characters: Hal Jordan and John Stewart. The latter is an African American Marine sniper before he joined the Lantern Corps and the story very much focuses on his relationship with Jordan and the Corps. The story was conceived by Goyer and Johns.”
Readers may know that my positive feelings toward Green Lantern, John Stewart, and DC Comics in general have dissipated, so the question is does this news reinvigorate my interest in them? The answer is “no,” and I have a couple of reasons why.
First of all, the DC Cinematic Universe (or DCEU as I believe WB likes to call it) is an utter joke that I have no interest in. All of the movies that have been a part of it have been abominable, and I don’t care to see more.
Also, I don’t trust any of the people that have been mentioned to be working on this project. Geoff Johns and David Goyer are the ones who presented Blade the Vampire Hunter as an asexual who steadily got the focus moved off him in favor of white characters, initially Ryan Reynolds and Jessica Biel in the (terrible) third film, and then some white woman in the Blade TV show. While you can argue that Blade wouldn’t be much without Goyer backing him, and you’d probably even be right, that still doesn’t mean his usage of the character, or the films themselves, are laudable.
Black characters are very, very rarely presented as what I call 100% heroes. They are often one half a hero, three fourths a hero if you’re lucky, and usually much less. What I mean by this is that they rarely get what real heroes in fiction get, which is to be the focus, to save the day, and to get love stories and worthwhile characterization.
I moved away from John Stewart because I realized he will never be a 100% hero, and I’m done settling for less. Goyer and Johns have track records of presenting black heroes as… I’d say 37% heroes at best. Their black characters are frequently overshadowed by white ones, even when the black characters are supposed to be the focus (again, see the Blade TV show). In Geoff Johns’ run of Green Lantern, John Stewart is about a 7% hero. With the presence of Hal Jordan in this upcoming Green Lantern Corps film, things are set up perfectly for John Stewart to yet again be a… oh 40% hero at best. I guarantee he will not be a 100% hero.
I don’t have time for that stuff anymore. I set off to work on my own project, ZATSWAN: MULTIVERSAL GUARDIAN, to make things the way I’d like to see them, because I realized waiting for a bunch of white guys–who have no interest in seeing what I’d like–to make something that would truly satisfy me would just cause me to continually throw my hands in the air in frustration.
I am of the view that a character like John Stewart is a trap, because I will never be satisfied with him, and I will not be going back to him, ever. As Zatswan comes out, and readers can see more of it for themselves, I think my position will make more sense to them. Why bother with John Stewart, a 35% hero at best, when you can have a better character in a better story who is a 100% hero?
That said, if you still want to be into John Stewart, that’s fine. If you’re okay with him being a 35% hero, constantly shoved behind white characters, in a white franchise overcrowded with characters vying for attention, being written and controlled by a bunch of white guys who definitely don’t have his best interest in mind, more power to you. But if I see you on a message board or in a comments section somewhere complaining about the situation, while monetarily supporting it, you will lose credibility in my eyes, because that’s what you signed up for. You would only have yourself to blame for continuously sticking with that arrangement and supporting it.