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Wednesday, June 26, 2013 

The letter pages from Green Lantern #32 vol. 3

Now, here's the 2 letter pages from issue 32 of Green Lantern's 3rd volume in 1992, and this time I guess I'll post both of them in full, since there is a lot to ponder no matter the standings. But regardless, there's at least two writers here whose replies to an earlier story where Hal Jordan beats down Guy Gardner really make me furious:
I must have walked into the Twilight Zone. "Hal is boring compared to Guy", and "the real brain-damaged fool"? Sheer brilliance. "Jordan is a whiner" and "lame-o"? Oh, that's cute. But nothing can quite top the ill-feeling that comes from his saying "I hope they [Guy and Lobo] wrap Hal's entrails around his grey temples". I came away from reading that feeling more than a bit disgusted. What did they even get into reading comics for if they reject certain characters from the outset? And why be so rude about a man who doesn't even exist in real life and can't be faulted for the storyline they put him in?

And again, no mention of the writer at the time, Gerard Jones, who's almost completely non-existent in their correspondence. If there's anybody those so-called GL fans should be annoyed at, it's Jones, if they think he wronged Gardner on the way to giving him his own solo book, and even editor Kevin Dooley, if he had any influence over this storyline. I wonder how they'd react if Kyle Rayner were the one who defeated Guy in combat, or vice-versa?

Of all the examples of childish "opining" I've been able to find in the letter pages of my pamphlet collection so far, this has got to be one of the worst. Instead of arguing that Jones' story disappointed them and that they disapproved of how Jones set Guy up to be defeated and all but booted from the GL Corps, they reduced it all to a mentally adolescent assault on Hal out of absurdist jealously that he would be victor in the battle.

May God help me if I ever succumb to that kind of juvenile mindset ever again. As mad as I am at those correspondents for failing to put the blame where blame is due, the one I'm most mad at is myself, recalling my own mistakes, even if it was only a handful of characters from either or both DC and Marvel whom I'd slammed ultra-cheaply nearly 2 decades ago. I feel so stupid for that. I am so glad that since then - especially since 2004 - I've been trying to change my approach. I can look at myself in the mirror much better that way. And it'd probably be fair to assume that maybe the people who'd written to DC back in the day did too. If they did rework their approach and not ignore the famous words of Mark Gruenwald, nor the fact that there's no bad characters, only bad writers, then they could be forgiven for the mistakes they made in the past. But for now, there's no way to tell if, like me, they ever came to their senses.

And I just can't believe how the medium got hijacked by these very same people who wrote those very degrading, childish letters, only caring about what they think, and laying the blame on the easiest scapegoats, the fictional characters, otherwise failing to recognize the writer is the one to blame.

Update: and since Jones is a subject here, it should be noted that in late 2016, he was arrested for child porn possession, and got a 6 year prison sentence. Any chance the same people who failed to criticize him before are willing to do so now?

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About me

  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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