October 26, 2009

Blackest Night Speculation: The Don Hall Question

Note - the following is pure conjecture only, and will be slightly spoiling those who haven't read any of Blackest Night.

In all honesty, this was inspired by - of all things - a post-meetup conversation about comics.

Some of us after a Doctor Who meetup were talking comics, and we were discussing the merits of different series. One of them was, of course, Blackest Night, and various aspects of the series.

It was a way to introduce one of us who had not read the series into it. I had mentioned that I enjoyed it (being, obviously, zombies with power rings), and that there was not simply a "zombie eats brains" series, but that the Blackest Night was about people getting their hearts ripped out - figuratively and literally.

Then, someone asked, "Well, why wasn't Don Hall revived?"

Don Hall was half of Hawk and Dove, those ideologically-opposed brothers who fought crime (and which led to a sideline about Steve Ditko), but here's my observation.

Note this panel from Blackest Night # 1:

Note that, of all the heroes whom the black rings sought out...Don Hall was "at rest". At peace.

Another note from Blackest Night: Superman # 3 (slight spoiler) - there is the threat of reviving Jonathan Kent...but would it not make sense for the rings to automatically seek him out?

Therein, I think, lies one of the weakeness of the Black Lanterns, their color yellow, their Kryptonite - they can only seek out the "souls" of people who had very little conflict, or who had an essentially sense of "calm" about their lives.

Ralph & Sue Dibny...well, I'll just refer you to Identity Crisis. Not as tranquil as you would suggest.

Golden Age Superman (which one of us claimed could not be, because he's "the best of us") - here was a man who, during Infinite Crisis, watched powerlessly as his world had been sacrificed...for nothing. Who saw a world corrupted, and who decided (at some point) that he would work hard to bring back "his" earth.

Most (if not all) of the lives being revived had, at some point, some level of trauma and conflict in their lives. Some internal turmoil, some soap-opera level (but not quite Marvel level) dramatics.

But Don Hall? Jonathan Kent? Nowhere to be found, except at peace.

So probably, no Red Bee Black Lantern for us.

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