It’s Space Month here on Blastr, so it’s a perfect time to throw some appreciation at the greatest spacefaring law enforcement officials in the universe: the Green Lantern Corps! Powered by the emerald energy of willpower, the Green Lantern Corps has been defending the spaceways of the DC Universe since the concept was introduced in 1959 by John Broome and Gil Kane in Showcase #22, and their ranks have swelled since then.
While you’re no doubt familiar with many of the members that have been recruited from Earth, there are countless Lanterns hailing from planets across the cosmos that have put their lives on the line for the Corps. So today we’ll be looking past the humans (John, Kyle, Alan, Guy, Jessica, Hal and Simon, from best to worst, if you must know) who’ve worn the power ring to shine the viridian spotlight on 15 of the weirdest, wildest and most wonderful aliens ever to recite the oath.
Did your favorite Green Lantern escape our sight? Let us know your preferred ring-slingers in the comments below.
Abin Sur earns his spot on the list partially on home court advantage. He’s from the planet Ungara in Earth’s own Space Sector 2814, and as such he defended the Earth for nearly a hundred years without humans ever knowing it. He visited Earth several times throughout that time on various missions, but his most well-known visit was sadly his death, which saw his ring left in the hands of Hal Jordan. He was a well-respected member of the Corps during his tenure, despite his questioning of the Guardians’ authority, a tradition his predecessor would enthusiastically continue.
It’s hard to imagine pulling a worse sector beat than Space Sector 38, the home of the eternally warring planets New Genesis and Apokolips, the homeworlds of the New Gods and Darkseid, respectively. But being a native of Apokolips, Raker Qarrigat was assigned Sector 38, making it his job to try to keep Darkseid in line. Not long after being recruited, Raker came into direct conflict with Darkseid, who destroyed his hand and his ring. But Raker didn’t give up. He returned to Apokolips with a team of Lanterns, only to be ambushed by hordes of Parademons with a fresh coat of yellow paint on them, exploiting the rings’ weakness, and Raker was defeated once more. The Guardians then struck a tenuous truce with Darkseid to leave his sector, leaving Raker stranded on Apokolips. But he continued fighting against Darkseid and the oppression of Apokolips for years, long after the Corps was destroyed and he was forgotten.
Morro may not be the flashiest or most powerful of Green Lanterns, but he’s one of the most compassionate and devoted Corpsmen around. Hailing from a tribe of nomads native to a desert planet in the ominously designated Space Sector 666, Morro — along with his four dragon-like dratures, who he adopted after mistakenly killing their mother — quietly serves as the Corps’ cryptkeeper. On Oa, Morro stands guard over innumerable memorials he creates for each of the Corpsmen that have fallen in the line of duty.
Despite being largely incompetent, G’nort is a fan-favorite Green Lantern. He’s often played off for comic relief — particular in his early years as an ally of Justice League International and a member of the farcical Justice League Antarctica — but despite that, he’s fiercely motivated and loyal to his friends. His most notable friend is Green Lantern Guy Gardner of Earth, who he’s stuck by even when neither of them were Lanterns.
ROT LOP FAN
When Rot Lop Fan was recruited into the Green Lantern Corps, he ran into a small problem: he didn’t know what “green” or “lantern” meant. A member of an alien race native to the lightless area of space known as the Obsidian Depths, Rot Lop Fan is completely blind, instead depending entirely on his highly-evolved sense of hearing. So when Green Lantern Katma Tui recruited him, she helped him understand his new power in auditory terms, letting his “Green Lantern” become an “F-Sharp Bell” instead. Fan’s constructs form from sound waves rather than light, and he has used his unique abilities valiantly in service of the Corps.
Sector 1416’s Green Lantern Chaselon is a crystalline creature with thirteen senses from the planet Barrio III, and he’s lost more than most in the course of his service. His homeworld was harvested as a piece of Appa Ali Apsa’s Mosaic planet, and he was seemingly killed by Hal Jordan when he was possessed by Parallax, only to be found alive as a prisoner of Cyborg Superman. After being rescued and reinstated into the Corps, his partner and fellow Barrio III native Diamalon was killed in action by a Sinestro Corps sniper. Chaselon volunteered to become an Alpha Lantern (how he’s pictured above) and was eventually killed by the Black Lanterns. But he’s overcome death before, so it’s only a matter of time before Chaselon returns to the Corps, stronger than ever.
It’s not just Hawkmen and Hawkwomen that come from Thanagar; Green Lanterns do too. And Isamot Kol is no hawk, he's a Lizarkon — more or less a humanoid velociraptor — who was saved from execution by his power ring. Loathing cowardice, he had killed his commanding officer in the Rann-Thanagar who wished to surrender, led his unit to victory against the enemy, and then refused to lie about his actions. Isamot Kol has been one of the Corps’ most valuable warriors since his recruitment, continuing to fight on even after losing all his limbs during a mission.
Being a Green Lantern isn’t brain surgery, but even if it was, Soranik Natu could still do it. A neurosurgeon on Korugar, Katma Tui was in the middle of surgery when her power ring chose her, and she immediately used it to save the life of her patient. Unfortunately for her, Green Lanterns are hated on Korugar, thanks to the years of oppression at the hands of Sinestro, her hated father. But Soranik overcame her preconceived notions of the Corps to become one of the preeminent Lanterns of the reborn Corps, notably against her father’s forces during the Sinestro Corps War.
Like Chaselon, the sentient robot from the planet Grenda has sacrificed above and beyond for the Corps. After retrieving vital intel that would eventually lead the Corps to victory, Stel was killed by the Guardian Krona. This wouldn’t last long, as his successor Yron used his final burst of willpower to bring Stel back to life just in time to save Grenda from an invasion. He was one of the first to rejoin the Green Lantern Corps following its destruction at the hands of Parallax, and has since found himself obliterated on more than one occasion, but never enough to prevent him from pulling himself back together again to continue the fight.
Proving that Rocket Raccoon doesn’t have a monopoly on being a talking arboreal mammal in space, Ch’p is one of several squirrel-esque H’lvenites to have been recruited into the Green Lantern Corps. Ch’p was already leading the fight against an invasion of his home planet by the forces of the evil Doctor Ub’x when he was given the power ring of his predecessor who’d died fighting the invasion. Ch’p used his new powers to stop Ub’x and was quickly whisked away to train on Oa, where was part of the same class of recruits as Hal Jordan, who he became good friends with. Ch’p was one of a handful of Lanterns that temporarily lived on Earth, though he was later re-assigned to Mosaic on Oa, where he is killed. A staunchly loyal friend to some of the greatest Green Lanterns, Ch’p proved that size doesn’t matter, especially when it comes to Green Lanterns.
Before Katma Tui was a Green Lantern, she spent most of her time fighting one. That Green Lantern was Sinestro, tyrant of her homeworld of Korugar. Katma Tui was the leader of the rebellion against Sinestro, and after freeing her home and dethroning him, was chosen as his replacement by the Guardians. This forced her to become an exile among her people, who hated the Lanterns, but she became a decorated Lantern anyway, and even fell in love with one from Earth, John Stewart. Sadly, she was killed by Star Sapphire, but remains a fondly-remembered member of the Corps.
The Guardians may think they’re running the show, but the real brains of the Green Lantern Corps is Salaak. A detached, coldly logical, and endlessly dependable four-armed alien from the planet Slyggia, Salaak is a veteran Green Lantern that has served with distinction, but more recently has taken on a more administrative role within the Corps. Salaak often acts as mission control, I.T., and Corps historian all in one, and does so with a calm efficiency. Must be all the hands.
A decorated Green Lantern from our neighbor Space Sector 2813, Tomar-Re was a former scientist who was the first to welcome Hal Jordan into the Green Lantern Corps, and was a close ally of both him and John Stewart. He’s primarily known for two missions, one of which was a failure and the other a resounding success. The former was Tomar’s attempt to save Krypton from exploding, while the latter was his role in exposing Sinestro’s abuses of the people of Korugar, leading to his expulsion from the Corps. He served in the Green Lantern’s Honor Guard, and eventually was killed in action during the Crisis on Infinite Earths, but his legacy carries on in the form of his son, Tomar-Tu, who grew up to join the Corps himself.
There may have been another living planet hogging the news cycle recently, but the biggest Green Lantern, the planet called Mogo, doesn’t care for socializing anyway. Mogo is the epitome of a gentle giant, fearing the effect his gravitational field would have on other planets if he ever tried to visit them, though in times of crisis, the Corps will call on Mogo to take on a more active role. But the reason he’s number two is because of the very important job he performs for the Corps: guiding the rings to new recruits. Quite simply, without Mogo, there would be no new Green Lanterns.
What makes Kilowog deserving of the greatest extraterrestrial Green Lantern there is? Well for one thing, he trained most of the other guys on this list. Kilowog is not only the Green Lantern of Space Sector 674, he’s also the Corps’ beloved drill sergeant, tasked with instructing each poozer — his name for new recruits — on how to effectively wield the unlimited power of the Green Lantern power ring. Kilowog’s job requires him to have both a no-nonsense attitude and a lot of compassion, and it has earned him more respect than any other member of the Corps. Before any Lantern was the best, they were just one of Kilowog’s poozers.