DC’s New 52 initiative has garnered mixed reactions for the main Green Lantern title. Sinestro is wearing green, Hal Jordan has no ring, the Guardians are evil, and Black Hand returned to... death. However, perhaps the most ground shaking change was introducing the new Green Lantern of Earth: Simon Baz. As a person of color, I couldn’t be happier that there’s another minority character at the helm of a Green Lantern book joining African-American John Stewart and half-Mexican Kyle Rayner.
However, there still is something missing from my Green Lantern books that DC should be paying more attention to: female Lanterns.
I’m a vocal supporter of racial and gender equality so while I’m happy and grateful that the new Green Lantern of Earth is Lebanese, I’m a bit disappointed that the ring didn’t choose Simon’s sister Sira. This was a missed opportunity by DC to make history and bring in the first female Green Lantern of Earth. Sure, Kyle Rayner handed a ring to Jade for a short while, but she’s primarily channeled power from the Starheart like her father, Alan Scott. To DC’s credit, they’ve done well with the five boys--there’s two people of Caucasian descent, an African-American, a half Latino-American and now a Lebanese-American--but it’s about time we saw some Earth women in control of the rings.
Who would the Corps recruit? Sira Baz looks like she’s cut from the same cloth as Simon: loyal to family and not easily scared. This is purely a realm of hypotheticals, but Lois Lane has the stones to interview Lex Luthor, put him in his place and then walk out of the interview without breaking a sweat. There’s not a person, metahuman or superpowered battle on Earth she’s too scared to face down. My real hope? Amanda Waller. The woman who ran Cadmus, gave orders with authority, takes crap from no one, and has stared down Batman, arguably the most intimidating human alive.
Even better, I am completely confident in Geoff Johns’ ability to build a new female character with a compelling backstory and complex characterization. Recruiting a female Green Lantern of Earth is important for DC’s commitment for gender diversity, and will help offset a dearth of prominent females in the GL universe since The New 52 era began. Think about it: Laira was recruited to the Red Lanterns and promptly killed, Boodika recently died in the Alpha-War, Katma Tui is still dead, Jade doesn’t exist in the New 52 yet, and Arisia Rrab disappeared inexplicably post-Flashpoint along with Soranik Natu. One female Green Lantern from Earth in the 53-year publishing history of the Corps should exist, especially in a time when there’s no other prominent female wearing a GL ring.
Stay nerdy, my friends.