And Then I Read: GREEN LANTERN 1 (on my phone!)

Image © DC Comics, Inc.

I’ve been holding off on reading the relaunched GREEN LANTERN because I missed getting the first issue. Then I thought, here’s a good opportunity to try reading an entire comic on my phone. When I got my iPhone six months ago, I downloaded the DC Comics app and looked at a few free comics, but decided reading comics on a phone didn’t really work for me. Now I’m more used to reading things on the phone, so I decided to give it a try. I downloaded the issue after paying $1.99, and spent about 15 minutes reading it.

The experience is somewhat different from reading a printed comic. It’s more directed, and you usually can’t see more than a panel or part of a panel at a time. But I found the experience a pretty good one overall. I had no trouble reading the lettering. The directed path takes you close to a section to read balloons or captions, then pulls back to see any areas of the panel cut off in the closer view, or slides to another part of the panel for any other balloon or caption to read next, then back for the wider view. You need to tilt the phone sideways for wide panels, or back to vertical for tall ones. Areas outside the panel were black in most places, making it easy to focus on the story. There were no ads inside the story itself, just one at the end, which I liked a LOT. As a long-time comics reader, I kind of missed seeing a shot of each full page first (you only get them in thumbnail views), but otherwise it was quite involving, and I probably paid more attention to the details of the art than I do when reading a print comic. Really not a bad experience, and I might do more, but I think an iPad would be a better platform for reading comics than a phone.

So, how was the story? Quite good! Geoff Johns is messing with Hal Jordan (and his readers) by taking Hal’s ring away, putting him back on Earth, and watching him try to cope. Meanwhile, Sinestro has been allowed by the Guardians to keep Hal’s ring, and sent off to Korugar to “police his sector.” Trouble is, Korugar is being terrorized by the Sinestro Corps that he put in place there, who aren’t going to accept him as a Green lantern rather than a Yellow one. Yep, he’s squirming, too. Johns and artist Doug Mahnke (with several inkers) are doing a wonderful job with Sinestro, probably inspired by the fine performance of Mark Strong in that role in the movie. Of course, they handle Hal well, too. The art is hyper-realistic, reminding me of Brian Bolland’s work, though Mahnke certainly has his own style. I like it a lot. His Carol Ferris is also fine, and he does a great job with alien creatures, always important on this title.

Highly recommended, in any format!


4 thoughts on “And Then I Read: GREEN LANTERN 1 (on my phone!)

  1. Kelly

    Hi Todd,
    Great to hear a seasoned pro enjoying the medium in digital as well.
    I had the same beef with not seeing the whole page/composition, but luckily in the app’s options you can switch that. I have my phone and tablet set to view the page at the start and at the end of a i can appreciate the whole layout/storytelling going on.

    Oh..and Thanks for this blog, your thoughts on comics and your insight into your life and process are joys to read.


  2. Patrick Gaffney

    Just to 2nd what kelly said. if you go into the settings on any of the comicology made apps, you can change the settings to show you the full page entering or exiting a page. In my opinion, turning those on make it much more like reading a printed comic.

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