I should state at the onset that I know nothing about all the factors involved for a company, like Warner Brothers, to continue making an animated television show, like Green Lantern: The Animated Series, based on one of the comic-book properties it owns, Green Lantern, airing on one of the cable channels it owns, The Cartoon Network. What I do know, as will anyone who watches this Blu-ray available from Warner Archive, is unfortunately just being a very good show wasn’t enough.
All 26 episodes are evenly divided across two discs, which is how the major story arcs of the series were divided. The first 13, which were previously reviewed when they were released on DVD, told of Earth’s Green Lantern Hal Jordan (Josh Keaton) leading Bolovax Vik’s Green Lantern Kilowog (Kevin Michael Richardson), Red Lantern Razer (Jason Spisak), and the Interceptor‘s artificial intelligence, dubbed Aya (Grey DeLisle), against the villain Atrocitus and his army of Red Lanterns, who were preparing for war against the Guardians of the Universe.
In the second half of the season, Hal and his team must fight against the planet-eating Anti-Monitor. Assisting the villain are Manhunters, robots whose corrupted programming cause them to kill beings with emotions. Fans of the comics should be delighted to see the addition of Green Lanterns Guy Gardner (Diedrich Bader), Hal’s replacement on Earth; Sinestro (Ron Perlman), Hal’s mentor, who may not be deserving of Hal’s idolization; and Ch’p, who is a squirrel.
Also introduced is Larfleeze, an Orange Lantern powered by avarice. Unfortunately, the characterization suffers from being too similar to Gollum from the Lord of the Rings. LANOS, the new AI on the Interceptor, has a similar problem as his annoyingly cheerful attitude brings to mind Eddie, the shipboard computer from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
The writing is the series greatest asset as the episodes deliver engaging stories, evolving characters, and good humor. “Cold Fury” contains a smart. unexpected twist when a character’s sacrifice leads to the rise of a new villain. “Steam Lantern” offers what appears to be a steampunk version of the character when Hal is transported to an alternative universe where steam is a power source.
The Blu-ray is presented in 1080p/MPEG-4 AVC encoded transfer with an aspect ratio of 1.78:1. Although the bulky character design leaves a bit to be desired, the computer graphics look brilliant. The artwork is filled with vibrant colors and inky blacks. The detail is as sharp as intended and the artists found ways to create some depth in the 2D images. Other than some minor banding, there’s nothing to complain about. The DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 delivers clear dialogue and satisfying effects that show off the track’s dynamic range during the frequent battles.
While it’s unfortunate the producers and executives couldn’t find a way to continue it, at least there’s 26 episodes of the Green Lantern: The Animated Series to enjoy. I highly recommend it to fans of superheroes.