Graphic Audio Review: The Green Lantern: Hero's Quest By Dennis O'Neil, Based On The Series From DC Comics
Written by T. Michael Testi
Before I start, The Green Lantern: Hero's Quest is somewhat of a controversial story because it chronicles a parallel universe take on The Green Lantern and his history. I am not going to discuss the take on the story, but rather the quality of the story itself.
In this universe, the Kyle Rayner is a lazy slacker. He is an underachiever who lives in the basement of a disgusting building, and barely has food to eat. He is a graphic designer who has little hope for the future. One night, while at a nightclub, he goes out into the alley for some fresh air and is confronted by a little blue being who gives him a Green Lantern ring, and from there his life is changed forever.
Different from the other JLA Graphic Audio books I have reviewed here in the past, The Green Lantern: Hero's Quest is told in first person. In fact, at first, the way the book starts was a little shocking.
As the story went on, I became more comfortable with the difference and once again I was treated to a Graphic Audio performance that really brings you into the story. The combination of sound effects and artistic vocal performances creates what Graphic Audio calls a “Movie in your Mind” and is truly what The Green Lantern: Hero's Quest is.
When the Justice League of America (JLA) learns of the existence of a new super hero, they are concerned, and so one day Superman shows up at Kyle's apartment to determine his intent. Kyle is then invited to come to the JLA satellite to meet the other super heroes and is eventually invited to work with the JLA on a trial basis and is given a special button for being summoned.
Kyle receives a call to come to the JLA satellite, and as soon as he arrives the satellite disappears. He is now called into question by Batman about the disappearance. He now must determine if he is willing to take on the challenge to be a hero. To do so, he must take it upon himself to find out the origins of The Green Lanterns, find out what happened to Earth's original Green Lantern, Hal Jordan, and perhaps even save the universe.
As I said before this story is different from the others. While overall it is entertaining, it is a bit uneven and slow at times. But because it is character-driven, and is told from the first person point of view, you get real insight into the mind of Kyle Rayner. As the story goes on, you find that you are caught up and can't let go. Then of course there are the performances of the actors that give it that movie feel.
The quality of The Green Lantern: Hero's Quest and performance are the reason I will be coming back to Graphic Audio products. By using a whole cast — over 20 performers — you don't get one person trying to sound like many different voices, you get unique individual characters. It is this that makes it great.
You can also check out some of their other series as well. If you want you can listen to a sample, or purchase the GraphicAudio Book from their on-line Store. The story comes three ways: standard CD (the version I reviewed), MP3 CD, and downloadable WMA with digital rights management.