Monday, July 16, 2007

Why does this piss me off so much?

I've been reading through the 1500 blog posts I missed over the weekend, and I just found the umpteenth post whining about Kyle.

I don't know why this pisses me off so much. Maybe because its a story idea that I like, and I'd been hoping for earlier in Johns run. Its a story I've been wanting to see, because this is Kyle's biggest fear. This is the one of those things that has haunted since the beginning of his career, the idea that he might end up like Hal did. Its something the character needs to go through, and to be honest I don't like the Uber-Kyle a lot of fans are attached to. Ion works temporarily, but really I prefer the character with his ring.

I also prefer the character as the lesser powered person in a situation. The best Kyle stories are Kyle as the underdog. Kyle started out facing fully-Parallaxed Hal. He had to face him his first week with absolutely no help. He came up with this unbelievably crazy idea of destroying the planet both characters were standing on, and Parallax is so thrown he lets Kyle through the mass purging of the entire Green Lantern mythos.

A little while later, Ganthet tries to fire him, and Parallax shows up again, scares off Ganthet, beats the shit out of the JLA, beat the shit out of Kyle and takes his ring. Kyle pops back up, powerless, armed by only a lead pipe and knocks Parallax over the head. There's some talking between Hal, Kyle and Ganthet. Hal decides that beating up Kyle is like the Hulk wearing cleats to step on a kitten and the situation defuses. (This one actually works really well with the fearbug retcon, because you can interpret it was Hal coming back to control for a short time.)

In JLA he had to overcome his awe and nervousness save the universe multiple times. Morrison's DC One Million crossover forced Kyle to hold together an exploding sun. He needed a pep talk from batman first.

In Rebirth, he's at death's doorstep and he keeps moving forward because he has to.

I like Kyle.

No, I love Kyle. He's one of my absolute favorite characters in the DC stable.

But I thought Ion was killing him. Both times. My Kyle is the toughest guy in the universe, but not nearly the most powerful. My Kyle is loaded with self-doubt, hesitation, and fear. My Kyle is often outgunned, outmatched, and overpowered by the energy.

My Kyle pushes past that to triumph anyway.

I am enjoying the hell out of this story, because Sinestro Corps was the beginning of a story about My Kyle. He was out of his element, he was alone, he was outnumbered, he was overpowered, and he was at the end of his rope. He faltered, just enough, to get into real trouble from there.

This happened in the first issue. This always happens to Kyle. The best stories are when he gets through that and wins in the end.

I can understand being pissed when this crossover is over and done with, if Kyle is a passive little victim who needs to be saved completely by Hal. But seriously, we're in the opening shots here and right now it fits the pattern of a really good Kyle Rayner story perfectly.

I don't see how these so-called devoted Kyle fans aren't seeing that. That's why I did the writer poll, because while Johns is a very intense writer, this isn't a pattern that only he uses. Marz and Morrison wrote this pattern. They set up the Kyle fears, falters, then comes back to win pattern. Kelly continued it. Honestly, the only writer who had his hands on the character for a significant amount of time but didn't do that was Judd Winick, and I believe that's why I despise his run so much. That wasn't My Kyle. I figured the people who hated the crossover must've joined during his run.

Johns, though he doesn't use him often, writes Kyle the way I know and love him. Its Johns style, so its melodramatic and the pacing's off. the jokes change from writer to writer, sure. but personality-wise and story-role-wise this is My Kyle. This is the Green Lantern I started with. This is the Green Lantern who brought me into Green Lantern. This story fits the pattern, and it promises to put an end to the Ion nonsense.

I'm really enjoying this story, and I'd love to be able to enjoy it without people shitting on it for particularly stupid complaints. That's why I'm so irritated with them. I've not been going through Kyle-withdrawal for the past two months. I've been going through Kyle withdrawal for a full year, dammit, and I've finally gotten this character back after all that time and I want to enjoy it dammit.

Now, someone's about to come here and say I'm trying to censor Kyle complaints or tell you to stop complaining about Kyle. No, I'm not. You are perfectly free to think that Kyle has been ruined and this is all some juvenile Hal-fan revenge for Emerald Twilight.

I, however, am perfectly free to say you're a fucking idiot who obviously has never read a Kyle Rayner story in your life (Winick's run doesn't count, that wasn't Kyle. Though, as Kalinara pointed out once, it was sadly the most in-character Winick's ever written a DC property), or that you are whiny, panicky, annoying, and shitting on a perfectly good storyline and a writer that I happen to like.

And I will, whether you're normally an idiot or just a panicky Kyle fan who is otherwise sensible but is too damned spooked over Bart's death to see things my way. Because I have an extra-stressful real life right now, I've been relaxing by reading and discussing this storyline because I'm really enjoying this storyline, and complaints along the lines of "They're going to KILL Kyle" are really fucking annoying me more than they normally would.

It would be one thing if the complaint was over art or pacing (Johns-pacing is really freaking weird) or dialogue or mood, but this gloom and doom shit isn't cutting it as a justifiable concern.

I will also use this blog to alienate and deride anyone who shits on my good mood whenever I feel the need to, because that's what an internet blog is for anyway.


  1. Now now, Ragnell...stop being so darned polite and tell us how you REALLY feel. *snerk*

    Seriously however, you make a very good point. We are at the beginning of the story...and already people are having heart attacks. There are quite a few issues to go still, and most of the story still to be told. So LET the damned story be told and THEN piss and moan about it, if you still see the need.

    I like Kyle. Kyle is sweet and humble and occasionally a dingbat...but that's part of his charm. All...ALL of the other GL's like him, and considering the usually good-natured bickering that goes on, that's saying something. Kyle will come through this and be stronger in the end.

    I trust in Geoff Johns.

  2. I've been in a similar mood when I'm enjoying the beginning of a story and people are complaining about a plot point as if it's the conclusion. It's like a bunch of kids jumping up and down in the backseat yelling "Are we there yet?" when you're just trying to enjoy the ride.

    Turn up the radio and drown 'em out. (If that doesn't work, disable the childproof locks and start making fast turns.)

  3. Hi, Ragnell-- my apologies for contacting you here...please contact me regarding your story for the RUINS anthology.

    Eric Reynolds

  4. *slow claps like the end of Lucas*