Monday, December 8, 2014

Review: Green Lantern: TAS "Lost Planet"

The villains are forgettable, the planet terrain is generic, the twist of the story only works the first time you see it... and yet I wouldn't mind watching this episode again. Well, certain parts of this episode.

Two words.

Saint. Walker.

I freakin' love this guy.

Saint Walker is one of the best things about this show. I've always really liked affable tricksters.

God, no.
I mean tricksters that are just very... well, calm. It could be the devil as an old man making mysterious promises. The Cheshire Cat slowly floating through the air as he tells riddles. Heck, even Mr. Mxyzptlk can get in on the act from time to time, when he slows down for a bit. I really like the idea of a mysterious stranger who seems to casually bend the idea that walking is something best done on the ground. And the idea that such an unnerving sort of character is not only benevolent, but sounds like David Hyde Pierce just creates this charming masterpiece of a character that I absolutely adore. (And it's a very good impression that Phil Morris does. I honestly thought he was voiced by Pierce the first time I watched this.)

I honestly wish that Saint Walker had Razer's role. When Razer makes smart remarks, it can be kind of grating. But Saint Walker is an absolute treat in the same vein as Abe Sapien from the Hellboy films. Still, at least he comes back down the line.

The villains each had one character trait. Evil Klingon, creepy mute, and the robot fetishist. They're not very important, despite the time spent dealing with them, so let's cut to the heart of the episode.

This episode is based on the Alan Moore short story "Mogo Doesn't Socialize." As in "the V for Vendetta comic" Alan Moore. Loosely based. As in "the V for Vendetta film" loosely based.

The major plot elements are there, but tweaked to put the main focus on the main characters, which is pretty forgivable. The fact that this episode isn't named "Mogo Doesn't Socialize" makes the changed plot elements much easier to forgive. The original story is about an alien tracking down Mogo to kill him, only to discover that Mogo was the planet he landed on. To be honest, there's not a lot of meat to that story. To also be honest, there's not a lot of meat to "Lost Planet" either.

Honestly, if it weren't for Saint Walker, I'd have to recommend avoiding this episode. It's not bad, per se, but... this is just such an empty episode. They fail to stop an asteroid, they get ambushed for half the episode, then they rescue Mogo. When you take out the Saint Walker stuff, there just isn't much there.

But, you know, it's funny. The original plot to this episode involved all the main characters going on vision quests for each of their character subplots. In the finished episode, only Razer and Kilowog ended up dealing with their inner turmoil. According to the writing staff, giving everyone a vision quest was just too much plot for one episode, which confuses me. Because in the finished product, there was barely any plot.

Oh, well. That's life. I'm going to follow Saint Walker's example and reassure myself that all will be well.

Next time, Razer returns to the Red Lanterns. As an ally? An enemy? See you then.

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