The DCEU has been criticized for its characters making movements unbecoming of heroes, but the toughest Green Lantern attack with his Power Ring is something that even the movies haven’t even tried to pull off because it’s too dark.
While DC comics heroes are no stranger to particularly brutal battles with their enemies, DC Extended Universe films have been criticized for their interpretations of heroes. From Superman killing Zod in Man of Steel to the number of Batman bodies in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, the DCEU has given its heroes some questionable characteristics. Some fans criticized the depictions of Batman and Superman in the DCEU as darker than usual in comics, while others defended these scenes as more nuanced views of heroism. Although the DCEU has adjusted course several times, it still has a reputation for less heroic versions of DC characters.
But the Green Lantern has one trick in his arsenal that shows that he is by no means a saint. In Green Lantern #4, Jeff Jones and Ethan Van Sciver call Hal from Oa to investigate a mysterious creature found at a military base. At the same time, Green Lantern’s old enemy, Hector Hammond, summons Jordan to discuss this creature and its significance to Earth. Hal goes to Hammond’s prison to interrogate him, but the villain wants something in exchange for his information. Hector asks Jordan for a memory that he can indirectly relive, and although this idea rejects him, Hal agrees. However, as soon as Green Lantern lets Hammond into his head, the villain tries to steal Jordan’s other memories. But Hal responds by using his ring to turn on the pain centers in Hammond’s brain to knock the information out of Hector.
While Hammond may have achieved this, seeing a comic hero support torture is still a shocking sight. Usually the Green Lantern Ring is used to create structures that help them in battles with villains, but the use of Hal, although effective, goes beyond that. Having figured out how to inflict as much pain on his opponent as possible, Hal may have found a move too dark for the DCEU.
One of the common ideas when it comes to comics is that heroes usually don’t stoop to low levels to defeat their enemies. Murder is largely prohibited, as is senseless violence or acts of revenge. And although the Green Lantern is not without flaws, it rarely resorts to such cruel tactics. Even when he’s fighting his most hated enemies, Hal is usually not the type to cause more pain than he should. But it’s obvious that Hector Hammond is no ordinary bad guy, and he definitely reveals the worst side of the Lantern. Jordan’s piercing attack shows that, if necessary, Lantern can use his ring to participate in some questionable interrogation techniques. It’s probably for the best that this Green Lantern move will remain in the comics, unless the DCEU wants to strengthen its grim reputation.