Green Lantern #39, part one of "Agent Orange"Starting with next month’s Green Lantern #39, readers will get a look at the greed-focused Orange Lanterns and their leader, the "Agent Orange" character named Larfleeze, through the artwork of Philip Tan .
The artist, who impressed DC fans with his work on Final Crisis: Revelations, has been sharing his designs for the Orange Lanterns here on Newsarama over the last few months. Now, as we celebrate the green of St. Patrick's Day, we talk to Tan again about his upcoming work on Green Lantern with writer Geoff Johns.
Exploring the idea that emotions hold energy that can be harnessed with power rings -- with the Green Lanterns controlling the central green-colored energy of willpower -- the Green Lantern title has been revealing the various colors of the emotional spectrum and their ring-wearing corps. It's all leading toward Blackest Night, an epic summer event by Johns and artist Ivan Reis that promises to see deceased DC characters rise from the earth wearing black rings as the universe is embroiled in a War of Light between all the ring-wearing factions.
The previously unseen Orange Lanterns utilize the power of avarice, and as Tan has pointed out before, their focus on greed has made them "grotesque." They "look like predators," he said, and are "very hunting based," although he didn't want to explain too much about their looks, as it ties into the story of the Orange Lanterns.
The storyline will also focus on Agent Orange, the group's leader, who has been revealed to have a relationship to the Guardians of Oa. Described in solicitations as "the most disgusting, filthiest, vilest being in the universe," Agent Orange has been hidden away in the Vega System until now.
As Tan opens his sketchbook to reveal a few more of his many designs for these Orange Lanterns, we talked to the artist about these creatures of greed who wield the power of orange as the title heads toward Blackest Night.
do NOT call him "Tusky"Newsarama: In the first design, what can you tell us about this creature? Are those horns on his head?
Philip Tan: Yes, but more like overgrown tusks. As you may have noticed, a lot of the creatures [who are Orange Lanterns] rarely show the usual lantern powers of creating weapons. They are really more about using what they naturally have to devour their targets and the rings just amplifies their potential.
What Geoff has always had in mind from day one is that these creatures are going to be so greedy that it's almost just about "eating" or "taking" from other lights. Hmmm... that might be giving too much away. [laughs]
NRAMA: All of these creatures look like they're glowing. Is that just the power of the orange rings they're wearing? Or is there more to it?
PT: Absolutely more to it! But I wouldn't want to ruin the fun. And besides, I think that technically, I could point out that pretty much all the types of lanterns we have seen so far have an aura of color around them.
a familiar face?NRAMA: This second creature has multiple appendages. What are those? And what can you tell us about this humanoid looking character?
PT: Well, this one is interesting. This was supposed to be one of the first characters I wanted to change into an Orange Lantern. Maybe a familiar face? [laughs] But now I am not sure if that is a go, and besides, he kind of looks like one of my favorite comic villains. But it's really a very spideresque-inspired look, a creature that I thought could very possibly be in the Vega system since the GL Corps had to deal with the Spider Guild in there before, and who knows what can come out of their ranks?
NRAMA: This third creature has holes in his back. What's his story?
PT: The idea was to have trapping hooks that come out of those to get the prey, at least that is the basic idea of that alien creature.
them holes are for the hooks, sonNRAMA: Like so many of the designs you've shown us, he's holding out that orange ring like an enticing beacon. Is that an important element of a lot of the Orange Lanterns?
PT: Yes, it is quite common in looks for the Orange Lanterns, although not all of them. But you will see their "lures" often.
NRAMA: With your first issue of the storyline coming up next month, is there anything you want to tell readers about your work on the Agent Orange story in Green Lantern?
PT: I really just can't wait to get feedback from readers on the visuals and the "world" we designed and redesigned. Hopefully I can finally please some readers with my work [laughs] ... not perfect yet, but I'd like to think I am getting better. And I can't wait for everyone to see how the work I'm doing interacts with the epic storyline Geoff has been weaving already!Previously: First Look: Orange Lanterns by Philip Tan Painting it Orange: More Orange Lanterns from Philip Tan Three More Orange Lanterns by Philip Tan Power of Orange: Philip Tan & Three More Orange Lanterns More Orange: Philip Tan Shows Off More Orange Lanterns