Ion: The Torchbearer

Can DC stop changing the name of its characters every five minutes??

Okay fine, technically these changes are taking place over a span of years and or decades, but for people like me (please tell me I’m not the only crazy one out there) who are reading 75 years worth of comics in a years’ time, it feels like things are constantly changing.

Ion picks up Kyle Rayner’s story after the events of Infinite Crisis, in which his ex-girlfriend Jade bestowed him with her own powers.  Her Starheart powers combine with his Green Lantern powers, making for a pretty damn unstoppable force.  Attempting to deal with these new abilities, Kyle takes some time off to figure out who he is.  During that time, he faces some unexplained blackouts.  At the same time, we see Kyle destroying entire populations and attacking fellow Green Lanterns.

Most of the story feels a bit dragged out, with the story shifting between Kyle on Earth and the destruction he’s seemingly causing in space.  Eventually he winds up on the planetary Green Lantern Mogo, where he meets visions of all of his dead ex-girlfriends, who each help him embrace his new powers…somehow.

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I’m honestly not too clear on what happened. They spew out some fortune cookie wisdom, kiss Kyle, and at the end of it he’s completely revitalized and knows exactly who he is.

Those must have been some pretty powerful smooches.

Around the same time that Kyle officially accepts the Ion identity, we learn that the Kyle who’s been floating around causing destruction was not, in fact, the real Kyle.

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Alex Nero, one of Kyle’s villains, was imbued with powers which allowed him to tap into Kyle’s, and in disguise he caused the massive death and destruction across various sectors.

Klye takes Nero, as well as his questions, to Oa, where he confronts the Guardians and basically demands to know what’s up.

The Guardians tell Kyle that they were testing him, and that he has been chosen to be “the torchbearer”, meaning that should the Guardians ever be destroyed (again), it will be up to him to bring them back (again).

They basically could have said, “Hey Kyle, remember that thing you did before? Well, we’re decided we want you to do it again, in case we die”.

Of course, the Guardians make it sound a lot grander that that, with a lengthy speech essentially spelling out Ion’s responsibilities within the Green Lantern Corps (as well as DC’s continuity).  No longer being used for standard Green Lantern duty, Ion will instead fill in where needed, with the more unusual cases that pop up.  I’m unsure how this may tie into the continuity as a whole, and I can’t help but wonder if the writers made this drastic change because they didn’t know what else to do with Kyle.  With the return of Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner, and John Stewart to active duty, the sector was getting a little crowded with GLs.  It’s too soon to tell what Kyle’s new role will entail, but at least so far it seems like it might be pretty interesting.

I just hope they lay off all of the grand proclamations from the Guardians.  Those little blue dudes annoy me to no end. I don’t even know why, they just do.

-Jess