In 2007, Larfleeze made his much anticipated debut in Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern series. Since the initial Agent Orange storyline, Larfleeze has gone on to become a fan favorite and appear in some of DC’s major crossover events, video games and cartoons. It was only a matter of time before the greediest character in the DCU appeared in his own solo title.
The first issue of Larfleeze picks up with the titular character in a new status quo. He has a butler servant, accidentally destroyed his possessions, including his power battery, and is only minutes away from dying in space. At first, this status quo is a little jarring due to the fact that he appeared recently in Green Lantern and appeared to be his normal self, but it is nothing that scares away new readers. If anything, this crazy new status quo welcomes new readers as it sets up the ridiculous ambitions of Larfleeze as he attempts to reclaim what was formally his.
The majority of the book focuses on Larfleeze boasting his origin story and ignoring the imminent threat of death. While devoted fans of the Orange Lantern have a good assumption of what his backstory is, writers Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis add more to the mythos. While it is cool to see the backstory of the sometimes-villainous, sometimes-heroic Larfleeze expanded upon, the writers add a wrinkle into the mix by making characters (and the readers as well) doubt the truthful nature of what is being told. There is an odd mixture of black comedy and empathy being weaved together in Larfleeze’s story that I don’t think I have ever seen in a proper DC book. It will be interesting to see if the writers can keep up this level of wit throughout the rest of the series.
Artist Scott Kolins brings a hyper-kinetic, cartoonish style to the table which beautifully fits the book. While some people will not enjoy the art, it goes hand in hand perfectly with the story being told.
Larfleeze is an interesting book that I would recommend to any Green Lantern fan. Larfleeze stands alone from the rest of the Green Lantern line of books because it is not overly serious and weighed down by the fallout from the last major crossover. It is a bold, energetic, funny and witty book that is unlike anything else DC is currently publishing. If Giffen, DeMatteis and Kollins can bring the same dynamic to this book month after month, I would not be surprised if DC has a sleeper hit on their hands.
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