Evil is as Evil Does
I didn’t initially plan on returning to my bitching about Superfriends, but while running some searches on the excellent Justice League Unlimited series, I stumbled across another Green Lantern episode of this old series. Moreover, this episode, titled “Evil is as Evil Does,” is one I actually remember watching before going to school one day, and I liked it at the time. So here’s a fresh chance for me to realize how painful nostalgia can really be. I don’t know whether I should be happy or distressed about this situation, but here goes.
Okay, the first thing we see are the Guardians of the Universe on planet Oa, at the “center of the universe.” We don’t know what’s troubling them, but damn are they troubled. The narrator tells us so. Turns out that “the interplanetary lord of crime,” Evil Star, is heading toward Earth. Yeah, that’s right, Evil Star. You see, in the 1970s, bad guys couldn’t afford cool names. Apparently there was some sort of name rationing going on, so folks had to choose the lamest moniker they could think of. I’d be more afraid of a guy named Melvin than I would of Evil Star.
So apparently his evil plan is to show how powerful his star bands are. To demonstrate his power to everyone on Earth, he attacks the Green Lantern’s home. There are a couple of things wrong here. First of all, since Evil Star flies right down toward Hal Jordan’s house, it demonstrates that he knows the Green Lantern’s secret identity. Maybe it’s because Hal has a freakin’ blue-skinned alien living with him that helps him fly planes. What’s the point of a secret identity if you’re going to parade around with an alien that also happens to be the hero’s sidekick? That’s like Bruce Wayne very publicly booking luncheons with Robin. The other problem is that there are no people around. Now maybe Evil Star’s plan is to kill the Green Lantern and drag his corpse into some news station, but usually if you’re going to give a display of your might to the people of Earth, you want to do it, you know, in front of the people of Earth.
So after a few lame ass laser shows between Evil Star and the Green Lantern, GL zaps his foe with a big ass boxing glove. This infuriates Evil Star, even though it seems that he didn’t sustain any serious damage from the blow. He vows revenge on the Guardians of the Universe, and then we cut to GL and Cairo back in his house. So apparently, rather than drag in the villain after he’s beaten him, Hal is a real sport and would rather let the bad guy go after the most powerful beings in the universe. He runs back into his house to give his ring a full charge.
Now, I mentioned this in my last rant, but here’s how the Green Lantern charges his ring. He sticks it in front of his power battery (a green…lantern…) and concentrates, usually reciting his oath. When he charged his ring before fighting Evil Star, he said, “Let those who worship evil’s might beware my power…Green Lantern’s light!” That’s the last half of the frickin’ oath, which implies that the ring was charged right before the battle against Evil Star. I don’t know if he’s worried that the thirty seconds or so that he beat on Evil Star might come back to bite him or not, but if he’s planning a trip to the center of the universe, I don’t think that an extra minute or so on the 24-hour charge is going to make a difference.
But wait…the power battery dies out while GL is charging his ring! Luckily, Cairo has the perfect solution…he hits it. That’s right, he gives this arcane source of energy, one that has existed for thousands of years and that taps into the collected willpower of all the beings in the universe, a single hit and it works again like it’s some busted radio. But it’s still flickering…Evil Star is already on Oa! Holy shit! How fast can that guy travel? Either he just went from being on Earth to being in the center of the universe within a few minutes, or the Green Lantern spent like a week sitting around before recharging his ring. Either way, Hal and Cairo zip off to Oa. Hal’s preferred method of flight is apparently to have his sidekick ride him like they were having hot anal sex while flying through a green tube. Whatever.
Meanwhile, on Oa, Evil Star creates a big ol’ smog cloud over the great hall. “That should take care of Green Lantern!” he smugly says. Um…sure. Sure, the hero will look at the smog cloud, which by the way covers only the building that you are in, and scratch his head wondering where oh where the dastardly Evil Star went. Or maybe he’ll just remember that you specifically said you were going after the Guardians of the Universe. By the way dumbass, the Guardians happen to be some of the most powerful beings in existence. You know those Green Lantern rings? Yeah, they created those. It’s a really great idea to go after the oldest and most powerful beings in the universe on their home turf after one of their 3600 minions kicked your sorry ass a few minutes ago. Moron.
But hey, he can’t be all that dumb. The Guardians act all surprised that he’s there, despite warning Hal Jordan that he was free. Then he starts turning them to stone, I guess, until GL pops through the wall with a comical “boing!” No, seriously, he does. But Evil Star is unabashed and promptly snags Hal’s power ring, rendering him useless. Of course, here he commits a classic villain blunder. When the most powerful weapon in the universe is in your hands, you use the damned thing. Instead, he gloats while holding the ring in the tips of his fingers, allowing Cairo, who came out of nowhere, to jump on him and knock the ring back to Hal. Once again, Evil Star gets his face pounded by a green boxing glove. So he resorts to Plan C: he’s going to fly around and keep GL busy for 24 hours, after which the ring will lose its charge and become useless. A brilliant idea, except that he’s already gotten his ass handed to him twice in two fights that lasted less than thirty seconds. But third time’s the charm, right?
You’ve got to hand it to Evil Star, he’s a clever one. Oh no, wait…clever isn’t the word I was looking for. In his attempts to keep Hal busy, he creates a cloud of…I dunno, looks like fire or something. Except that the cloud is maybe three feet square and Hal easily flies over it. That’s like throwing one tack behind you and hoping a car runs over it and goes off the road. Evil Star has a couple more tricks up his sleeve (well, one really), but is ultimately foiled when Green Lantern uses his ring to snag his wrist and drag him back to jail. Once again, the fight lasted less than 30 seconds, and Evil Star is proven to be one of the worst villains of all time.
So Evil Star is placed in what looks like a large upside-down glass jar until he’s brought to galactic prison. I don’t know why he doesn’t just push the thing off of him and make a run for it. Oh wait, I do. It’s because he’s a stupid, stupid man. But it’s also a little mean on GL’s part too, since they didn’t put any air holes in it or anything. So Evil Star probably dies of asphyxiation and his corpse is thrown into jail anyway. Everyone in the universe is apparently dumb as rocks and thus assumes that he’s still alive even though he’s deader than my first goldfish. The end.