No no no, it’s not Batman. C’mon. It doesn’t mean a man is gay just because he feels alienated from society and spends lots of time with a male companion and, er, dresses flamboyantly in a way that shows off his buff physique. Wait — are we sure it’s not Batman?

No, it’s not. Allegedly:

I’m hearing that it’s Alan Scott, the original Green Lantern.

Created by Martin Nodell, and first written with Bill Finger in 1940, Green Lantern was originally a mysticaly-based superhero, whose powers were derived from the flame of a magic lamp and he became an original member of the Justice Society Of America.

Eventually, Green Lantern would be rebooted in the sixties by DC as a science fiction superhero, Hal Jordan recruited by an alien police force to monitor the galaxy, the character that recently inspired a Hollywood movie. But in the comics, the original Green Lantern would also repeatedly reappear, often as an older man.

In the DC New 52 books, Alan Scott was reintroduced this month in Earth Two #1, as a young man, and head of GBC Productions.

Does the Green Lantern really qualify as one of “the major iconic D.C. characters”? I have only a passing knowledge of comics but my impression is that he’s the second-lamest “major” superhero there is, aside of course from you-know-who. Granted, he finally got his own movie, but that was after Hollywood completely exhausted Superman, Batman, and Spider-Man. (Well, not completely.) Even the Fantastic Four got their own movie before he did. I’m not even sure what his superpowers are. His main power now, I guess, is drumming up cheap publicity for D.C. Comics by magically transforming into a minor footnote in the culture war over gay rights.

Ah well. If nothing else, the next Green Lantern movie promises to be a little different from the usual cookie-cutter superhero flick. Expect them to get around to it sometime after the next 20 Superman/Batman/Spider-Man reboots. Exit question: Should D.C. have moved faster on this? If they had rolled out the new gay GL even a month sooner, he might have landed a cameo in this self-congratulatory new ad from a guy who spent the past decade relentlessly lying about his position on gay marriage to protect his own political viability.

Update: Ace, who does know something about comics, calls this a cop out.