Guardians of the Universe: Wikis

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Oans

Art by Jamal Igle.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Green Lantern vol. 2 #1 (July 1960)
Created by John Broome (writer)
Gil Kane (artist)
Characteristics
Place of origin Oa
Notable members Appa Ali Apsa
Ganthet
Lianna
Sayd
Scar
Inherent abilities Superhuman intelligence,
Energy Manipulation,
Immortality,
Telepathy,
Telekinesis

The Guardians of the Universe are a fictional extraterrestrial race in the DC Comics universe. They first appeared in Green Lantern Vol. 2 #1 (July 1960), and were created by John Broome and Gil Kane.[1]

Within the Green Lantern stories, the Guardians of the Universe are the immortal founders and leaders of the Green Lantern Corps, which they administrate from their homeworld Oa at the center of the universe. The appearance of the male Guardians, modeled after then-Prime Minister of Israel David Ben-Gurion,[2] is elderly, short and blue-skinned with large heads and white hair.

Contents

History

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Background

The Guardians evolved on the planet Maltus, and were among the first intelligent life forms in the universe. At this time they were tall greyish blue humanoids with black hair. They became scientists and thinkers, experimenting on the worlds around them. One experiment led to the creation of a new species, the Psions. In a pivotal moment, billions of years ago, a Maltusian named Krona used time-bending technology to observe the beginning of the Universe. However, this experiment, and later attempts to stop it, unleashed disaster upon all existence. Originally, the experiment splintered the Universe into the Multiverse and created the evil Anti-Matter Universe of Qward.[1] Following the retroactive destruction of the Multiverse, it was revealed that Krona flooded the beginning of the Universe with entropy causing it "to be born old".

Feeling responsible for this, the evolved Maltusians relocated to the planet Oa (at "the center of the Universe") and became the Guardians. Their goal was simple: combat evil and create an orderly universe. And they acted quickly on that goal. During this period they slowly evolved into their current appearance. They now act as the leaders of the Green Lantern Corps, an interstellar police force which patrols the universe.[1]

Campaigns

  • Before life existed on Earth, they learned how to manipulate an energy they called "the Glow," and eventually created a Central Power Battery to store said energy. "The Glow" was actually the collective willpower of the inhabitants of the universe. Accessing and manipulating this willpower gave the Guardians an ultimate tool to pursue their goals. A powerful willpower elemental, Ion, resided within the battery.
  • Hunting down those who preyed on the weak, they captured a fear elemental, Parallax. They imprisoned the creature in the Central Power Battery, hoping to lock it away forever.
  • Millenia ago, after a protracted war, they achieved an accord with the Reach, an alien race who turned out to be the source of the Blue Beetle scarab bonded to Jaime Reyes.[3]
  • As documented in Legion of Superheroes, centuries ago the powerful race of energy giants known as the Djinn terrorized the universe. The Guardians fought a war with them; after they defeated the Djinn, they imprisoned them within individual receptacles similar to bottles or lamps. These receptacles were then flung off to the farthest reaches or corners of the universe.
  • The magic-wielding Empire of Tears was subjugated and imprisoned on the throneworld and tombworld of Ysmault.
  • Trying to remove magic from the Universe, they bound as much magical energy as possible into an orb called the Starheart. This would eventually become the ring and lantern of Alan Scott.
  • On Mars, the Guardians confronted the destructive race known as "The Burning" and split the race into Three new species: the Green Martians, the White Martians and the Yellow Martians. The Guardians changed their reproductive behavior, and gave them an inherent fear of fire in order to stop their species from destroying much of the universe.
  • The Guardians created the robotic Manhunters to patrol the Universe. The Manhunters rebelled under mysterious circumstances and were stripped of their weaponry and exiled.
  • The mad god that was the entire Sector 3600 was defeated by the Guardians and constrained within a matrix of their own making. By showing the sector that they were its superiors, the Guardians had imprisoned it for all time.
  • The insect race of Tchkk-Tchkki, later known as Legion, was enclosed in an emerald force field around their world to prevent the locust-like race from expanding further.
  • They reached an accord with the Spider Guild whereby they and their operatives would stay out of Vegan space. Due to this agreement, the Omega Men have become the only peacekeepers in their sector.
  • After the failed experiment with the Manhunters, the Guardians invented other ways of opposing evil in the universe. The Green Glob was an intelligent teaching machine created from their emerald energy, programmed to educate mortals all over the universe and able to briefly alter reality to do so.
  • The Hallas, an intergalactic police corps wielding power guns channeling the emerald energy, was a short-lived successor of the Manhunters and a precursor to the successful Green Lantern Corps.
  • Finally, the Green Lantern Corps was established to replace the Manhunters and the Hallas. These troops were given some of the power of the Central Power Battery, accessed through a ring.
  • Doomsday, the creature who would later kill Superman, fought the Green Lantern Corps, causing them massive casualties. Doomsday eventually made his way to Oa where he was defeated by the Guardians, although one of them lost their lives in the process.
  • They waged a war against Apokolips. They tried several times to infiltrate Darkseid's home, finally deciding on a war against his rule. The battle ended with two-thirds of the Guardians' troops dead, while the attack on Apokolips ended with a truce.
  • The Guardians took a critical view of those heroes whom they thought interfered too much in the development of species. On one occasion they planted a seed of doubt in Superman's mind, making him believe that maybe Earth's people were becoming too dependent on him and being prevented from evolving, developing, and becoming self-reliant. They appeared to achieve their goal, though Superman still intervened where major disasters such as earthquakes and typhoons were concerned.[4]
  • During the Crisis on Infinite Earths the Guardians were again divided. A small group desired to take a more aggressive role in destroying evil and recruited Guy Gardner to act as their Green Lantern. The failure of the Guardians to act decisively in the Crisis led to their decision to temporarily withdraw from the universe.

Consequences

The Manhunter rebellion led to schisms. One group (the Controllers) thought that the only way to protect the Universe was to control it. The female Oans (Zamarons) felt no need to involve themselves in the Universe's problems. Over the years, both groups evolved to look most unlike the Guardians. Other groups have also left the Guardians; one such group settled on Earth, becoming the origin for leprechaun legends. The Manhunters became avowed enemies of the Guardians. The Apokolips campaign ended with a truce with the Guardians forced to abandon a soldier (Raker Qarrigat) to Darkseid. Fearing dissension, they ordered all records of the Campaign expunged.

Modern history

Oa's defensive systems

The Guardians were almost wiped out in the events of Emerald Twilight, the only survivor being Ganthet. They sacrificed themselves to create one final power ring, a power ring perhaps more powerful than all others before it. Oa was itself destroyed in a battle between Parallax and Kyle Rayner, but rebuilt in the events of "Legacy" as the final wish of Hal Jordan's former power ring. The Guardians have since been restored when Kyle Rayner, as Ion, recharged the Central Power Battery. Rayner lost his power and role as Ion but this sacrifice released all the Guardian's life forces from the dormancy in his ring. The Immortals first appeared as children but aged quickly and many seem to have returned to the identities they had before they created Kyle Rayner's power ring. Unlike before however: the Guardians are male and female, rather than just male. While Kyle had made them children in order for them to grow up and become less cold than their predecessors, this has not worked. Instead the Guardians are as cold and manipulative as they were before the Emerald Twilight, with the exception of Ganthet and Sayd. Also one of them (Lianna) seems to have reverted to the original Maltusian appearance in the process. Also many of the Guardians revived by Kyle Rayner seemed to have disappeared as only a handful now appear in the current Green Lantern issues, while dozens were revived by Kyle Rayner. Also Female Guardians appear in flashbacks to Hal Jordans rookie days as a Green Lantern, whether this is an oversight or a result of the events of Infinite Crisis has not been explained. With their revival they have begun to rebuild the Green Lantern Corps using veterans to train the new ring-bearers. Alongside this experiment, the Guardians refortified Oa by creating a planetwide armour and defensive system to prevent successful attacks against them. The Sinestro Corps War forces them to rewrite the Book of Oa and to add ten new laws. To date, 4 of the 10 have been revealed.[5] They also expelled Ganthet and Sayd from their rank, because they have experienced emotions along with being discovered to have romantic relationship with each other and quoting the forbidden chapter of the Book of Oa which has Abin Sur's discovery of the prophecy The Blackest Night, which they consider to be not permitted.

In the aftermath of the War, both Ganthet and Sayd have evolved into two new beings on a paradise-like planet Odym, where they are harnessing the blue energy spectrum of hope and creating blue power rings and batteries, planning to create another intergalactic police force in order to be able to aid the Guardians and the Green Lantern Corps against The Blackest Night The rank of the Guardians has weakened as well, of originally there were twelve of them as Head Guardians, now there are nine of them, after Ganthet and Sayd left Oa, and one Guardian is dead after a battle with Superman-Prime -this Guardian willfully "detonated" himself in an unsuccessful, last-ditch effort to destroy the insane Kryptonian (who wished to destroy the Universe in his own right).[6] A female Guardian has been left scarred by the Anti-Monitor, and the exposure to his antimatter energy reveals to have had dire consequences. Her fellow Guardians were unaware of the changes within her, either physical or behavioral (she is far more militant than is normal for the Guardians).[7][8] In the Origins and Omens backup stories running through several DC releases in February 2009, she is given the official name of Scar.[9] It is later revealed that she has since died after the Anti-Monitor's attack, and now functioning as an undead instead of an immortal.[10]

The Guardians seem extremely displeased with the appearance of the other corps. While they "tolerate" the existence of the Star Sapphires, they have made it clear that they are going to exterminate the Red Lantern Corps. They also seem to have made a deal with Larfleeze of the Orange Lantern Corps some time ago, which resulted in the Vega System being out of Green Lantern jurisdiction. However, they seem to show particular displeasure with the Blue Lantern Corps, going so far as to attempt to forcibly remove the blue ring acquired by Hal Jordan, and when that didn't work attempting to hold him on Oa until such time as it could be removed. With the ultimatum delivered by Larfleeze, the current wielder of the orange power of avarice, Scar has proposed lifting the ban on the Vega System as well as having the Guardians leave Oa to get involved in the conflict personally.[11][12]

The Guardians have accepted Scar's proposal and have left Oa with Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps to confront Larfleeze in the Vega System. The Guardians also decide to see how Jordan's blue ring would functions with his green one during battles.[13] After the Agent Orange's defeat, the Guardians negotiated with Larfleeze once more in order to continue to keep the orange light of avarice contained. The Agent Orange later launched an attack on Odym, seeking to possess the powers of the Blue Lantern Corps, presumably being swayed by Scar.[14][15]

During the Blackest Night, the Guardians finally realized that Ganthet and Sayd were correct in their interpretation of the prophecy discovered by Abin Sur. However, Scar killed a Guardian and bound the rest to prevent them from interfering. She later sent a number of black power rings to the Green Lantern Corps' memorial, reviving the deceased members of the Corps as undead Black Lanterns. She also weakened Oa's planetary defenses for an attack from the Black Lantern Corps.[16]

When a group of Green Lanterns found their way into the Guardians chamber, they found it empty, with no sign of Scar or her captives.[17] Scar had taken her captives to the dead planet of Ryut, home of the Black Lantern's central power battery.[18] Scar and the Guardians have teleports themselves with Black Hand and Nekron on Coast City.[19]

Powers and abilities

Functionally immortal, Guardians resemble short (approximately 4 feet [122 cm] tall), large-headed, white-haired pale blue humans wearing red robes with their emblem, the Green Lantern symbol, on the chest. They possess vast knowledge, durability, awareness, flight and psionic powers manifested through green plasma energy drawn from the most stable color of the emotional spectrum, green (willpower). Although, since it has been said that they chose the most stable color of the spectrum, it is possible that the Guardians may have limited access to all colors. In Green Lantern: Rebirth, Kyle Rayner is recorded saying that Ganthet could crack a planet in half with a thought. Indeed, they have been shown able to stagger Superman-Prime and the Anti-Monitor. In Green Lantern (v.2) #100 the Guardians display the power of time travel as they send a time-lost Kyle Rayner back to his future timeline. The guardians can manipulate time, space, matter, and reality, making them among the most powerful beings in the DC universe.

Guardians known by name

It has been said that "Guardians don't take names", but a few of their lot have nonetheless been named in the stories. Among them:

  • Appa Ali Apsa (a.k.a. the Old-Timer)
  • Broome Bon Baris
  • Dawlakispokpok (renegade)
  • Ganthet
  • Herupa Hando Hu
  • Lianna (reborn Guardian altered by Heartstone and raised by a Zamaron)
  • Master Builder (a.k.a. John Stewart, the only mortal Guardian of the Universe)
  • Pazu Pinder Pol
  • Ranakar
  • Sayd
  • Scar
  • Sodam Yat (future and last Guardian of the Universe)

Other media

Television

The Guardians of the Universe as depicted in Superman: The Animated Series.
  • In the episode "In Brightest Day..." of Superman: The Animated Series, they approach Superman for him to help Kyle Rayner in defeating Sinestro. There is only one female Oan, who appears to be head of the council (this predates the actual appearance of female Guardians in the mainstream continuity comics).
  • In the Justice League animated series episode "In Blackest Night" they attend John Stewart's trial, and later tried to defend Oa from an attack by the Manhunters. They also appear in the same red robes as their comic counterparts, as opposed to the Green lantern uniform worn by them in Superman: The Animated Series.
  • In Justice League Unlimited they appear briefly in the beginning of "The Return" where they deny Stewart's request to leave Earth and take a tour of duty on Oa.
  • The Guardians of the Universe appears in the Duck Dodgers episode "The Green Loontern".
  • The Guardians briefly appeared, without dialogue, at the end of the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "The Eyes of Despero". They have been placed in Hal Jordan's ring for safe keeping while he fought Despero. They were later fully featured in "Revenge of the Reach" voiced by J.K. Simmons. They explain the connection between the Blue Beetle's scarab and the Reach.

Film

  • The Guardians made an appearance in Justice League: The New Frontier voiced by Robin Atkin Downes. They guide Hal Jordan on the use of his Green Lantern ring against Earth's ancient evil, The Centre.

Video Games

  • The Guardians make a brief appearance in Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. In the Story mode, they inform Green Lantern, Lex Luthor, and Catwoman about the merging of the universes when the hero and villains arrive on Oa.

References

  1. ^ a b c Wallace, Dan (2008), "Guardians of the Universe", in Dougall, Alastair, The DC Comics Encyclopedia, New York: Dorling Kindersley, pp. 150, ISBN 0-7566-4119-5, OCLC 213309017  
  2. ^ Finkelshteyn, Leah (June/July 2003), Thwak! To Our Enemies, 84 (10 ed.), Hadassah magazine, http://www.hadassah.org/news/content/per_hadassah/archive/2003/03_JUN/art.htm  
  3. ^ Wizard Comics interview with John Rogers May 6, 2007
  4. ^ Superman #247, issued January 1972, Must There Be A Superman?, written by Elliot S! Maggin, drawn by Curt Swan and Murphy Anderson
  5. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #23 (September 2007)
  6. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #25 (December 2007)
  7. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #27 (January 2008)
  8. ^ Final Crisis: Rise of the Red Lanterns #1 (October 2008)
  9. ^ Adventure Comics #0
  10. ^ Green Lantern vol. 4 #44 (September 2009)
  11. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #38 (February 2009)
  12. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #39 (April 2009)
  13. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #40 (April 2009)
  14. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #41 (May 2009)
  15. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #42 (June 2009)
  16. ^ Blackest Night #1 (July 2009)
  17. ^ Green Lantern Corps (vol. 2) #40 (September 2009)
  18. ^ Green Lantern (vol. 4) #46 (September 2009)
  19. ^ Blackest Night #4 (December 2009)

External links


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