From DCU Guide Wiki
|Created by Gerard Jones and Martin Nodell|
Art by Martin Nodell
While Alan Scott, the Golden Age Green Lantern, was trapped in Limbo with the Justice Society of America, a projection of Scott appeared to the three Green Lanterns of Earth. Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner, and John Stewart each saw the projection, and traced it back to Scott's power battery at his house. There, they met Scott's wife, Molly Mayne Scott. The projection told them of the true origin of the Golden Age Green Lantern's power ring and the story of Yalan Gur.
Two thousand years ago, one of the greatest of the Green Lanterns, Yalan Gur of Space Sector 2814, was nearly killed by a yellow beast. The Guardians of the Universe were led to question whether they should risk their best Green Lantern with such an arbitrary weakness.
The Guardians removed the yellow impurity from Yalan Gur's power ring. Unfortunately without any weaknesses, he was soon corrupted by his power.
In becoming invincible, Yalan came to see himself as infallible. He felt he should shape his sector as he saw fit. An alien Green Lantern, Yalan Gur feared the rise of mankind in the universe. To halt human development he terrorized ancient China, at that time the highest level of civilization. Yalan felt the best way to control humanity was to keep it in disarray.
The trading city of Chao-Tzu, one of the deepest inland outposts of the Chinese Empire, was to be attacked by a bandit tribe from the Sinkiang Hills. The only thing that could have stopped them was the mounted detachment of Minister Xiang - Fa's Yellow Warriors. Only they could sustain China's Westward expansion.
Not trusting his warriors alone to defend him, Minister Xiang-Fa had a fortress wall built. Yalan attacked the wall, enraging the peasants who then attacked him with wooden sticks. Yalan laughed off their attempt.
The Guardians, who had waited for their opportunity to humble Yalan, changed the composition of his ring and power battery. The ring was now vulnerable to wood, the humblest of the peasants' weapons.
So enraged by the humans' attack and by the Guardians' apparent betrayal, Yalan did not order his ring to repair his wounds. Mortally injured, he plummeted to Earth, the air friction setting him on fire.
Yalan Gur died during reentry to Earth’s atmosphere, burning up, his life absorbed by the battery. Its casing melted and crashed as a green meteor, fusing with the mystical "Starheart".
The Starheart itself was created billions of years ago by the Guardians of the Universe. The Guardians had sought to remove magic from the universe. To this end, all energies mystical or magical, both good and evil, were gathered and bound, and compressed within the pith of a star. This was to be a prison for all eternity.
For millennia it churned and pulsed, gaining strength and sentience. In time, the benevolent part of its essence expelled a part of itself. This would be known as the Green Flame of Life. Seeking pain worthy of assuaging, the mystic jetsam wandered. It found Yalan Gur, and merged with the dying Green Lantern. The Guardians left it there as a monument and prison to a fallen Green Lantern.
The emerald energy's fall was considered a meteor strike. It was found by Chang, a sorcerer, who heard a mental cry from Yalan's tortured spirit. "Three times shall I flame green!" it spoke. "First - to bring death!" it promised in rage, "Second - to bring life!" it promised in its remorse, and "Third - to bring power!" it promised in Yalan Gur's desire to live again.
Chang took a part of the meteor, which angered the people of the village. They had believed Chang and the fallen star were evil. The sorcerer made a lamp of the molten metal, and was killed by frightened neighbors. They in turn were killed by the lamp. First - to bring death.
In the twentieth century, the lamp was brought to America by a trio of adventurers who had tracked the pirates of the China seas. Eventually, it was left just north of Gotham City, outside the Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane.
The lamp was given to one of the patients, who was fond of working with metals. He transformed the Chinese lamp into a train lantern. As the lantern flamed with light, the man was cured. Soon, he walked out of Arkham Asylum a sane man. Second - to bring life.
A few years later, the lantern was in a train, which was on a test run over the newly constructed Trestle Bridge in the American West. The passengers had no idea it would be sabotaged. Crossing the bridge, there was an explosion which hurled the train to the ground below.
All on the train were killed, except for Alan Scott, an engineer in charge of the bridge's construction. The green lantern's flame illuminated the wreckage. It spoke to Scott, telling him much of it's story. It promised Scott that power over the dark evil things would be his if he had faith in himself. If he lost his faith, he would lose his power, because willpower is the flame of the green lantern. Scott was told to carve a part of the lantern to make a ring of power which must be touched to the green lantern once every twenty four hours.
Returning to his office, Scott found the metal formed easily, almost as if the ring were willing itself to be shaped. The lantern was his power source.
Scott used the ring to bring the saboteurs to justice. He learned the might and the limitations of the power ring. Though it had miraculous abilities, it was still ineffectual against wood.
Alan Scott felt the call of destiny. He dressed in a costume of red and green, creating an oath, based on the words of the green flame. Third - to bring power! Alan Scott was now the Golden Age Green Lantern.
The ring was destroyed roughly fifty years later, and Alan Scott had for a time internalized the power, temporarily renaming himself Sentinel.
How much of Yalan Gur's psyche remains in existence is unknown.
POWERS AND WEAPONS
As a Green Lantern, Yalan Gur possessed a power ring and power battery.
For a definitive list of appearances of Yalan Gur in chronological order click here
The story (in Green Lantern Vol. 3 #19) had a lot going for it. Not only does it establish the rings *could* work on yellow, without having to be rebuilt, this guy seemed to be *extremely* important to the Guardians. Now we learn another GL had gone renegade, besides Sinestro. One of their best, too. The Guardians never mentioned that... It ties the Golden Age Green Lantern with the Corps while not diluting either of their histories, quite well, I might add. Martin Nodell (who created Green Lantern in the first place) is a guest penciller... talk about getting your money's worth.
I've combined that story with the the story from Secret Origins #18 (September 1987). The Secret Origins #18 story deals with Alan Scott, of course. It was written by Roy Thomas, and based on material from All-American Comics #16-18 (1940) by Mart Nodell and Bill Finger.
I felt Yalan Gur's story wasn't over until Scott became Green Lantern. It's also given me a big jump on Alan Scott's history.
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