Kilowog is from the planet Bolovax Vik in sector 674 where he was a genetic scientist. When he was recruited into the Green Lantern Corps he was trained by Lantern instructor, Ermey. It was from Ermey that Kilowog learned the phrase "Poozer" for a "useless rookie", a phrase Kilowog would become famous for when he himself would train future Lanterns. Ermey was killed while leading the rookie Lanterns, including Kilowog, in helping Lanterns who were under attack and losing power. Before he died, Ermey painted a Green Lantern symbol on Kilowog's chest, signifying that he was no longer a rookie and told him that he could be a leader in the future. One of the Lanterns helped was Sinestro who was also impressed by Kilowog.
Kilowog first appeared in Green Lantern #201 in 1986, He was created by Steve Englehart and Joe Staton.
Kilowog was originally at the bottom of his rookie class, but got better as time went on. After the death of his first Teacher He became a close friend of Sinestro up until his betrayal. As Time went on Kilowog became more attached to the rookies he taught to the point where he can no longer train them for fear of them dying. He has also grown more attached to the Green Lanterns of Earth, but still remains one of the strongest willed lanterns there is.
Kilowog is known by all Green Lanterns as a tough drill sargent. His antics in that role are not all that dissimilar from a R. Lee Ermey. This is evidenced by Kilowog adopting much of his style from his mentor, who just so happens to be named Ermey. He talks down to new recruits by calling them poozers (essentially meaning rookie), a word which he has become famous for using.
Kilowog is not just a tough teacher but is also often used in comic relief. In this sense, Kilowog is seen as the lovable oaf. But considering his strength and temper, he still is not one to be bullied or messed with.
In the field, Kilowog is often shown as one of the most powerful Green Lanterns. He is a heavy hitter for the Corps. Not only this, but he is also a very skilled leader during battles and crisis situations.
Major Story Arcs
Crisis on Infinite Earths
As part of the Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline, Bolovax Vik was destroyed. Kilowog was devastated, especially given the communal nature of his species. Kilowog was, however, able to store his people's essence within his ring.
After the Crisis, the Guardians decided to end their leadership of the Green Lantern Corps and that the remaining Green Lanterns could deploy as they saw fit. Since his planet was destroyed and their would be no new Lanterns to train, Kilowog relocated to Earth with Hal Jordan and his fellow Green Lanterns of Earth. His appearance frightened many humans at first, though Kilowog briefly became a celebrity when he defeated the villain Black Hand on live television in a battle over Anaheim Stadium. Kilowog would draw criticism when he lived in the USSR, believing it's society to be similar to his home world. While there, he assisted in the creation of the Rocket Red Brigade, the Soviet Union's own super powered force. His time in the Soviet Union was short lived as he increasingly saw how flawed human Communism was.
Bolavax Vik II
During his interstellar travels, Kilowog discovered a planet he believed could serve as a new home world to his people in sector 872. Using his ring, he revived the 16 billion from his home planet. The renegade former Green Lantern, Sinestro destroyed the planet soon after it's creation, killing everyone with Kilowog unable to save them. The loss drove Kilowog temporarily insane until fellow Lantern Arisia helped bring him back to his senses and they returned to Earth.
Justice League International
When the Corps disbanded after the central battery was nearly extinguished, Kilowog and Hal Jordan joined Maxwell Lord's Justice League International. He worked mainly as as a fix-it man, creating devices and security systems for the team.
For further details: Emerald Twilight
The Guardians eventually reformed the Green Lantern Corps on Oa and assigned Kilowog to train new recruits. The reformed Corps was short lived as Hal Jordan, possessed by Parallax, turned on them after the destruction of Coast City. Kilowog was on Oa and tried to prevent Hal from absorbing the central battery but was killed and almost completely disintegrated by Hal's attack.
Only one Guardian, Ganthet and a handful of de-powered Lanterns would survive Jordan's rampage.
Kilowog's soul was brought back to the living by a number of former Lanterns to take revenge on Hal Jordan. Calling themselves the Brotherhood of the Cold Flame, they used arcane rituals to bring Kilowog from the Bolovax Vik afterlife as the Dark Lantern. The Brotherhood never got their revenge and Hal sacrificed himself to reignite Earth's Sun during the Final Night. When Hal's ring recreated Oa, Kilowog looked at it and his soul found peace, returning to the afterlife. Soon after, Kyle Rayner and Ganthet brought Kilowog back to life.
For further details: Green Lantern: Rebirth
With Hal Jordan and the Corps rebirth, Kilowog returned once more to his role turning the raw Poozers into Green Lanterns. Kilowog, along with many aliens associated with Earth, was taken over by Despero in an attempt to invade Earth. He tried to convince Superman, who was unaffected, to also turn against humanity, who with Batman's help would end the threat.
Sinestro Corps War
For further details: Sinestro Corps War
Kilowog was on the front lines for much of the Green Lanterns' war with the Sinestro Corps. He led the force that defended Mogo and was in the middle of the bloodiest fighting. When the battle moved to Earth, Kilowog went too. On Earth he battled Arkillo, finishing a grudge started in the sky above Mogo. He almost killed the murderous Yellow Lantern in San Diego by dropping an aircraft carrier on him. After taking his ring, Kilowog was ordered to New York to help battle the Anti-monitor.
Rage Of The Red Lanterns
After the war, the Guardians agreed to allow Korugar to execute Sinestro. Kilowog, Hal Jordan, Salaak and John Stewart were part of the detail transporting him from Oa. The group were ambushed by Yellow Lanterns loyal to Sinestro. During the battle, they too were ambushed by the Red Lanterns who wanted Sinestro themselves. The effects of the red rings caused the Green Lanterns to battle each other until they were rescued by Saint Walker.
For further details: Blackest Night
During the Blackest Night , Kilowog defended Oa from a swarm of Black Lanterns. The Black Lanterns try to use Kilowog's emotions by pitting him against a reanimated Ermey. Ermey almost rips out Kilowog's heart, but stops as the Black Lanterns reach full power. He then shifts his attention to the Central Battery. Once the Battery is secure, Kilowog joins Kyle and other Green Lanterns in trying to retrain a Red Lantern infected Guy Gardner before Lanterns of all colors travel to Earth for the final battle of the Blackest Night.
After the Blackest Night, Kilowog stands down as the Corps Drill Instructor and hands responsibility for training new recruits to Stel.
Brightest Day - Emerald Warriors
For further details: Brightest Day and Emerald Warriors
During the Brightest Day Emerald Warriors story arc Kilowog travels with Guy Gardner, Arisia, and Bleez to the unknown sectors to solve the mystery of why the Green Lanterns power rings are leaking willpower. To go on this journey, Kilowog decides to quits as Drill sergeant for the corps, despite resistance. As the Emerald Warriors enter into the dark sectors Kilowog watches several of his own recruits, who are being deceived by Zardor, commit suicide with their power rings. Enraged, Kilowog goes in pursuit of the yet unknown Zardor. Before they can continue pursuing Zador, Guy Gardner throws up a blood prophesy describing the events to come, which include a war amongst green lanterns.
During Emerald Warriors, a major theme is remorse, nostalgia, guilt, and sorrow that is experienced by Kilowog after the events of Blackest night, wherein several of his personally trained lanterns died in combat.
War Of The Green Lanterns
When Krona first struck with his attempt to control the mind of the Green Lantern Corps Kilowog was one of the very few who were able to resist his initial strike. However later on he was captured by Krona and it was shown that although one could resist Krona at first up close and personal his abilities could not be shielded from. Kilowog later fell under his control and became a part of his mind controlled Corps. When Guy Gardner broke into the Central Battery and removed Parallax from it and cleansed the impurity from their minds Kilowog was brought back to his senses and now arms himself for the final attack against Krona.
In the Flashpoint universe, Kilowog perished trying to stop Nekron and his Black Lantern Corps from completely annihilating Sector 674.
Powers and Abilities
Kilowog is a wielder of a Green Lantern Ring which grants him extraordinary powers. He is able to manipulate the energies of the ring through sheer willpower to accomplish a variety of feats.
Being from the planet Bolivax Vik, Kilowog has super-human strength, speed, endurance and durability. He can survive hits from Class 100s with little to no effect. He can also easily lift 75+ tons, and with the ring he once lifted an aircraft carrier, which weighs several thousands of tons.
Kilowog can mind link himself with any of his species that are alive.
Intellect & Strategies:
He is one of the smartest Green Lanterns and the best strategist in the Green Lantern Corps.
Kilowog has shown an affinity for creating amazingly complex machinery using the ring. In terms of combat, Kilowog tends to use the "giant boxing glove" fighting style popularized by Hal Jordan. He mainly uses his ring to fly and to absorb any enemy's attacks long enough for him to get close enough to defeat them with his tremendous strength.
The powers that a Green Lantern Ring grant Kilowog are:
- Animating: A Green Lantern can will things to move how he wants.
- Artificial Intelligence: Every ring has a connection to the Main Battery on Oa, which taps into an artificial intelligence. It acts as an "on-board computer," telling the wearer what they need to know. It can either respond out loud, or silently directly to the wearer's mind. The AI contains a large database of information that may be crucial to a Lantern's success. The ring also translates nearly every language to and from the wearer (though they have difficulty translating profanity), which is why the Corps can communicate with each other. When the bearer of a Green Lantern ring dies, the ring will seek out a suitable replacement for their sector. The AI can be used to play a holographic playback sequence complete with colors across the spectrum based on information in memory banks. The ring can dictate when to pause or stop the playback should an interruption arise where the Lanterns undivided attention is needed. The AI can also alert the wielder of incoming threats or of attempts to manipulate the wielders construct by an outside party.
- Burglar Alarm: A Green Lantern can coat anything with the ring's beam and thus, if anyone other than himself touches it, his ring will glow, alerting him to the possible theft.
- Communicator: The ring can act as a personal communicator between Green Lanterns. They have also been seen connected to telephones.
- Costumes: The wearer of the ring may create any costume they choose, based on their personal preferences, whenever they choose. The ring projects the costume over any clothes already worn at the time.
- Energy Projection: The rings can also project beams, form protective bubbles and force fields, and fire destructive blasts. Sometimes, depending on the wearer, the beams and blasts make sounds. Kilowog's ring is one such example of blasts making sounds.
- Energy Constructs: The rings can construct anything the wearer can imagine from hard-light energy, as long as they are willing to make it. The more determined the wearer is, the more complex and intricate these things can be. The constructs can even be so complex as to form working machines, computers, and even people.
- Flight: The ring allows the wearer to fly in atmosphere or in space, and can achieve incredible speeds, moving from planet to planet in a matter of hours.
- Invisibility: The ring can make the wearer or anything else invisible.
- Matter Manipulation: A Green Lantern can use their ring to manipulate nearby matter, such as water, for various purposes such as a construct that acts like an energy construct but can block something yellow and may serve a purpose that an energy construct couldn't perform.
- Mind Control: The wearer of the Ring can use it to plant post hypnotic commands or control a person.
- Mirages: The Ring can create mirages/illusions.
- Phasing: The ring allows the user to go through walls.
- Power Absorbing: In the JLA's first fight with Amazo, it was GL who defeated him by drawing out all of Amazo's powers. In Green Lantern/Silver Surfer: Unholy Alliances, Kyle defeated Parallax with SS' power and Thanos with Oa's energy by drawing out all that extra energy from them which made them unconscious. However he couldn't hold all that power nor could his Ring like Hal did with Amazo's powers, so that move isn't often used with so much power.
- Probing: The ring can probe the Lantern's or another person's mind, allowing him to uncover memories or the person's thoughts.
- Radiation: Besides light based radiation used to create the energy constructs associated with a Green Lantern, the ring can simulate various forms of radiation. One example of this is the ability to simulate the radiation of Green Kryptonite, a form of radiation that is harmful to Superman. However, this ability is no longer valid and has been retconned.
- Recharging: The rings need to be recharged by means of a Power Battery. Other large sources of power may be used to recharge a power ring, however effectiveness may vary. The internal power source of a Manhunter Android is, in effect, the same as a power battery, and can be used to recharge a power ring. During the JLA/Avengers crossover, a Cosmic Cube was used to recharge a depleted ring, although this is not an ideal solution and is available if there are no other options.
- Ring Duplication: Each ring can duplicate itself, creating a second ring which may be given to another as a backup, for protection, or to help the lantern in times of great need. This duplicate ring is exactly like a normal ring.
- Temperature Control: The Ring can increase or decrease the temperature of anything, even something as large as stars, or even create bubbles of intense heat or cold, even down to Absolute Zero.
- Transforming: The ring can transform anyone or anything, be it into an animal, altering their state of appearance, or their size. Once Hal and Alan turned the two Flashes (Barry and Jay) to light protons in order to free them from prisons.
- Electro-magnetic scanning: The ring can allow(through the use of x rays) the user to see through walls, without the people on the other side knowing. it can also scan along the Electromagnetic spectrum.
- Wormhole/Warps: The ring can open wormholes to cut down on distance.
- Time travel: The ring allows the wielder the ability to travel through time, though the process requires great willpower.
- Healing: A wielder can command a ring to heal him/her/itself of any injures incurred. It can also heal others.
- Energy twin: The ring can create an energy copy of the wielder which is connected to the ring wielder, any information the twin gathers is transferred to the wielder upon touch while others cannot see this twin apart from fellow Green Lanterns.
- Pocket dimension: Within the ring is a pocket dimension which can altered to the wielders specification. It can be used to contain opponents.
- Sub-routines: The power rings have inner programmings or mechanisms which can executed without the users permission. One such sub-routine is the autoshield. This shield automatically protects a wielder from external harm and has been proven to be capable of protecting the wielder from planetary level attacks
- Mental Incapacitation: The ring cannot be wielded correctly if the wearer is under the influence of drugs or if there is an involvement of neural interference.
- Yellow Impurity: In the beginning the Green Ring was vulnerable to the color yellow. It was unable to defend against attacks from wielders of the Sinestro Corps as well. This weakness however has now been changed since Green Lantern: Rebirth and can be overcome by veterans who have the ability to overcome great fear.
- Recharge: Previously had to be recharged every 24 hours or when it has been depleted of energy. This can be accomplished if the bearer of the ring recites an oath into his power lantern while holding the ring to it. However now, the power ring only needs to be recharged when it runs out of energy.
- Red Lantern Corps. Bearers of the red ring have the ability to drain a Green Power Ring of its energy. The ring of a Blue Lantern however has the ability to charge a Green Lantern Ring or negate this negative effect.
- Ability To Kill: One of the main weaknesses of the Power Rings that greatly disturbed Sinestro was the fact that the bearers of the Green Lantern Ring were unable to kill. Recently however, this restriction on the rings has been lifted but murder is still against the law of the GL Corps.
- Green Lantern Status: Active
- Space Sector: 674
- Sector Partner: Unknown
- Homeworld: Bolivax Vik
- Predecessor: Branwilla (as GL of 674); Ermey (as drill sergeant)
- Successor: Not applicable; Stel (as drill sergeant)
In the Cartoon Network cartoon, Duck Dodgers, Dodgers goes to collect his dry cleaning but receives a green lantern costume along with a ring instead of his space uniform; the costume either belonged to Hal Jordan or Kyle Rayner because a brown haired man went to collect the Green Lantern costume. Later in the episode, Dodgers goes to Oa and meets Kilowog, they start off well but dodgers ends up showing himself to be a total idiot and causes Kilowog to be captured by Sinestro along with other green lanterns. In the end Dodger saves them in some Dumb luck heroic manner and Hal or Kyle get their costume and ring back. In this version, Kilowog was voiced by John DiMaggio
Superman the Animated Series, Justice League and Justice League Unlimited
Kilowog was in the Superman the Animated Series, Justice League and Justice League Unlimited. These appearances made him a big part of the DC Animated Universe or DCAU. He was voiced by actor Dennis Haysbert. Even though he did not have a speaking role in Superman the Animated Series he did have in important role in the DCAU
In the Justice League episode "In Blackest Night" Part One and Two, Kilowog was witness to John Stewart's trial of genocide and was the only Green lantern who believed he was innocent. He thought he may have been guilty at first but was convinced by Hawkgirl that he made a mistake. Later, in episode "Hearts and Minds" part One and Two Kilowog came under attack with some other Green lanterns by the forces of Despero. and was sent to the justice League for help. Two other Green Lantern were killed in this incident. It was at this time that he became friends with the Flash. He became such a good friend of the league that in the episode "Hereafter" he and some other Lantern came back to earth when Superman was believed to be dead.
During the time Justice League Unlimited in the episode "The Return" Kilowog was among the many forces who were asked to stop Amazo. All the Heroes that could be raised could not stand against Amazo but Amazo ended up not being a threat and the crisis was averted.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
Kilowog appeared in the episodes "Day of the Dark Knight" and "The Eyes of Despero" voiced by Diedrich Bader.
Green Lantern: The Animated Series
Kilowog appeared in all episodes in Green Lantern: The Animated Series except for the episode "The New Guy". He was one of the main characters of the show, and one of the Green Lanterns who stopped the Red Lantern invasion in season 1, and stopped the Manhunters in season 2.
In the direct to DVD animated movie Green Lantern: First Flight, Kilowog is part of the Green Lanterns who find Hal Jordan after he gets his ring for the first time. Kilowog does not like Hal at first but slowly sees his potential as a Lantern and backs him up near the end of the movie. Michael Madsen provided the voice of Kilowog in this movie.
In this film Kilowog is once again shown in his famous role as being the drill instructor of the Corps. He is first seen when he is contacting another member of those Corps who was shortly after attacked by shadow demons. One of the main origin stories that was focused on in the film was the beginning of Kilowog's training under his own drill instructor. He and 3 other Lanterns including Tomar-Re were put through the harshest of test without their rings to help them so that they could learn to rely on each other and other things in their environment rather than simply rely on the power of the Green Lantern Ring. Kilowog has a confrontation with his drill instructor when he argues with him about their training and how hard he is on him. After a brief fight where Kilowog was put down Salaak informs Kilowog's unit that their is an attack on a nearby planet that they must attend to. While there Kilowog's team members keep the civilians safe while their drill instructor engages the attacking army attempting to take over the planet. Kilowog arrives and tells his comrades to protect the civilians while he does a major sweep of Green energy that knocks out the ships in orbit and knocks down the invading army forces. Kilowog then runs to the side of his drill instructor who explains to him why he put them through all that he did and how he believes in him. He then dies in his arms and Kilowog creates an energy coffin for him while informing his other team mates that they need to collect the remaining army forces. Kilowog is later seen in their last stand against Kron as he begins his attack on Oa.
Killowog appears in the 2011 live-action Green Lantern film starring Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan, Mark Strong as Thaal Sinestro, and directed by Martin Campbell. Kilowog is voiced by Michael Clarke Duncan.