This story was all sorts of badass. First, it had Geoff Johns returning Hal Jordan to all his glory - his rightful place as comicdom's premiere Green Lantern - and second, it had Ethan Van Sciver bringing it all so brilliantly to life.
For Hal to come back from everything he'd done, it was going to take all the finesse of a master writer and all the WILL Hal could muster. This book had to be perfect and, thankfully, it was. The GL universe wouldn't be what it is today without the success of GL: Rebirth.
Also, this is the limited series that kicked off Johns' epic decade-spanning run on GL. Oh, and who can forget Hal knocking Batman on his ass? "One punch!" Bow down, poozers.
It wouldn't seem right not including Johns' final issue on the series. This was where everything was resolved (more than many of us thought, considering how much of the future was revealed). Needless to say, Johns' ending more than lived up to everything that came before it. We got to see Hal and Sinestro (the friendship that defined the series) finish their journeys. Sinestro got to become Parallax (BEAST MODE) and Hal got to face death once and for all by becoming the Black Lantern (MEGA BEAST MODE).
Yeah, this comic had it all. It was so rich with material and final resolutions that it was basically a mini-trade, to be honest. Talk about bang for your buck!
Seeing Hal's journey come to an end, in such astounding fashion, is just the icing on the cake. Johns not only delivered the perfect routine, he stuck the landing with this spectacular issue.
Less a story about the Justice League and more a story about DC's Silver Age AND, more still, a story about Green Lantern Hal Jordan. A killer origin by Darwyn Cooke that perfectly captures 1950s sentiment while never losing sight of that childlike sense of wonder that makes Green Lantern who he is.
Green Lantern was Cooke's favorite superhero when he was boy and it really shows in this story, which is basically a love letter to the character. Batman and Superman take a back seat for a change - and I love it. This story is about the rise of the NEW hero, taking center stage, and that hero is Green Lantern!
Most often referred to as the highpoint of Johns' run. I don't like to view it as "high" or "low" points, personally as I think it was ALL a tremendous high point. Regardless, it's hard enough ranking these things as it is.
Sinestro Corps War is one of the few events that really stuck with me and actually lived up to the hype. For that alone, it's worth a spot on this list but, as we all know, this story is so much more than that. It built on Rebirth and laid much of the groundwork for what was to come. Not to mention it solidified Sinestro as one DC's most sinister baddies, as well as the perfect foil for Hal Jordan.
The prophecy of the Blackest Night was foretold and hinted at for years by Geoff Johns and, with this, we finally got to see all his hard work pay off. This was everything Johns was building up to with Green Lantern, and it was great to see GL becoming one of the most popular superhero books at the time and taking center stage in the DC Universe.
Denny O'Neill, Neal Adams, and two of the greenest badasses this side of awesome. Yep, this classic run had two of DC's biggest personalities going at it. Not only that, but we got to see them pave the way for future comic books through their social commentary and relevance.
Hal Jordan acts as the audience's connection to the story. He's the character we most empathize and associate with throughout the story, so we really learned with Hal along the way as Ollie gives him (and the rest of us) a reality check.
See the origin told in canon and in depth. I enjoy the simplicity of Darwyn's Silver Age reimagining, but as far as modern origin stories guy, this one is right up there with the best of 'em. Especially considering Johns' expert worldbuilding and Reis' ridiculously astounding visuals.
Darwyn Cooke and Geoff Johns' "Flight" was only one issue, but it was one issue of utter badassery. These are the two greatest Hal Jordan contributors in my mind (along with Denny O'Neill of course) so this one is a no-brainer.