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Sinestro, the renegade Green Lantern (GL) created by writer John Broome and artist Gil Kane, first defied the Emerald Crusader in Green Lantern vol. 2 #7 (1961). The Guardians of the Universe, overseers of the intergalactic Green Lantern Corps, err when selecting the militant Sinestro of the planet Korugar to obtain their peacekeeping weapon, the power ring, and serve as the GL of space sector 1417. After distinguishing himself among the Corps, Sinestro abuses his power ring and oppresses his homeworld; the Guardians punitively strip him of the weapon and banish him to the antimatter universe of Qward. There he acquires a power ring made of yellow, the color against which the Corps' rings are ineffective, and vindictively spreads malice across the galaxy, placing him into conflict with Earth's Green Lantern, Hal Jordan. If his name weren't evidence enough, Sinestro's appearance left no question of his villainy. His prodigious cranium intimated his hubris, and his pointed ears, ubiquitous smirk, and red pigmentation suggested his Mephistophelian nature—he was unmistakably the polar opposite of the whitebread, handsome Jordan's knight-in-shining- armor GL. After five Green Lantern appearances between 1961 and 1963, Sinestro's visibility nearly trickled to a standstill until the mid-1970s, when he made a comeback (fighting GL, the Flash, and Superman, and joining the Secret Society of Super-Villains). Soon Sinestro was on television, as one of the Legion of Doom in the cartoon Challenge of the Super Friends (1978–1979), and in the live-action comedy special Legends of the Super-Heroes (1979), played by wiry, wacky comedian Charlie Callas. The DC Comics flashback miniseries Green Lantern: Emerald Dawn II (1991) disclosed that Sinestro was the GL who tutored neophyte Hal Jordan in the ways of the Green Lantern Corps. Sinestro preached intimidation, in violation of the Guardians' ethics and hinting at his eventual downfall. In the mid-1990s a power-drunk Jordan followed his mentor's footsteps when he rebelled against the Corps and killed several of his colleagues, breaking Sinestro's neck in a death duel. Jordan ultimately sacrificed his life to spare the galaxy in a redemptive epiphany. Resurrected in 2002, Sinestro resumed his assailment against GL when Jordan returned from the dead in the 2004–2005 miniseries Green Lantern: Rebirth. Readers discovered that Sinestro indirectly caused Jordan's fall from grace by freeing the imprisoned fear elemental Parallax, the entity which subliminally corrupted GL; “I made you a murderer, Hal Jordan,” sneered Sinestro in Rebirth #5. With both characters restored to status quo, the Green Lantern-versus-Sinestro enmity is, like the hero and villain themselves, reborn for the new millennium. Ted Levine voiced Sinestro in episodes of the animated Superman (1996–2000), Static Shock (2000–2004), and Justice League (2001–2004), and John DeLancie, Star Trek's Q, played Sinestro in the “Green Loontern” episode of Duck Dodgers (2003–present). Sinestro merchandising includes a Pocket Super Hero miniature, action figures, and a GL-versus-Sinestro coldcast porcelain statue.
The Supervillain Book: The Evil Side of Comics and Hollywood © 2006 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.