the green hornet

Writer Mark Waid launches a new Green Hornet series for Dynamite Entertainment and the first issue is a must-read. Set in November of 1941, Green Hornet #1 reintroduces the characters of the Green Hornet and Kato while providing narration from a far older version of Britt Reid looking back at the heyday of his career as he fought crime both as the owner of the Daily Sentinel and as a masked crime fighter masquerading as a crime lord.

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Director Michel Gondry and star/co-writer Seth Rogen set out to do their version of the Green Hornet. They’ve succeeded. This is unlike any Green Hornet I’ve seen, and probably as far removed from my idea of who these characters are as could be done and still title the film The Green Hornet. In fact, the main character is so unrecognizable you have to wonder why even use the Green Hornet characters instead of simply making an original film.

The Green Hornet debuted on radio in the 1930’s alongside other popular programs such as The Lone Ranger and The Shadow. Since then the character has bounced around comics, low budget movie serials, and, most notably, the 60’s television show starring Van Williams and Bruce Lee.

Seth Rogen’s dumbed-down concept of the character has a few key differences to what’s come before. Britt Reid (Rogen) is no longer the brilliant media mogul taking on the underworld. In Rogen’s version he’s a spoiled rich kid who has squandered his life and is faced with the insurmountable task of taking on his father’s (Tom Wilkinson) newspaper after his death. The whole fighting crime thing is more a drunken brainstorm than any sense of responsibility or wish for justice.

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