Interview: Giancarlo Volpe discusses 'Green Lantern: The Animated Series'

Posted by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

The season finale of Green Lantern: The Animated Series is now less than a week away and that fills my heart with sadness. The Aya-Monitor aims to go back in time and reboot the universe... this time free of organic life. Razer has given up hope of stopping her peacefully and the Green Lantern Corps has exhausted their options. So, how will this all wrap up? I have no idea, but I was lucky enough to chat with Giancarlo Volpe, one of the show's developers, in the meantime!

Comic Vine: I've been blown away with the Aya / Razer relationship. I never expected such an emotional connection from a cartoon on my Saturday mornings. Can you give us some insight on what the development was like with that aspect of the show? And, do you plan on breaking our hearts (again)?!

Giancarlo Volpe: When I interviewed for this job, Bruce quickly pitched the broad strokes of the show. I'm paraphrasing, but it was essentially, "It's about Hal, his buddy Kilowog, this Red Lantern, and this robot. Oh, and the Red Lantern might have a love relationship with the robot or something." I sat forward in my chair when I heard that bit. We had a lot of "shipping" in Avatar the Last Airbender, and I always loved telling that aspect of the story. Even among the episodes of King of the Hill that I worked on, the ones about Bobbie's relationship with his neighbor Connie were always my favorites. So when we got blessings to have a romance in Green Lantern, we all kinda took the ball and ran with it.

I just really love Razer and Aya's dynamic - he's a fussy, short tempered bad boy and she's about as virginal as they come because she's barely been alive that long. She's growing up incredibly rapidly, and is so new to feeling emotions. Experiencing her first heart break is extra painful because she has little to no past painful emotions to compare it to. A lot of people remember the first time they got their heart broken, it felt like it was going to be the end of the world. Well it's no different for Aya, except in her case, it literally could mean the end of the world.

As far as the finale breaking your heart, you'll just have to tune in and see! :)

== TEASER ==

CV: If you had to pick just one episode as your favorite, which would it be and why?

GV: I love them all for various reasons, but the ones I've watched over and over again are Loss, Cold Fury, and the season finale, Dark Matter. The filmmaker in me is just incredibly proud of what we accomplished in those episodes. I've always said animation can be so much more than simply baby-sitter TV. And I think those episodes truly deliver.

Homecoming also gets an honorable mention, because I love how the good guys win and love conquers all. I'm cheesy like that.

CV: Were there ever plans to include non-Green Lantern related characters?

GV: I'm assuming you mean DC universe characters that don't normally appear in the GL comics? Yes, we got a hint of that by including the Thanagarians in episode 11. For the most part, we tried to keep the show based around everything that happens in the Green Lantern universe, namely because so much of it, especially the color spectrum stuff, had never been done before in animation. We were in no hurry to put, for example, Superman in the show mostly because we've seen plenty of him in other series and direct-to-videos. Had we gone for 6 seasons though, anything could have been possible.

CV: Which power ring would you want and why?

GV: If one were to pick me, it'd probably be the Blue Lanterns because I make a lot of my life choices on faith that everything will turn out for the better - sometimes to a level of naiveté. What I could probably use, however, is a Green ring. I need more will power, especially when it comes to eating too much.

CV: Who's your favorite character from each Corps?

GV: For the most part, it's the characters who appeared in the show - Hal, Kilowog, Guy Gardner, Carol, Saint Walker, Larfleeze, etc. That's one of the perks of my job - I get a pretty significant vote towards deciding who appears in the show.

CV: What other characters (comics in general) do you think deserve an animated show?

GV: I really like Soranik Natu, and her whole back story with Sinestro. I also like that her and Iolande bonded so well in the comics. I’m intrigued by the ridiculously over powered Sodam Yat, more in concept though than actually wanting to put him in the show. Every episode would have to involve him fighting aurem based weapons near a red sun. He's just a little ridiculous.

CV: Would you be able to elaborate a bit about what we have in store for us with these last few episodes?

GV: The stakes are getting exponentially cranked up as the Aya-Monitor gets further out of control. It's going to get really desperate for our heroes, while they wrestle with how to truly contain her. There's also going to be a lot of big scale battle scenes with lots of Manhunters, and more Green Lanterns on the screen than you've seen before in our series. And there will be feels. Lots and lots of feels.

CV: Can you tease any other projects you're working on?

GV: I can't say much right now, except that I'm still working at Warner Bros. Animation. I've worked on two projects since we wrapped Green Lantern, one of which takes place in the DC Universe, and other is so bizarre it’s not quite like anything I've worked on before. I'll be sure to tweet about them when I get permission to do so.

CV: Not a question, but thank you for GL:TAS. It really brings so much joy to my Saturday mornings and, if it is gone, I'm going to miss it a lot.

GV: Thank you so much for saying that. I know it might seem very bitter sweet right now, but it means a lot to know that people really enjoyed the series, even if it was a bit short lived. Who knows what the future has in store for Green Lantern? A part of me hopes his character will be a scene stealer in the live action Justice League, in the same way the Hulk was in the Avengers. Then the suits might change their stance on him being taboo. I promise, “Green Lantern” is not a curse word.

As Ganthet would say, "Whether this lantern burns or not Hal Jordan, hope will always remain."

CV: Thanks!

Don't forget to check out the season finale this Saturday morning on Cartoon Network! Also, you can talk with Giancarlo over on Twitter.

Gregg Katzman is a freelance writer for Comic Vine and IGN Entertainment. He wants to live in an alternate universe where GL:TAS made action figures and was renewed for another season. Chat with him on Twitter.

#1 Posted by ptigrusmagus (495 posts) - - Show Bio

Wish GL: TAS would go on forever, it has been appointment viewing.

#2 Posted by Shieldbearer (83 posts) - - Show Bio

@ptigrusmagus: Agreed. I loved the show.

#3 Posted by Captain13 (3564 posts) - - Show Bio

This show rocks and Hal Jordan rocked. He really deserves another chance on the big screen. =(

Green Lantern by Jeremy Roberts

It's not his fault that Warner put terrible writers on his film. I wish Barry Allen, Clark Kent, and Victor Stone appeared on this show before it got canned.

#4 Posted by kuma_far (510 posts) - - Show Bio

T_T I wanted moooooore! T-T

This show was awesome Y-Y

#5 Posted by monitor_earthprime (82 posts) - - Show Bio

The movie sucked on so many levels but the cartoon has bee great. I would have loved to have seen the other rainbow lanterns and the DC Universe space characters shown up. It would have been fun to see Captain Comet, Space Cabby, Ultra the Multi-Alien, Space Ranger, L.E.G.I.O.N. and others in animated form.

#6 Posted by lifeboy (1675 posts) - - Show Bio

Which lantern ring would I want? The orange ring!

K4tzm4n,don't be telling people to buy orange rings anymore. They are all my rings! And don't be looking at my green lantern the animated series. That's my show so don't look at it. And stop using my internet! D-:(

#7 Edited by lifeboy (1675 posts) - - Show Bio

No, but seriously, I liked mr Volpe's decision to keep the GL's away from the DCUniverse because the biggest attraction I have for the green lanterns is that they are in deep space and can explore so many different alien species. It would just be awesome to write anything for the lanterns because of this.

*edit* the only thing I would have gone different withis the body porportions on the charachters. I liked the cgi but the enormous uppr body on hal and the short legs on kilowogg were a major detraction.

#8 Posted by longbowhunter (7694 posts) - - Show Bio

Because of the animation it took me a while to warm up to this show. But after a time I loved it like I loved Young Justice. Soranik would have been cool to see. Being a doctor I always liked seeing what kinds of constructs she could make and exactly how much she could achieve by wielding the ring. My Saturday's wont be the same without this show.

#9 Posted by Mbecks14 (2029 posts) - - Show Bio

I wish this show had gotten the second season it deserves. It's incredibly epic.

#10 Posted by Fastblender (54 posts) - - Show Bio

Ah, the fine piece of cinema that is the Green Lantern movie. It continues to haunt us, like the specter of a black lantern. Without it, we'd have probably seen at least 2 more years of the animated series. Instead the Green Lantern movie merchandise stunk up the isles at retail, causing retailers to decine any product with a emerald fashion accessory. The GL animated toy line was scrapped, CW saw next to nothing in merchandise profits, and the show gets axed without any consideration of the quality of this cartoon. Well, at least we got to see that great matchbox car construct up on the big screen, right?

#11 Posted by TheMtVernonKid82 (61 posts) - - Show Bio

ANOTHER GREAT SHOW GONE!!! And what are we getting in place of this and Young Justice another Batman cartoon (do we really need one?) and Teen Titans GO! Give me a break. Remember when Cartoon Network was the s&@t?

#12 Posted by BlueLantern1995 (2448 posts) - - Show Bio

I'll miss this show a lot. Series finale is up this weekend, I'll make sure to have my hankie at the ready just in case.

#13 Edited by ptigrusmagus (495 posts) - - Show Bio

GL TAS is one of my fav toons and I've been watching most of them since Batman TAS and X-Men. I will try not to hold the network's decisions against the new shows but GL TAS and Young Justice will be replaced by Beware the Batman! and Teen Titans Go!, meh. Perhaps Cartoon Network feels the exclamation points will improve their sales....=(

#14 Posted by EdBlank (573 posts) - - Show Bio

Agreed. Awesome show. Cartoon Network airs "Annoying Orange" and "Loiter Squad"... Aqua Teens have been on TV for thirteen years... Let that sink in.

#15 Posted by MuyJingo (2172 posts) - - Show Bio

How about an interview with the producer of Young Justice?

#16 Posted by ThreadPool (100 posts) - - Show Bio

@MuyJingo said:

How about an interview with the producer of Young Justice?

THIS!!!

Young Justice gets zero love here. Very strange considering how great it is.

I really like GL too. It was about hit it's prime, but Young Justice is in it's prime.

#17 Edited by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

@ThreadPool said:

@MuyJingo said:

How about an interview with the producer of Young Justice?

THIS!!!

Young Justice gets zero love here. Very strange considering how great it is.

I really like GL too. It was about hit it's prime, but Young Justice is in it's prime.

I'm pretty sure Tony posts an article with preview images for the upcoming episode every week.

Edit: Ah, here we go. Here's the one he posted for the latest episode.

And if you're going to ask why it doesn't get reviewed, I'll answer that again. I'm not as emotionally invested in the show as others, and reviewing it with this mindset wouldn't be fair. I haven't watched a majority of season 1, and I feel that would be required for reviewing the show. Tony, on the other hand, doesn't have time to include that in his busy schedule.

#18 Posted by MuyJingo (2172 posts) - - Show Bio

@k4tzm4n: It's fine that you don't review episodes YJ, but since you're providing content to a wide range of readers, many who like Young Justice, perhaps more than like GL:TAS, would organizing an interview with the producer of that show be so hard? Even when you posted the Save GL show campaign, YJ was mentioned as a footnote...why couldn't they have both been in the headline? It's true that YJ doesn't get a lot of love. That you don't like it as much doesn't more could not be written about it, especially when there are many readers wanting it.

#19 Posted by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

@MuyJingo: Young Justice hasn't done any recent reviews (after a quick search it appears the last ones were to promote the new season) and, if they present the opportunity for one, I'm sure they'll reach out to Tony about it since he's the one on their mailing list. However, I regularly chat with Giancarlo on Twitter and spotted he did an interview for another site. So, I figured there's no harm in asking and poof, I was lucky enough to get a green light for it. Additionally, I have zero Young Justice contacts, so there's also that.

#20 Posted by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

@EdBlank said:

Agreed. Awesome show. Cartoon Network airs "Annoying Orange" and "Loiter Squad"... Aqua Teens have been on TV for thirteen years... Let that sink in.

I say that as someone who used to love ATHF, too.

#21 Posted by ThreadPool (100 posts) - - Show Bio

@MuyJingo said:

@k4tzm4n: It's fine that you don't review episodes YJ, but since you're providing content to a wide range of readers, many who like Young Justice, perhaps more than like GL:TAS, would organizing an interview with the producer of that show be so hard? Even when you posted the Save GL show campaign, YJ was mentioned as a footnote...why couldn't they have both been in the headline? It's true that YJ doesn't get a lot of love. That you don't like it as much doesn't more could not be written about it, especially when there are many readers wanting it.

That's my real complaint. (I do a lot of that, huh?)

@k4tzm4n: I've seen the previews. Okay. Great. Several sites do that. I'm not saying GL doesn't deserve the extra effort, but your rebuttal is a 30 second clip and some screenshots. Meh.

#22 Posted by BlueLantern1995 (2448 posts) - - Show Bio

As much as I love Young Justice only the last episode on the same level as Season 1(and that was only the average of season 1). Why do people keep on complaining about Young Justice not being mentioned in the title or it being a footnote in the Lets Save Green Lantern Animated Series article?

I'm sick of it. And here is a lot of it. Just get over the one gets favored over the other mentality. Its really getting old and this doesn't just apply to this topic but to all topics.

#23 Posted by MuyJingo (2172 posts) - - Show Bio

@ThreadPool said:

@k4tzm4n: I've seen the previews. Okay. Great. Several sites do that. I'm not saying GL doesn't deserve the extra effort, but your rebuttal is a 30 second clip and some screenshots. Meh.

@k4tzm4n said:

@MuyJingo: Young Justice hasn't done any recent reviews (after a quick search it appears the last ones were to promote the new season) and, if they present the opportunity for one, I'm sure they'll reach out to Tony about it since he's the one on their mailing list. However, I regularly chat with Giancarlo on Twitter and spotted he did an interview for another site. So, I figured there's no harm in asking and poof, I was lucky enough to get a green light for it. Additionally, I have zero Young Justice contacts, so there's also that.

That's fine, but can you honestly say you make the same effort for GLTAS stuff as you do for YJ? Basically, the fact that you like GL more, are more invested in it, should not influence that you write more about it at the expense of other shows that have a larger or same size fanbase.

#24 Posted by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

@MuyJingo said:

@ThreadPool said:

@k4tzm4n: I've seen the previews. Okay. Great. Several sites do that. I'm not saying GL doesn't deserve the extra effort, but your rebuttal is a 30 second clip and some screenshots. Meh.

@k4tzm4n said:

@MuyJingo: Young Justice hasn't done any recent reviews (after a quick search it appears the last ones were to promote the new season) and, if they present the opportunity for one, I'm sure they'll reach out to Tony about it since he's the one on their mailing list. However, I regularly chat with Giancarlo on Twitter and spotted he did an interview for another site. So, I figured there's no harm in asking and poof, I was lucky enough to get a green light for it. Additionally, I have zero Young Justice contacts, so there's also that.

That's fine, but can you honestly say you make the same effort for GLTAS stuff as you do for YJ? Basically, the fact that you like GL more, are more invested in it, should not influence that you write more about it at the expense of other shows that have a larger or same size fanbase.

No, and I haven't said that. I disagreed with it getting zero love, because to me that implies it's gets no attention at all. That's simply not true because Tony does indeed post something about it on a weekly basis.

Should we cover YJ more? Of course, but you need to keep the following in mind:

  • We have a very limited writing staff which is already very busy with the features we're working on for the entire week. So we're obviously not going to cover everything and some things won't get a fair amount of coverage (Arrow, for example).
  • Unless it's big news, reviews or an interview opportunity presented by the source, we're going to cover the things we love because we're stretched so thin as it is. I love GL: TAS. Know what I don't love? YJ. Is that unfair? Yup, it sure is. Would it be more "fair" to include it in those pieces and get it coverage? Sure would. But the pieces you're criticizing are both opinion-based pieces. I sought out this interview opportunity because I wanted to, and I wrote the other piece because I wanted to. Both were ideas I came up with and, seeing as there's already so much support in the forums for YJ, I wanted to give GL: TAS the extra attention I feel it deserves. I'm spending the little free time I have writing about the things I want to for the site.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have no interest in further derailing this thread. It's meant to talk about Green Lantern: The Animated Series, not debate what Comic Vine chooses to cover. If you feel I'm doing a poor job in my work, then by all means reach out to Tony or message me via a PM.

#25 Posted by lifeboy (1675 posts) - - Show Bio

This has been the worst behavior I have ever seen from DC fans! Some of you who posted here should be ashamed for trolling k4tzm4n. I haven't even seen this kind of behavior from marvel fans! You shame YJ, DC, GL:TAS and this article by acting this way.

#26 Posted by inferiorego (28274 posts) - - Show Bio

Great interview and all, but why can't this be an interview with the guy who created Love Boat?

Now that's what I call excitement!

Staff
#27 Posted by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

@lifeboy said:

This has been the worst behavior I have ever seen from DC fans! Some of you who posted here should be ashamed for trolling k4tzm4n. I haven't even seen this kind of behavior from marvel fans! You shame YJ, DC, GL:TAS and this article by acting this way.

It's okay, man. They're just passionate about the show and wish it had more representation on the homepage. But yeah, I'd obviously prefer if this thread was used to talk about... you know, Green Lantern: The Animated Series :)

@inferiorego said:

Great interview and all, but why can't this be an interview with the guy who created Love Boat?

Now that's what I call excitement!

#28 Posted by ThreadPool (100 posts) - - Show Bio

@lifeboy: Really? -_- Just pointing something out... He told us the proper way to reach him. The end.

And Green Lantern is awesome! Too bad it's going away. Here's to a hopeful return to this universe one day!

#29 Posted by SmashBrawler (5978 posts) - - Show Bio

I sure am gonna miss this series. Lots of wasted potential.

#30 Posted by inferiorego (28274 posts) - - Show Bio

@k4tzm4n: lol

Staff
#31 Posted by modunhanul (415 posts) - - Show Bio

Are you there, God? Please, please, please, don't let them cancel GL TAS.

#32 Posted by monkeyonurback_ (84 posts) - - Show Bio

CN execs really need to swing by comicvine forums some time

#33 Posted by Oedipus_Rex (40 posts) - - Show Bio

Isn't there another channel that Warner Bros. can shop their shows to? I think Cartoon Network has shown they're shooting for the bottom the last year or so. They want the cheap shows with the crappy animation. I guess that's all we can expect from basic cable.

#34 Posted by june27 (14 posts) - - Show Bio
#35 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6836 posts) - - Show Bio

Sad to see it go, yes, but I'll definitely be looking forward to this conclusion :)

#36 Edited by k4tzm4n (34907 posts) - - Show Bio

@modunhanul said:

Are you there, God? Please, please, please, don't let them cancel GL TAS.

We banned God last week. He/it/whatever you believe was trolling DBZ threads.

#37 Posted by modunhanul (415 posts) - - Show Bio

@k4tzm4n said:

@modunhanul said:

Are you there, God? Please, please, please, don't let them cancel GL TAS.

We banned God last week. He/it/whatever you believe was trolling DBZ threads.

Oh, okay, I'm sorry.

#38 Posted by TheCannon (19394 posts) - - Show Bio

@Mbecks14 said:

I wish this show had gotten the second season it deserves. It's incredibly epic.

Agreed.

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