Capabilities of Green Lantern rings

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I watched Green Lantern: First Flight last night and a couple of things they did confused me because I didn't think GL rings were capable of doing what they did.

I thought that it was basically energy projection that could be shaped according to the wearer's will, so it could become solid and form objects without of course turning into those objects. He could make a cheeseburger but it would be solid energy shaped like a cheeseburger and could not be eaten.

What they did in the movie was use the ring to see through walls - how is that possible? Has it been done before? How is it explained that a ring that is basically only capable of energy projection can be used to do something like that? Or am I wrong and it can do more than that (besides functioning as a computer, GPS, etc. - I'm just talking about energy projection).

Another weird thing was when Boodikka created a rubbery cocoon thing around Hal to suffocate him. It was stretchy and malleable. Shouldn't that be impossible as well?
 

Random

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I haven't seen the movie but that sounds ridiculous. My understanding is that the ring is capable of creating anything and is only limited to the subjects mind which results in it only being used as basic force fields
 

Grocer Man

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I think the Green Lanterns need to play Scribblenauts as a training device.

But yeah, Random's pretty on the money. Most Lanterns just use generic force fields and only a few (like Kyle) have the imagination to back up such a weapon.

Also, the ring has certain limits. For instance, they can't make planets because it's too much of a strain on the ring.
 

Planet-man

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I've read several comics where he uses it to analyze stuff. In that Liberty And Justice one-shot, it has the entire recorded knowledge of the Guardians stored in it like a universal Wikipedia, and he scans a bacteria-covered meteorite with it to see if the ring recognizes them.

Seeing through walls doesn't seem like it would have to be much more than energy projection, at least by comic-book standards where that's how X-Rays work.
 

Iceshadow

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In Justice League Unlimited John Stewart used the ring to scan things or find footprints, as for the rubber thing, I don't see why that would be a problem since something like that would be between a "solid" construct like a boxing glove and a "soft" construct like a laser blast.
 

Jaggyd

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Yes, in canon, the ring can look through walls. It has also been able to do things like work as a scanning electron microscope, a deep space telescope, realign sub-atomic particles (was used in an almost alchemist's stone way), Universal translator, Universal Wiki/cloud database, cloaking/stealth, duplication of bearer as an energy construct (think solid energy hologram), etc. Like said before, the abilities are only limited by the bearer.
 

Random

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Personally, I think they should keep what a person can do very small. Because it would get too silly and too difficult for writers if you don't. In fact it would be interesting to have a GL event of a villain who can do more. But that meaning would be diminished if your average GL can do ridiculous things.
 

ProjectX2

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Exactly. The only limit is the will of the user.

Indeed. There is a reason why it is commonly known as the most powerful weapon in the universe. It has limitless potential.
 

Gemini

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I always figured the rings prevented blood cell degeneration using the energy somehow, so they don't need to breath. With the energy permeating every cell and such explaining the glow they give off.
 

Random

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I always figured the rings prevented blood cell degeneration using the energy somehow, so they don't need to breath. With the energy permeating every cell and such explaining the glow they give off.

I thought the glow was a thin force field that protects them from the vacuum of space. Though I like that explanation for beathing
 

Gothamite

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He could make a cheeseburger but it would be solid energy shaped like a cheeseburger and could not be eaten.

I was always under the impression that the hypothetical cheeseburger could potentially be eaten, provided the ring-user used enough willpower to will-into-existence the various ingredients, down to the atomic level. So you would have to be extremely, impossibly intelligent, but it could be done. The only problem is, once you discontinue the ring-construct of the cheeseburger, any nourishment you get from it would disappear from your body.

My understanding of it is that the ring is literally only limited to the user's imagination and willpower. Giving the rings specific boundaries (beyond the whole yellow thing) is silly to me.
 

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