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Superman Abandoned Green Lantern in the Justice League's Last Mission

Warning! Spoilers for Justice League: Last Ride #4 ahead!

When it comes to his friends, the Man of Steel is as loyal as they come, but that famous loyalty once caused Superman to abandon Green Lantern during the Justice League’s most dangerous mission. Clark Kent is the best friend a person could have, and he’ll literally move mountains for his loved ones. But unfortunately, even Superman can’t be everywhere at once - and he has a lot of friends.

Chip Zdarsky and Miguel Mendonça’s Justice League: Last Ride #4 shows just how deeply Clark cares about his friends, but it also shows what finally shatters the titular team in a dramatic flashback. With the Justice League waging a multi-front war against Darkseid and the forces of Apokolips, the heroes’ forces are spread thin. And when one of his teammates must pay the ultimate price to save the Earth, Superman refuses to stand by and listen.

Related: Green Lantern Almost Turned the Justice League Into Marvel's X-Force

With Apokolips' forces on the verge of victory, the Justice League are in dire straits. Batman and Martian Manhunter have infiltrated Darkseid’s control center on Apokolips to de-power their demonic weapons while both Superman and Green Lantern fight to protect Oa from Darkseid himself. Batman realizes that the only way to stop the weapons and save the Earth is for someone to de-power Apokolips' fiery core. Unfortunately, Wonder Woman is critically injured, and Oa is too far from Apokolips for Superman to get there in time, so Martian Manhunter volunteers to enter the flames and save the world at the cost of his life. Over their communications channel, Superman practically begs Batman and J’onn to rethink their plan even as Darkseid pummels him and Green Lantern. But when his pleading goes unanswered, Clark futility rockets away from Oa in hopes of saving Manhunter, leaving Hal Jordan to fend for himself.

Superman wants to save everyone he can, and in that moment, he feels that J’onn is in the most danger. As one of the most powerful Green Lanterns, Clark knows that Green Lantern will be able to hold his own, at least long enough to survive Darkseid’s onslaught without him. But his actions still leave Hal and Oa vulnerable.

Martian Manhunter is one of the League’s heaviest hitters, and he is the only one close enough to get the job done. Superman may be an amazing friend, but that friendship can get in the way sometimes. Clark has a hard time with letting other people risk their lives, even if it’s the only way to save the day, because he thinks saving the day is all his responsibility. And it is this perceived responsibility to J’onn that overrides his responsibility to Green Lantern, even in the face of Darkseid.

Luckily there’s no sign of hard feelings between Green Lantern and Superman, but the same can’t be said for the Worlds’ Finest duo. The Last Son of Krypton is a great hero and friend, but those two identities don’t always work well together. No matter how hard he tries, Superman can’t always be everywhere he needs to be, and he and the Justice League have to live with the fallout.

Next: Superman Just Demolished His Real-Life Haters

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