Engine City

Coast City
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Showcase #22 (September–October 1959)
In story information
Type City
Notable people Hal Jordan
Carol Ferris

Coast City is a fictional city created by John Broome and Gil Kane that appears in stories published by DC Comics. It is depicted most often as the home of the Silver Age version of the superhero Green Lantern, Hal Jordan.

Fictional history

Coast City, which first appeared in Showcase #22 in September–October 1959, was a city located in California. This made it one of the few fictional cities in the DC Universe to have a specifically given location from the start.

Coast City was usually portrayed as an analogue of San Diego or Los Angeles or the Jersey Shore.[1] Green Lantern: Rebirth identified it as being in Northern California, and recent issues of Green Lantern listed it as being twenty miles from Edwards Air Force Base.


In the 1990s, Coast City was destroyed, with nearly all of its residents - then numbered at seven million - killed by Mongul. Mongul's gigantic ship appeared over Coast City and released thousands of spherical bombs which detonated simultaneously. It was then revealed that Mongul was doing the bidding of former astronaut Hank Henshaw, better known as the Cyborg Superman. Mongul and Henshaw built Engine City in Coast City's ashes, as part of a plot to turn Earth into the new Warworld, the two intending to strike a double blow against the recently deceased Superman by claiming his world for themselves and framing him as the agent responsible for his planet's destruction.[2] This plan was stopped by the real Superman after his resurrection, with the help of Superboy, Steel, and Hal Jordan, who had just returned from space to find his home destroyed.[3]

Killed in the blast were numerous supporting characters of the Green Lantern comic books, including Kari Limbo and several Ferris Aircraft employees. Jordan attempted to resurrect the city using his ring and learned that his first girlfriend had also died in the blast.

In the near-future, a government time-travel experiment attempted to take the first step to prove their worth by going back in time to prevent Henshaw becoming the Cyborg and destroying Coast City, but Booster Gold was forced to go back in time and stop the renegade time-traveler to preserve the timeline. During his time in the past, Booster saved a little girl who would go on to become his adopted daughter- after Skeets confirmed that history had no record of her death-, as well as his time-lost sister Michelle Carter, but they were unable to save her then-boyfriend as history recorded that he had died in the blast.

The city's destruction drove Hal Jordan to become the villain Parallax, due to a mental breakdown from grief, though it was later revealed that he was also under the influence of the yellow emotional entity named Parallax. Jordan slaughtered nearly all the Green Lanterns, absorbed the energies of the Power Battery, and tried to rewrite history. This led to the appointment of a new Green Lantern, Kyle Rayner. A memorial to Coast City's victims was erected on the site of the city with the help of most of the major superheroes of the period.

For a time, an alien city named Haven that had crashed on Earth resided on top of the ruins of Coast City.

When Hal Jordan died saving the world, the heroes memorialized him. An eternal flame was constructed in the ruins of the city. Swamp Thing used his powers to fill the surrounding area with greenery.[4]

When Hal Jordan from early in his career was pulled into the future during an encounter with Kyle Rayner,[5] a version of Parallax from when he attempted to restart history[6] attempted to convince his younger self to go along with his plans by taking himself, his younger self and Kyle back to Coast City at the moment of its own destruction, freezing time in the second before the bombs struck. Despite this, the younger Hal refused to go along with Parallax's plan, the two fighting in the frozen city before Kyle convinced them that they both had to return to their own times.[7]

The villain Remnant attempted to depict Superman as a devil by blaming him for the deaths caused in Doomsday's rampage. Superman confronted a reporter writing an article about the anniversary of the rampage, and asked him to consider: if Superman weren't around, would there be fewer Doomsdays (monsters seeking to confront Superman), or more Coast Cities (disasters that occurred because Superman wasn't available to prevent them)?

It was later revealed that Hank Henshaw chose to destroy Coast City to erase his former life on Earth; he and his wife, Terri Henshaw, were previous residents of Coast City.[8]


More recently, Coast City was rebuilt in the wake of Jordan's resurrection. While the Spectre, Hal Jordan, and the Parallax parasite were wrestling for control of the Spectre's powers, all roads, street signs, and Jordan's apartment reappeared. 'Haven' also vanished from the site.[9]

Populating the rebuilt city became one of the latest initiatives of Jonathan Vincent Horne, President of the United States. Charities and industries around the world, including Wayne Enterprises, contributed to a fund for rebuilding the city. Despite all those efforts, Coast City remained a ghost town due to its reputation as the site of a mass murder. Among the exceptions was Hal Jordan, who lived in Coast City when he wasn't working at nearby Edwards Air Force Base as one of their test pilots. Hal's nephew attends a school with a student body of fewer than twenty.[10]

The U.S. Navy established a presence in the region, as both a domestic security and economic stimulus measure.[11]

One year after the events of Infinite Crisis, Coast City finished reconstruction. During the Sinestro Corps War, it was targeted for destruction by Sinestro and the terrorist organization that bears his name. Hal Jordan used his ring to contact every citizen, urging them to evacuate the city. En masse, they decided to stay. Many shined green lights from their homes to indicate their support.[12] Jordan and Kyle Rayner defended the city from the rogue Corps' attacks, and Sinestro was defeated on the rooftops of Coast City.

In the aftermath, the city's population rose dramatically, and many businesses and citizens returned. Available living space was rapidly filled. The new Coast City was dubbed "The City Without Fear" by the news media. The damage from the Sinestro Corps battle was repaired by Green Lantern John Stewart, with help from the Green Lantern Corps and Earth's superheroes.[13]

By the time of the Final Crisis, Coast City's population was cited on local promotional billboards as 2,686,164.[14]

"Blackest Night"

As of the beginning of the 2010 miniseries Blackest Night, the population had increased to 2,765,321. A new memorial was erected to commemorate the city's history; it includes a green lantern, lighted by Hal Jordan, John Stewart, Guy Gardner, and Kyle Rayner.[15] In the course of the story, the Black Lantern Corps' central power battery teleports to just outside Coast City, bringing forth the demon Nekron, (the black personification of Death and longtime enemy of the Green Lantern Corps) the undead Guardian Scar, and Black Hand. The Anti-Monitor also emerges from the battery but is defeated before exiting. Nekron then sends forth black rings into the city's memorial, reanimating the dead as Black Lanterns.[16] Nekron is then defeated in the streets of Coast City.[17]


The Atlas of the DC Universe published by Mayfair Games in 1990, placed Coast City in northern California, between San Francisco and Green Arrow's Star City.

Ferris Aircraft is an aerospace company which Hal Jordan worked for as a test pilot, it is located twenty five miles out from the city.[18] His romantic interest, Carol Ferris, was the company's manager. Coast City also included an extensive beach, and was a popular spot for surfing.

When the city was destroyed, a news broadcast in the comic showed a map locating Coast City a little south of Santa Barbara, California.

In I, Vampire #3, which was part of the 2011 relaunch The New 52, Coast City was established to be in the Mountain Standard Time zone, making the city landlocked.

In other media

  • Coast City briefly appeared in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Hail the Tornado Tyrant!". The Tornado Tyrant attempted to wipe it out with a massive tidal wave, but was stopped by Batman and Red Tornado. It also appeared in "Sidekicks Assemble!" by being the place where Ra's al Ghul infests the city with his evil plants. It later appears in "Scorn of the Star Sapphire" when the Zamarons take control of Carol Ferris.
  • In the 2005 Batman Begins, a corrupt cop can be heard saying, "Yeah, I bought the boat. Me and the wife are taking it over to Coast City next weekend."
  • Coast City is mentioned by name by Hal Jordan, in the animated film Green Lantern: First Flight, when he talks to Appa Ali Apsa. Hal compares Green Lanterns to cops in their precincts, and says his uncle was a cop in the Coast City police force.
  • Coast City appears in the 2011 film Green Lantern. The name of the city appears during a television newscast.
  • Coast City appears in DC Universe Online.
  • Coast City is mentioned in the Arrow episodes "Legacies" and "The Huntress Returns".


External links

  • Coast City on Smallville Wiki


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