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Review: Green Lantern rollercoaster at Six Flags Great Adventure

Green Lantern rollercoaster sign
Our rating:
3
User rating:
Your rating: None Average: 2.7 (30 votes)
(3 user reviews)

On May 25, 2011, Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, New Jersey unveiled its newest coaster, Green Lantern, a 154 feet tall, 63 miles per hour thrill ride. Situated next to Superman: Ultimate Flight, Green Lantern replaces the Great American Scream Machine, a Six Flags mainstay for over 20 years. Like its neighbor, Green Lantern is named after a DC Comics superhero, however, it delivers a very different experience, having the rider stand fully upright during the entire two-and-a-half minute ride.

Although new to Six Flags Great Adventure, Green Lantern has been in the Six Flags family since 1997. Previously located at Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom, this 4155 feet long beast went by the name of Chang. Built by Bolliger & Mabillard, the coaster debuted to world record breaking proportions as the fastest, longest, and tallest stand-up coaster in the world.

Green Lantern front view

Green Lantern is a colorful addition to Six Flags Great Adventure.

After a quick make-over, the once entirely yellow Chang transformed into Green Lantern, coinciding with the June 17 release of the major motion picture by the same name. Although mostly painted over green in line with the character it's portraying, the first inversion remains yellow. Debatably, this could be a nod to its previous life as Chang, or could refer to "fear" as yellow depicts fear in the comic book. With 5 inversions in total including a 121-foot-tall loop and an initial 45 degree vertical drop, you'll definitely be experiencing some "fear" during this ride.

First impressions

Overlooking the parking lot, Green Lantern and Superman are the first two coasters you see as you make your way to the entrance of the park. Initially, Green Lantern seems to meld into Kingda Ka, also green, however, the record breaking Kingda Ka is terrifyingly taller than the rather average (for Six Flags and regular rollercoaster standards) Green Lantern.

Green Lantern front view

Green Lantern's entrance is heavily themed to tie in with the comic strip and movie.

Once you enter the park and make your way to the coaster, you are greeted by some fantastic thematic props. A giant Hal Jordan cut-out, the first earthman ever inducted into the Green Lantern Corps, looms overheard. In front of him, a similarly sized Green Lantern replica, the "charging station" for the source of Green Lanterns' power, their power rings, greets you. This was a nice, albeit crowded, place to snap a photo.

Green Lantern/Kingda Ka comparison
Comic strips provide some entertainment for waiting guests.

The line begins outside the entrance and around the corner from the coaster, looking onto Superman and a rock climbing wall. Once you make your way through the roped-off line, you enter the real queue. Some nice touches include large comic strip panels outlining the Green Lantern story, from Hal Jordan's childhood to his induction into the Green Lantern Corps, the intergalactic group of officers charged with protecting the universe.

Green Lantern jet theming

The jet may not have quite enough runway to achieve take-off.

In addition, as you make your way through the queue, you come upon a very realistic, full-size replica of Hal Jordan's jet aircraft. As you make your way through the line, there is definitely a bit of whimsy and fun that adds to the overall thematic experience. With these very special touches, you truly feel connected to the Green Lantern story.

Boiling in the sun

The queue line itself, however, is ridiculous. It winds around and around, and though signs show wait times of around 60 minutes, you can, on weekends, expect to wait three times as long. While making your way through the line, you will notice that half the queue is covered, however, the other half is not, and on hot days, this is brutal. You do have refreshments offered every now and then for purchase on the line, however, they are snatched up pretty quickly, and mainly consist of popcorn and lemonade, neither of which will quench your thirst.

Green Lantern train close-up

Waiting riders get a close-up view of Green Lantern in action.

When you emerge from the covered queue area, however, you are directly under the ride. Quite literally, you are close enough to see riders’ faces as they careen overhead. This is a pretty amazing view from both the viewpoint of the soon-to-be-rider standing in the queue line, and the actual rider (unless you close your eyes…don’t judge me). Watching the car whip around loops and inversions and fly overhead adds to the fear and excitement building inside of you.

Strapping in

Green Lantern boarding instructions

Green Lantern's riding position is a little unorthodox for a coaster.

Once you finally make your way through the brutally long, and brutally hot line, you board one of Green Lantern's trains. Most of the time, strapping yourself into a ride, or waiting for the attendant to help you, is a fairly easy and short process. However, it takes a bit longer with the stand up element added. You straddle a bicycle-like seat and are locked into place with a harness. Full disclosure - this is not very comfortable. The seat seems to dig into you even though you are told to stand fully upright.

Careening through the air

Once everyone is finally locked into place, you slowly begin your ascent to the initial 45 degree drop. When you finally reach the drop (which feels like forever) the ride takes off, beginning with the initial yellow colored loop and quickly contorting and careening through the air into the other green loops and inversions. So quickly, in fact, that your stomach doesn't know if it should drop or fall out of your mouth. You are told prior to the ride to hold onto the harness, but honestly, that was a given, I held on for dear life.

Green Lantern front view

Inversions are a major feature of Green Lantern's circuit.

The coaster, although uncomfortable, is rather exciting as you speed through numerous inversions at quite a high speed. Adrenaline rushes through you as the wind whips across your face. When you are in the air, the ride overlooks the parking lot, the queue line, and Superman: Ultimate Flight. However, most of the time, you’re going through so many inversions at such high speeds that it’s a bit difficult to concentrate on your surroundings. Although the ride starts off slow, and it's a full two-and-a-half minutes, it's over rather quickly. Wobbling off, you emerge onto stable ground, confused as to whether the over three hour wait was worth it.

Our thoughts

Green Lantern is neither as tall as Kingda Ka, nor as sprawling as Nitro. The only real "newness" to the coaster is the stand up feature, which is, unfortunately, more uncomfortable than fun. Although a bit smoother than its predecessor Great American Scream Machine, Green Lantern still bangs you up and around pretty well. With the bicycle like seat digging into you, and harness holding you in place, you really can’t adjust yourself throughout the ride. You’re stuck in that uncomfortable position for the full two and a half minutes, while being tossed around through loops and drops.

Green Lantern queue

Green Lantern isn't worth waiting in line for an extended period for.

Similar to the Great American Scream Machine, I emerged with a bit of a headache, however, that could have been a result of waiting under the hot sun for over three hours. In addition, while waiting on the queue line, the ride broke down for over half an hour. During that time, no one seemed to be able to tell us anything about the ride, and no announcements were made. With most of the queue line uncovered, you’re waiting in some brutally pounding overhead sun, with no real way to get off the line to use the restroom or buy a drink.

Green Lantern/Kingda Ka comparison
Kingda Ka towers over Green Lantern - literally and metaphorically.

For a new coaster, Green Lantern definitely delivers some wow factors with the overall green ambience; the giant green lantern, the comic book strips on the queue line, and the full-size jet replica. Overall, although the stand-up element differentiates it from Six Flags Great Adventure's other coasters, in my opinion, it seemed more painful than fun. Add in the brutally long wait time and the uncovered queue line and it just doesn't seem worth it. Other rides at Six Flags Great Adventure definitely outshine this one, especially Nitro and El Toro, which are much more fun and not nearly as uncomfortable to ride. For the experience, it would be something to try if you've never had the chance to ride a stand-up coaster before, but it won't be the reason you come back to the park.

Share your thoughts

Have you experienced Green Lantern at Six Flags Great Adventure? Did it live up to your expectations? Let us know by adding your own review and rating.

You can see more images of the park's new rollercoaster in our Green Lantern gallery.

You can keep up to date with the latest confirmed and rumored opening dates for new attractions through Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch" section, and by signing up for our weekly newsletter.


There are 8 comments.

Definitely true about the wait time, i was there for 4 hrs a couple days after the opening. I liked the ride though, they did an awesome job with it. As a green lantern's super fan from childhood, I really enjoyed it, it almost felt like i was part of the story. You are awesome for writing such an accurate review, thanks for that

what an unbelievably straight-forward, honest, and informative review. i like how you delivered a history and background of the ride's origins; painted a colorful and realistic image of the ride's surroundings and details; and drew close attention to the positive nd negative aspects of experiencing this ride. i now know how to proceed...

I'm not sure why B&M seemed to arbitrarily decide that all of its stand-up roller coasters must pack as many coiled, twisted elements into their layouts as possible. I liken it to a child playing a Roller Coaster Tycoon game who, try as he might, can't seem to get the track to re-connect to the station. So naturally, he adds a twist and a corkscrew and an overbanked turn, all in vain. The end result is a layout so deviously twisted that it's nonsensical at best, and certainly doesn't do well to help with that "blood pooling in your legs" sensation that stand-up coasters bring.

I don't know that this ride really needed to be at Great Adventure. Stand-up roller coasters are - as far as I can see - no longer built, and are simply traveling from park to park at this point as they wait to become entirely obsolete. But to put one at a high capacity park despite plentiful evidence to their terrible throughput and lackluster experience seems foolish to me... And now, the three hour lines are the price that visitors have to pay. I'd say that a stand-up roller coaster is worth experiencing if the wait doesn't top 25 minutes, so I imagine that at least some of these folks get off feeling cheated. That's a shame.

Ride is bumpy as hell.

I agree with most of your review, especially the horribleness of Green Lantern's queue. I was there on a particularly hot day and the queue was long and absolutely murderous. It's also such a nasty little surprise that once you pass the station building there's another 30+ minutes of waiting in the sun unless you say screw it and use the Single Rider lane at that point. (I, however, am generally a single rider anyway... but for a ride with such awfully slow load times, there should really be a totally different queue, like Griffon over and BGW.)

I do think, though, that comfortableness on the ride depends quite a bit on your height. I'm moderately tall and I really had no problems with headbanging, though the Gs at the bottom of the helix before the second corkscrew did have me pretty convinced I was going to push right through the floor. I also happen to be a perfect height for the position of the bicycle seat to be at a really good spot, comfort-wise, though if I were an inch taller or shorter it would either have been digging into my crotch or too far away to be comfortable, so I am lucky in that respect. Granted, I'm also comparing the smoothness of this to the defunct GASM which indeed always left me with a headache and I just happened to escape that fate afterwards this time. I also at least found Green Lantern to be loads smoother and more controlled than Mantis over at Cedar Point, but like I said... I guess I have a height that's just conducive to riding B&M Stand-ups. Definitely not my favorite though. Thanks for the great review!

These stand up coasters stink. I got a headache from this one and every one around me was complaining about it to. Save you waiting in line for the parks good coasters like nitro and el toro and more.

I went on this ride, and believe me, it was fun. But it was too painful for my liking. It gave my friend cramps in both legs, and my back was hurting for days after. The most uncomfortable ride I have ever rode on.

Insanely uncomfortable, and my guy friends added that unlike me, who pulled her legs up to avoid g forces slamming my legs at every rise, they must choose between leg pain and crushing their happy parts on the bicycle seat. Just... No.

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