Names in the news, June 2

Posted June 01, 2012, at 5:21 p.m.

As red-cloaked monks swung a censer to the accompaniment of bells and Hebrew prayers against the backdrop of a crucifix, Madonna shouted “Tel Aviv, are you ready?” and launched into “Girl Gone Wild.” The crowd of about 33,000 roared back at Ramat Gan stadium. Thursday night, the 53-year-old queen of pop started her 2012 MDNA tour with a two-hour show that combined deafening techno-beats, a dizzying video-projected mix of sexual, violent and religious images, and a plea for Middle East peace. The tour, which will play at least 65 cities around the world, has already sold $240 million in tickets, according to its promoter Live Nation Entertainment. That, along with sponsorship deals and other ancillary income, will probably earn Madonna about $500 million this year, the Huffington Post said. In terms of stagecraft, concert-goers got their money’s worth. The show was elaborately designed with continuous video projections and scene changes and tightly choreographed with a succession of acrobatics, wire-walking and sexual poses. With extensive use of audio playback, including whole songs when Madonna disappeared from stage for costume changes, it wasn’t easy to know when her live voice was being heard. … Green Lantern, one of DC Comics’ oldest and most enduring heroes, is serving as a beacon for the publisher again, this time as a proud, mighty and openly gay hero. The change is revealed in the second issue of “Earth 2″ out next week. Purists and fans note: This Green Lantern is not the emerald galactic space cop Hal Jordan. Instead, he’s a parallel-Earth Green Lantern. James Robinson, who writes the new series, said Alan Scott is the retooled version of the classic Lantern whose first appearance came in the pages of “All-American Comics” No. 16 in July 1940.

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