Volthoom was born in the far future of Earth 15, and by the year 3079 his world was about to be destroyed. As a result of the impending doom surrounding his planet and his way of life, Volthoom and his mother (both being scientists) discovered the Emotional Electromagnetic Spectrum together and invented a device known as Travel Lantern, which was an "experimental device for infinite exploration". In order to find a way to save their planet, Volthoom used Travel Lantern hopping from universe to universe to universe, finally arriving in Earth 0 10 billion years in the past, and landed in the lab of Krona in the wake of the Maltusian's experiment to see the beginning of all existence. Due to them both being of a scientific mindset, Volthoom and the Maltusians worked together for some time, and in order to further their development, the Maltusians forsook their emotions casting them into a device of their own creation, The Great Heart. As a result of the influx of power and energy a ring was created, the very first Power Ring. Volthoom would claim this ring for himself becoming the 'First Lantern'. He worked with the Maltusians to bring about peace in the Universe for some time, and to further enhance his powers and directly connect him to the Emotional Electromagnetic Spectrum, the Maltusians implanted the Great Heart directly into his body.
Due to this direct connection to the Emotional Spectrum Volthoom began to become more powerful yet mentally unstable. In order to secure their inventions, the Maltusians destroyed Travel Lantern thus trapping Volthoom in Prime Earth. After killing thousands of Maltusians as a form of revenge, Volthoom was defeated by the seven "Proto-Green Lanterns", the Great Heart ripped from his chest and the first Power Ring taken away. Soon after, the Guardians imprisoned Volthoom in an unbreakable chamber (known as the Chamber of Shadows) and wrote him out of their history. A number of Maltusians (now named 'Guardians') remained behind to ensure that the First Lantern was kept imprisoned and became known as The Hidden Ones.
Wrath of The First Lantern
After the War of Light, the Guardians put Volthoom in lesser constraints as part of a plan to replace the Green Lantern Corps, whom they believed to have failed as an interstellar police force due to their emotions and free will. They used Volthoom's DNA to create a horde of infectious warriors. This horde, called the Third Army, almost assimilated all intelligent life in the galaxy, but was stopped by rogue members of the Green Lantern Corps.
During a fierce battle on Oa, the Guardians depended on more power from Volthoom but proved to be their undoing in which they inadvertently freed the First Lantern. Volthoom vengefully captured the Guardians and then began siphoning energy from multiple bearers of power rings, in the hopes of gaining enough energy to rewrite the entire universe. However, he faced the combined might of all the Lantern Corps of the Emotional Spectrum. Volthoom was weakened by the embodiment of death, Nekron, and was separated from his connection to the Emotional Spectrum by Hal Jordan, leaving him completely powerless before being killed by Nekron.
A couple of years later, due to his direct connection to the Emotional Spectrum, Volthoom could not ever permanently die, so he found himself back in the realm of the living.  He then manipulates Frank Laminski, a former pilot with dreams of becoming a Green Lantern but was rejected by a Green Power Ring, into finding and taking the Phantom Ring from Green Lanterns Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz. Volthoom incapacitates the Guardian, Rami, and soon leaves with Frank who had acquired Phantom Ring.
Volthoom wakes Rami up, addressing him as an old friend. Volthoom blames Rami for making him the being he is today, revealing that he wanted to return from where he came from but was instead used by the Guardians for their experiments in harnessing the Emotional Spectrum. The two begin to fight one another, with Volthoom claiming that Rami and the Guardians of the Universe lacked knowledge of where he and that without him, the Guardians wouldn't have been able to tap into the Emotional Spectrum and/or create the Green Lanterns. When the Green Lanterns are able to remove Phantom Ring from Frank Laminski, Rami arrives and reveals he was able to imprison Volthoom's spirit/essence within an orb. However, the truth is that Volthoom trapped Rami's spirit within the orb then proceeded to inhabit the latter's body. In Rami's body, Volthoom explains that he will train Simon and Jessica and that the Earth is in goods hands.
According to Rami's journals, Rami discovered it was Volthoom himself who would destroy his homeworld in Earth 15. When Rami told Volthoom this, Volthoom came to the conclusion that Rami wanted his ring. While Volthoom went on a killing spree, Rami destroyed Travel Lantern to prevent Volthoom from returning to his reality and destroying his homeworld. Rami then used the remains of Travel Lantern to forge the first green lantern rings.
- Emotional Spectrum Manipulation: Volthoom has complete control of the Emotional Spectrum, being able to tap into all of the colors simultaneously. This power was deemed too powerful hence his imprisonment. After his release he caused cracks in the fabric of reality.
- During an interview, Geoff Johns commented that The First Lantern will feature in a crossover event called "Wrath of The First Lantern" and commented on the character's role in the story:
- "I don't want to say he's a villain or a hero," Johns says of the First Lantern, who was introduced in DC Comics' recent Green Lantern Annual. "He's just a being who's targeting our main lanterns, our guys, to see if there's a way that maybe the universe could improve if they made different choices in their lives.
- "You'll see why he's called the First Lantern within the story," the writer adds, "but he's someone who's going to take a look at every one of our heroes and main characters and really tear their life apart and rip them open in a way we've never seen before on a very cosmic scale."
- "He's a very different ancient powerful character who has a very odd and disturbing point of view on the universe and on humanity and life, and where life can go wrong or go very good," Johns explains. "He's really not a guy who's motivated by revenge not completely or by power. He has it all he's a being who's just very, very inquisitive about life and the choices we make."
- It is unclear if the discrepancies in Volthoom's history are due to him being an unreliable narrator or the changes that happened to Prime Earth's history.
- The character´s name could be a reference to Vulthoom, an inhuman god of Old Mars, appearing and referenced in several stories by Clark Ashton Smith. Later, Lin Carter incorporated Vulthoom into H.P.Lovecraft´s Cthulhu Mythos.
- The name was also used in 1964 as the entity who granted Power Ring, an evil counterpart of Hal Jordan from another universe, his powers.
- When Volthoom was visiting Earth-3, a piece of his soul was stored in a green power ring, the same ring Jessica Cruz had.
- 35 Appearances of Volthoom (Earth 15)
- 14 Images featuring Volthoom (Earth 15)
- 5 Quotations by or about Volthoom (Earth 15)
- Character Gallery: Volthoom (Earth 15)
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