Around these parts, we've discussed the utility of Green Lantern's oath before.
Specifically, does a Green Lantern have to say the exact wording? Will any set of words do? Is it a "password" of sorts, needed to unlock the lantern?
Or is it merely a timekeeper, a way to ensure that your ring is placed against the battery for the requisite 10 seconds (more or less) it takes to recite the mantra? Or, could you speed-recite your way through the thing if you were in kind of a super-hero hurry? Or, if you're a slow-talker, would your ring be fully charged by the time you reach "no evil"?
Well, as mentioned in that post I linked to above, there have been many different variations of the oath over the years, so it's clearly not a password.
And now we have conclusive proof that it's also not a timing issue, either!
Hal's ring is out of power, and he's getting his but kicked by a bug-monster!! So, there's no time for niceties!!
So for all those years, all those years of portentously intoning the oath--it's just a ritual. It's the Oan Pledge Of Allegiance!
Think of how many comics panels we could have saved over the years!! Just tap 'n' go, Hal, just tap 'n' go!!
From Flash #223 (1973)