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Saturday, February 13, 2016

Swamp Thing Key Comics Part 5


This is Part 5 to this Swamp Thing key comics series. If you missed Part 4, just click the link and it will bring you back.




SWAMP THING #147 VOLUME 2
1st appearance of the Word

Ok, looks like Millar also created the Word. The Word is the first being that came into creation from the Voice (God).

He is one of the most powerful beings in the DC Universe. Even Phantom Stranger and the Spectre are afraid of this cat.

The Word ends up destroying the Parliament of Trees, Stone, Vapor, and Waves later in this comic series. Tefe Holland ends up stopping him.

Swamp Thing #147 from the 2nd series has the cover date of October, 1994.

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SWAMP THING #158 VOLUME 2
1st appearance of Parliament of Waves

Of the four basic elements in the Swamp Thing mythos, there is Earth, fire, air and water. Swamp Thing is part of the Green and belongs to the Earth element I think.

Those who belong to the Clear or Blue are of the water element, and like the Green has the Parliament of Trees, the Clear are also known as the Parliament of Waves. In issue #151 of the series, Swamp Thing meets a character named Anna.

Anna is a writer who does not know she is water Elemental. In trying to complete her book of short stories, Swamp Thing offers to help and is taken on a voyage through these alternate universes created from her stories. In this issue here, she finally meets the Parliament of Waves and discovers her true being.

So, this issue here has the 1st appearance of the Parliament of Waves and the story line is a weird one. Millar created the Parliament of the Waves, but not the concept of Water Elementals.

The concept of Water, Air, Fire, and Earth had been around for awhile. Not sure when those concepts first came into being in the DC Universe, but Firestorm #90 volume 2 in 1989 began the story of the Elemental Wars. 

Firestorm is, of course, part of the fire with Red Tornado as an air elemental. Millar also created the Parliament of Vapors which debuted in Swamp Thing #164 of the 2nd series and the Parliament of Stone.

Swamp Thing #158 has the cover date of September, 1995.

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SWAMP THING #1 VOLUME 3
1st issue to comic series

The third volume of the Swamp Thing comic series focuses on Tefe Holland as the main character. Her mother Abby Holland and Swamp Thing are supporting characters with occasional appearances of John Constantine in the mix.

The series only lasted 20 issues and was under the helm of writer Brian K. Vaughan and artist Roger Petersen. Brian K. Vaughan would start the series with Tefe Holland awakening from a 3 year coma and believing she is a Mary Conway.

It would later be revealed that she was mind wiped by Swamp Thing, Constantine and Abby in order to control her darker side. Tefe eventually rediscovers who she really is and the powers she inherited in this series. 

This is the only issue I'm gonna cover from the 3rd volume of the Swamp Thing. Not much goes on in terms of significant keys or 1st appearances. 

Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 25,063. May, 2000 is the cover date to Swamp Thing #1 volume 3.

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SWAMP THING #1 VOLUME 4
1st issue to comic series
1st Enrique Breccia Swamp Thing artwork


When it comes to later volumes of the Swamp Thing, it seems that a handful of fans like them or don't really care for them. This series really hasn't broken out into anything special just yet by the comic market at large.

The writers of the 4th series were Andy Diggle, Will Pfeifer and Joshua Dysart. Volume 4 ended with issue #29. Swamp Thing tries to live an uneventful life in the series while his daughter Tefe becomes powerless and mortal.

I've yet to find anything substantially spectacular in terms of key issues worth yapping about from volume 4 just yet, other than some Swamp Thing fans liking the series. However, Swamp Thing #1 of the 4th series is the 1st Swamp Thing artwork done by the famous Argentinian artist Enrique Breccia.

His father, Alberto Breccia, is known as one of the greatest Latino-American artists of all time. This isn't Enrique's 1st DC Comics work, however.

Issues #1 through #6 holds the story line of "Bad Seed", which happens to be collected in trade paperback. I've heard rumblings about it in the Swampdom.

A lot of very, very, very brief supporting characters are introduced in the series, but the main supporting cast is still Tefe Holland and Abby Holland.  Constantine, of course, shows up here and there as well.

Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 33,382, and May, 2004 is the cover date for Swamp Thing #1 volume 4.

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SWAMP THING #1 VOLUME 5
1st issue to comic series
1st appearance of Sethe
1st appearance of the Rot?
1st appearance of Prime Earth Alec Holland


When it comes to the Swamp Thing volume 5 series, this is obviously the New 52 or Prime Earth Alec Holland. Swamp Thing does have a cameo in Flashpoint #5, which sees the first appearance of Prime Earth.

I'm not sure whether this is his first full appearance but it just might be.  The new Swamp Thing series sees Professor Alec Holland resurrected in human form, but this time, he only has memories of when he was Swamp Thing previously.

Interesting twist there, and he's actually afraid of being transformed once again into the vegetative monstrosity. Looks like they swept aside Alan Moore's take on the Swamp Thing being a true monster and went with the original take on a man transformed into a monster in this comic volume.

Whatever, but the Green concept and Parliament of Trees are still prominent in volume five. Actually, the Green tries to persuade Holland to take his rightful place as the avatar and protector of the Green.

So Sethe is the omnipotent force of death and pestilence. Yep, he's the avatar or champion of the Rot!

He is the main starting baddie of the series until he's supposedly killed off in the 9th issue. So, I dunno if he's an important villain or whatnot, but he did try to destroy both Swampy and Animal Man.

However, like Alec Holland, Anton Arcane is also fully revived in this reboot instead of being some spirit in hell looking for ways to torture his niece like in the previous comic volumes. Also, Abigail Arcane would be reintroduced as well.

However, in this series, she does not start as the wife of Alec Holland. Scott Snyder helms the kick off of this series with pencils by Yanick Paquette.

Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 54,757, and Swamp Thing #1 volume 5 has the cover date of November, 2011.

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ANIMAL MAN #1 VOLUME 2
1st appearance of the Rot?
1st appearance of the Hunters Three
1st issue to comic series

The Rots appearance in this issue isn't named or called out. Not sure which issue actually names the Rot.

However, Animal Man and Swamp Thing are obviously connected. Not only does Swamp Thing have to deal with the avatar of the Rot known as Sethe, Animal Man is confronted by the Hunters Three in this issue.

Once avatars of the Red and even part of the Parliament of Limbs, the Hunters Three defected and became agents for the Rot. Since Swamp Thing #1 and Animal Man #1 of the New 52 have both the same cover date and on sale date, I'm not really sure what the 1st appearance of the Rot should be or really is.

Both #1 issues hit the stands September 7, 2011. However, it is explained in issue #2 of the Swamp Thing volume 5 that Sethe is a "lord of rot and decay".

Anyways, Animal Man #1 will be connected to Swamp Thing's fight against the Rot eventually, and the Hunters Three are prominent villains in the Animal Man comics of this series. Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 41,446, and Animal Man #1 volume 2 has the cover date of November, 2011.

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JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #1
1st Justice League Dark
1st issue to comic series


Although Swamp Thing is not in the original line up and actually doesn't appear physically in an actual story until issue #19, I suppose I'll feature this issue once again but briefly. He does become part of the Justice League Dark or an on-and-off again member.

I don't think he actually joins the team in issue #19, however. I'm not quite sure when he does but it might be in Justice League Dark #25 or Trinity of Sin: Phantom Stranger #14 of the 4th series.

Just my best two guesses there. As for Justice League Dark #1, I'm already tired of talking about this one, and it's definitely no longer a sleeper anymore. 

Estimated copies or sales of this one is around 62,856 to 74,971 copies. Justice League Dark #1 has the cover date of November, 2011.

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SWAMP THING #3 VOLUME 5
1st appearance of William Arcane
1st appearance of Prime Earth Abigail Arcane

A strange twist in the mythos of the Arcanes when it comes to this series. Apparently, Abigail Arcane makes her 1st Prime Earth appearance in this issue, and she is of a different sort.

This issue also sees the 1st appearance of William Arcane, Abigail's brother, and he is a but a child that has the power to end the world. Apparently, Abigail explains to Holland that her family is deeply connected to the Rot, especially her father Anton Arcane.

I'm not quite sure, but I think this is the issue that actually names the Rot as the Black as Abigail further explains her and her family's connection to this elemental force. Abigail also explains that she is different from the version that Alec remembers from when he was the Swamp Thing.

The mission is to save William. If he bonds with the Rot, William will become an unstoppable force of death and disease. Therefore in order for the world to have any chance, Alec must bond with the Green to become the Swamp Thing, the Green's most powerful protector.

I must admit, a pretty interesting spin on the Swamp Thing mythos. Prime Earth Anton Arcane makes a flashback cameo appearance in this issue as well, and his first full Prime Earth appearance just might be in issue #10 of the comic series.

Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 52,300. January, 2012 is the cover date for Swamp Thing #3 volume 5.

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ANIMAL MAN #3 VOLUME 2
1st appearance of the Parliament of Limbs

Like the Green has the Parliament of Trees, the Red has the Parliament of Limbs, the guiding collective force for characters like Animal Man who are connected to it. This collective body of Totems represent the interests of all animal life on Earth.

Maxine Baker is the chosen Avatar of the Red, and her father Animal Man is her protector. Maxine Baker's 1st appearance is in Animal Man #1 volume 1 published in September, 1988. The Hunters Three were once Totems of the Parliament of Limbs.

Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 44,266. Animal Man #3 volume 2 has the cover date of January, 2012 and the 1st appearance of the Parliament of Limbs.

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SWAMP THING #7 VOLUME 5
1st full appearance of Prime Earth Swamp Thing

And here it is, the supposed death of Alec Holland as he once again fulfills his destiny and becomes the Swamp Thing, the greatest Green knight of them all. This issue sees the 1st appearance of Prime Earth Swamp Thing.

He was shown in a cameo in Flashpoint #5, which also holds the 1st appearance of Prime Earth. I think his appearance was in a vision in that issue since this issue of Swamp Thing tells the story of his transformation.

Bring on the war between the Green and the Rot. Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 40,268. Swamp Thing #7 volume 5 has the cover date of May, 2012.

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ANIMAL MAN #12 VOLUME #12
Begins the Rotworld cross over

The Rotworld crossover event took place between the Animal Man and Swamp Thing titles, and this is when the duo team up to take on Anton Arcane and the Rot. In this story line, Animal Man and Swamp Thing enter the Rot and emerge from it a year into the future.

They find out that the Rot has taken over the Earth. So the two heroes must fight Arcane and the Rot and reverse the Rot's dominion over the planet.

Of course, we know that Arcane and the Rot are defeated, and both heroes are returned to present day. This crossover event ran through the issues of Animal Man #12 through #18 and Swamp Thing #12 through #18.

Tie-in issues include Swamp Thing Annual #1 and Frankenstein Agent of S.H.A.D.E #13 through #15. Estimated North American comic shop sales of Animal Man #12 is around 34,549, and Animal Man #12volume 2 has the cover date of October, 2012.

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Although I'm getting a headache with all this Air, Earth, Water, Fire elemental crap and Parliaments of this and that and who-de-do and who-de-da, I'm gonna stretch this Swamp Thing key comics or key issues series to just one more part. So, there will be a Part 6 unfortunately or fortunately.

I guess it depends on whether this series is doing anything for ya or if any of the Modern Age keys appeal to ya or not. To tell ya the truth, I lost interest as a whole right after Part 3.

However, the New 52 stuff has piqued a slight bit of my interest with the Arcanes being tied or deeply connected to the Rot. I wonder if that concept will play out on the big screen one of these days, because I think it's kinda cool deep down in the marrow of my geekiness.

So, one more part and a few more Swamp Thing key issues in Part 6. See ya there.


1 comment:

  1. Thanks for getting deeper into this modern madness. To be honest, I first liked the rot story lines which ran through the NEW52 Animal Man and Swamp Thing series. Great art for sure, but after 5, 6 issues I also got bored because this one was stretched out a bit too much, so I cancelled both series.

    Ace

    ReplyDelete