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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Swamp Thing Key Issues Part 2

Wading into Part 2 of this Swamp Thing key issues series. I wouldn't say the keys in here are all that exciting, but you never know.

Movie hype might make one of these hot at least for a little while. There are two key Swamp Thing comics worth snagging in Part 2, though, and one is surprisingly already getting up there in price.

Missed Part 1? Just click that blue link to transport back. Otherwise, hope you enjoy the next few.

1st Swamp Thing & Batman meeting

This here is a new find sorta. Did not know that Batman and Swamp Thing had first met in this issue and quite early in the Swamp Thing's comic career.

Well, if you're into 1st meeting between characters, this one might be a nice snag. Although comic fans have somewhat placed importance on 1st meetings, CGC, Overstreet and CBCS don't really place that much emphasis on them or bother to note most of them. Well, at least, most of them yet.

Anyways, pretty cool cover, though. December, 1973 is the cover date for Swamp Thing #7 from the 1st series.

1st appearance of M'Nagalah

Not quite sure how important this alien life form is in the DC Universe over-all or even in the Swamp Thing mythos. M'Nagalah is a shapeless alien and self-proclaimed creator of life in the Earth dimension as well as other dimensions.

Supposedly, he used his telepathic abilities to inspire select individuals on Earth, one such was Edgar Allen Poe and another famous writer Howard Phillips Lovecraft. M'Nagalah is known as the Cancer God or God of Cancer.

He can infect others with a toxin that mentally enslaves them to his whim. This infection produces a variety of physical symptoms including boils and lesions.

Once again, not entirely sure how much of an enemy he is to Swamp Thing, but his 1st appearance is in this issue. Overstreet nor CGC are noting it as of yet. Swamp Thing #8 has the cover date of February, 1974.

1st Swamp Thing cross-over outside of Swamp Thing

Looks like Batman and the Swamp Thing meet up and team again, but this time it's in the Brave and the Bold comic series. Swamp Thing finds himself in Gotham City, where he is put on display in a carnival of all places.

Batman confronts the owner and demands that the Swamp Thing is set free but denied. When some mayhem ensues due to giant roots sprouting all over the area, Swampy is blamed for this, and when the government try to capture Swamp Thing for examination, Batman frees Swamp Thing.

The two thus team up to try to find a way to kill all the roots and the rest is history. Brave and the Bold #122 has the cover date of October, 1975.

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1st appearance of Edward Holland
1st appearance of Ruth Monroe

Ruth Monroe is a pretty minor character. Not that many appearances of her in the Swamp Thing mythos.

Edward Holland only has two appearances in this series. Not sure if he shows up in any other Swamp Thing comics outside of this comic series.

Edward is the brother of Alec Holland, though, so thought I'd throw this one in here. Ruth Monroe and Edward would try to find a cure for Alec Holland, in which they did restore his humanity in this issue.

Of course, that did not last long. Swamp Thing #23 has the cover date of July, 1976.

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1st meeting Swamp Thing & Deadman

Despite that this story is no longer considered part of canon or continuity for both Deadman and Swamp Thing in the DC  Universe, this issue does have the 1st published meeting between Swamp Thing & Deadman. The Swamp Thing would meet the Challengers of the Unknown in the previous issue, but Swamp Thing's 1st appearance in the titled series is in issue #82 in a flashback.

The Challengers of the Unknown series is the 2nd time Swamp Thing crosses over after his self-titled 1st series. This key issue is definitely not that well-known and pretty over-looked.

Deadman and Swamp Thing would meet continually in other adventures as well, and both would be members of the Justice League Dark. Challengers of the Unknown #84 has the cover date of January, 1978.

1st issue to 2nd on-going series
1st appearance of Karen Clancy

The 1st Swamp Thing was cancelled with issue #24 in 1976. It would take a little while for the character to have his own titled series again.

Before getting his 2nd titled series, he had a short stint in Challengers of the Unknown before being shifted around sporadically to titles like Brave and the Bold and DC Comics Presents. He did not have that many appearances from 1976 to this 1st issue of Swamp Thing #1 volume 2.

This relaunch was the result of trying to capitalize on the Wes Craven Swamp Thing movie that came out in 1982. It loosely picked up after the events of Swamp Thing's appearance in Challengers of the Unknown.

Martin Pasko was the writer who would helm the relaunch of Swamp Thing in his 2nd series and Tom Yeates would pencil the first couple of issues. However, this volume 2 series is definitely more well-noted for a certain writer would revolutionize the character.

So, Swamp Thing in this series is the roving monster, a wanderer whom meets all sorts of people in different places. In this first issue, he meets Karen Clancy, who would be an early nemesis for the Swamp in an Anti-Christ type role.

In her early appearances, Clancy was a mute child with telepathic and telekinetic abilities and Swamp Thing became her protector of sorts. Later, she was revealed to be the herald of the Anti-Christ. Not entirely sure but I think that issue is in #9 of the titled series.

The Saga of the Swamp Thing #1 has the cover date of  May, 1982.

1st appearance of Liz Treymayne

In the volume 2 series, Liz Treymayne was an important supporting character for Swamp Thing. A journalist and a well known hostess of a TV tabloid news program called In-Depth, Liz Treymayne was an ally of Swamp Thing and Abby Cable or better known later as Abby Holland.

The character investigated the murders of Alec and Linda Holland and in much of the series she would help Swampy go up against the Sunderland Corporation in this series. When Alan Moore took over writing duties in the series, he did do away with most of the supporting cast including Liz Treymayne.

However, the character would be brought back in later issues of the series after Alan Moore. Saga of the Swamp Thing #3 has the cover date of July, 1982.

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1st appearance of General Sunderland

In the 2nd series, General Sunderland is the President and CEO of Sunderland Corporation. This corporation is seemingly the big bad in the Swamp Thing volume 2 series.

General Sunderland is also known as Avery Carlton Sunderland and he is the big bad as well. He discovers that Alec Holland had survived and instead been transformed into the Swamp Thing.

This villain would perform experiments on Swamp Thing and later discover that Swamp Thing was not Alec Holland but they were two separate entities (Alan Moore revamp). So, pretty important villain for Swamp Thing? Yep, you bet.

Saga of the Swamp Thing #6 and the 1st appearance General Avery Sunderland has the cover date of October, 1982.

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1st appearance of Dwight Wicker

Alright, let's talk about the D.D.I. or better known as the Defense Department Intelligence concerning the Swamp Thing mythos. So, you probably guessed that Dwight Wicker is the director for the agency and also in league with General Sunderland as well.

Yep, he's not a great guy. The D.D.I. helped fund the Bio-Restorative formula, giving resources to Alec and Linda Holland's work and research. Along with General Sunderland, the D.D.I. sought to capture the Swamp Thing.

Dwight Wicker and the D.D.I. are pretty much in pursuit of the Swamp Thing in this comic series. Saga of the Swamp Thing #17 has the cover date of October, 1983.

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1st Alan Moore on Swamp Thing

Here we have the issue that marks Alan Moore's first issue on the Swamp Thing. Editor Karen Berger gave Moore free reign over the title.

Thus, Alan Moore did a new origin for the character in the next issue after this one, and made quite a few changes. Swamp Thing was no longer a human turned monster, but truly a monster.

The monster somehow absorbed Alec Holland's consciousness while being exposed to his work. So, for fans of the Swamp Thing and Alan Moore, this is a key issue to definitely get. Saga of the Swamp Thing #20 was published January, 1984.

Surprisingly the 1st meeting of Batman and Swamp Thing in Swamp Thing #7 is getting up there in super high grade 9.8s concerning slabbed copies. Overstreet doesn't note it, but CGC already has.

In terms of the first appearance of General Sunderland and even though he does die quite early, the character is brought back in some form or another in later volumes. Also the Sunderland Corporation should be of note as this corporation has continually been a nemesis to Swamp Thing and his supporting characters.

Also, the no-brainer key in Part 2 is the 1st Alan Moore work on Swamp Thing in issue #20. It's still pretty cheap in super high grade CGC 9.8s for the time being, but I do think that issue will catch on sooner or later.

1 comment:

  1. I noticed Vol 1 #9 is missing but it is the most beautiful of all the swamp thing covers that I've seen anyway. Hunting for a 9.6-9.8 just to keep on display, even if nothing important happens in it.