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Sunday, February 14, 2016

Swamp Thing Key Issues Part 6

Sleepers, over-looked, bargain bin buys...whatever you want to call them. If you're looking for bottom-of-the-rung cheap speculation buys, then Part 6 is chalk full of them.

Not to say that these won't ever be valuable or sought out, because who knows with this market and in the future. So this will be the last part to this Swamp Thing key issues series. Thank, God!

Click this Part 5 link if need be. If you're good to go, let's wrap this up and get crackin'!

1st appearance Parliament of Decay

Part of the Rotworld crossover event, Swamp Thing #17 finally sees the 1st appearance of the Parliament of Decay. Not that the Rot wouldn't have their own Parliament, so that shouldn't be any surprise.

The Parliament of Decay are part of the cycle of life and death. It was only Anton Arcane's black and twisted heart who brought malevolence to the Rot. Knowing the balance of things, the Parliament are the ones who send Swamp Thing and Animal Man after Anton Arcane to stop him, since the stronger he grows, the weaker they become.

Estimated North American comic shop sales of this issue is around 31,497. Swamp Thing #17 volume 5 has the cover date of April, 2013.

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1st appearance of Prime Earth Jason Woodrue

The character of Jason Woodrue has been around for quite a while and didn't originally first appear in the Swamp Thing comics. He has had multiple appearances under different names, and therefore, quite a few 1st appearances as different villains or characters.

However, he is deeply connected to Swamp Thing, or, at least, was retconned to be connected to the Green in the Swamp Thing comics. As mentioned before, he was also known as the Floronic Man, but in the New 52, his 1st appearance on Prime Earth is of himself and apparently in this issue.

Not quite sure just how much he shows up in this comic, so it could be a 1st brief appearance. Woodrue has received limited powers from the Green, and is a contender to replace Swamp Thing as its protector in this series.

Estimated North American sales to comic shops are around 32,293. Swamp Thing Annual #1 from the 5th series has the cover date of December, 2012.

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1st appearance of Capucine

A major supporting character for the 5th series, Capucine debuts in this issue but near the end. This may be a cameo or 1st brief appearance. Not too sure.

An immortal warrior from the 12 Century, Capucine seeks the help of Swamp Thing in this issue. While growing up on the on the French isle of Mont St. Michel, her home was constantly attacked by the English and Flemish.

Rule constantly changed hands, and the monks on that isle were tired of it and feared for their safety. They would come across an alchemist who could teach the monks how to imbue a person with great strength, speed and 10 centuries of life, but at a price.

The price was that he would be able to retrieve the souls of these warriors at the time of their deaths and do with whatever he pleases. Capucine was just one of the youths that the monks turned into a super warrior to defend them.

In due time, their legend grew and King Philip II and blackmailed the warriors to serve under him. They served the king and his son. However, when an uprising of peasants took the life of the son as King, Capucine and the warriors were free from their oath.

For years, her legend grew - A warrior with great strength and speed whose essence or power of immortality would be bestowed upon one if one could kill her. Therefore, she constantly had to protect herself from those who sought her powers.

She seeks the Swamp Thing's help to protect her not in life but in death, fearful that the alchemist would come to claim her soul. I think this character dies in Swamp Thing Annual #3 of the series.

Capucine was created by Charles Soule and artist Kano. North American sales to comic shop is estimated around 27,338, and Swamp Thing #20 volume 5 has the cover date of July, 2013.

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1st appearance of Seeder?
1st appearance of Brother Jonah
1st full appearance of Capucine?

Not quite sure if the1st appearance of Seeder is in this issue, but I do know that the Seeder is revealed to be Jason Woodrue in issue #24. As mentioned before, Jason Woodrue saved Alec Holland prior and made a deal to inherit some of the Green's power as a reward.

Now, he seeks to become the Avatar of the Green and usurp Swamp Thing. As for other characters, Brother Jonah was the Avatar of the Green during the 13th century in France.

He does have quite a bit of appearances in this 5th Swamp Thing comic series. He created the invocation of "Sanctuarium Folium Viride" (Sanctuary of the Green Leaf).

This sanctuary allowed those who believed in the Green to be placed under Brother Jonah's protection from the witch trials. He would later meet Capucine and extend this protection to her.

When Capucine meets Swamp Thing of this era, she does not realize Alec Holland is a different Avatar of the Green. This issue might hold the 1st full appearance of Capucine as she might be in the story longer than in issue #21.

Then again, issue #20 may be either a cameo or 1st brief appearance. Once again, not too sure as I don't have any of the issues and feel no need to pay for them on comixology to get the low down.

Estimated North American sales to comics shops are estimated around 25,186, and Swamp Thing #21 from the 5th series has the cover date of August, 2013.

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Origin of Prime Earth Anton Arcane

Oh, the question of which version of Anton Arcane will the Justice League Dark movie be using? Will it be from the 1st Swamp Thing series, or will it be the Prime Earth version since the Justice League Dark only exist on Prime Earth?

In all actuality, does it really matter? Well, maybe so?

Personally, I'd go after the original 1st appearance of the character, but, hey, if the market is intent to scramble after keys dealing with Prime Earth Anton Arcane, then so be it. I might as well feature them in case you have any of 'em, don't really want 'em, and can't wait to get rid of 'em if a peak should arise.

So Swamp Thing #23.1 tells the origin of Anton Arcane of Prime Earth, and November, 2013 is the cover date to the issue. Estimated North American sales to comic shops for this issue is around 25,831.

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1st appearance of Blight

Once again, John Constantine agrees to the help of others in order to rescue the members of the Justice League Dark who had been captured by The Crime Syndicate. One of those banded together is the Swamp Thing by Nightmare Nurse.

The crossover story event that sees the 1st appearance of Blight is in Forever Evil: Blight, which branches off from the Forever Evil crossover event. Blight is the manifestation of evil itself. Like we haven't heard of that before?

Not entirely sure but this issue or issue #25 may see Swamp Thing joining the team, but it's hard to pinpoint since the line up is a revolving door. However, after the Forever Evil crossover event, Swamp Thing does seem to be seen fighting along side the JLD a lot more and is considered part of the team.

Estimated North American sales to comic shops for this issue is around 45,401, and December, 2013 is the cover date for Justice League Dark #24.

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Origin of Jason Woodrue or Seeder

In issue #26, Seeder reveals his origin. While studying Environmental Science at Reed University, Woodrue stumbles upon the possibility that all plant-life has consciousness and these beings had a champion or Avatar.

Woodrue would further seek out the truth, eventually finding his way to Brazil and discovering the Parliament of Trees. He begged them to let him be their  avatar but received no response from them.

However, when the time arose, the Green contacted Woodrue and tasked him with a mission to save Alec Holland. Upon doing so or completing the task, the Green gave Woodrue limited powers, the ability to alter seeds.

Dissatisfied with the reward, Woodrue sought the help of the Cult of the Cold Flame. In exchange for evil tasks completed, Woodrue was rewarded with more power.

He hoped to gain the attention of the Green and prove himself worthy as an Avatar for them. Instead, he proved the opposite. February, 2014 is the cover date for Swamp Thing #26 from the 5th series, and the estimated sales to North American comic shops according to Diamond Distributors is around 20,247.

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1st ever appearance of Jason Woodrue
1st on-going Atom comic series
It's time to rewind a bit here. Okay, maybe rewind quite a bit.

Not only is it the 1st ever on-going comic series that headlines the character, this issue also has the 1st appearance of Jason Woodrue as the Plant Master. So, definitely related to ole Swampy.

Yep, before he became Floronic Man, he was Plant Master. Sounds like cool super villain names just isn't in the cards for ole Jason Woodrue.

So, not gonna say much more else about this Silver Age key, except that this sucker is already valuable. Finding high grades online will be a lot tougher, and I'm sure good deals for 'em will be just as scarce.

Ray Palmer as the Atom has already been featured on Arrow, The Flash, and Legends of Tomorrow. Just watched all four episodes of Legends of Tomorrow, and think it's okay. It has potential for sure.

I've added it on my shows to watch. July, 1962 is the cover date for Atom #1, and it also has the first appearance of a short-lived character called Maya as well.

1st appearance as Floronic Man

During the Bronze Age, Jason Woodrue gets a name change and it's not much better than his original super villain alias. Woodrue as the Floronic Man makes his debut in the pages of The Flash comics.

In this version he uses a formula to transform himself into a plant/human hybrid. In the Alan Moore version, he is able to contact the Green.

In the New 52 version, he is given limited powers of the Green as a reward of helping Alec Holland. He becomes Seeder.

In another version before, he is the one who created Poison Ivy, so despite the lame names the character has been burdened with, he is a villain that's been around in the DC Universe for sure. Although initially a villain for the Atom, he has become quite a recognizable foe of the Swamp Thing as well.

November, 1976 is the cover date for Flash #245. If I were to guess what version would be most likely used in a film, I'd have to go with the Seeder.

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Alright, that wraps this sucker up. Lots of Modern age sleepers here and had to end it with some earlier keys that had bite and are actually related to the Swamp Thing mythos to certain degree.

Do I recommend most or all of these in Part 6? No, not really. Maybe with the exception of Atom #1 and Flash #245.

I think people still misinterpret that just because a minor key is on one of these key issues series it must mean I'm recommending them. No, not at all.

Not every issue in a key series on this site means that I back it, especially as a comic investment. It might something that fans might wanna collect, because it tells of a change or might be interesting if a comic fan wants to read it.

Sometimes it might have to do with a change in character or continuity like with Anton Arcane in the New 52 being connected to the Rot. Sometimes, a 1st appearance goes on here because it might be connected to something I discussed already like the different Parliaments, which is why I figured I might as well put the 1st appearance of the Parliament of Decay.

A valuable comic doesn't always mean it's a key, though it's more likely to be one. However, a key doesn't always mean it's going to be valuable either.

With the whole Swamp Thing #49 & #50, those two comics aren't even sought out in the market currently for what they're actually keys for. They're sought out because they're mistakenly connected to the JLD in some very slight and thin way.

Nevermind #49 has the 1st published meeting of Constantine and Zatanna. Nope, the market only seeks that issue out because it's got a few members of the future JLD in it, minus the one important character of Madame Xanadu who would actually track down these characters and form the Justice League Dark in the actual comic series. 

Pretty much the same with issue #50. But whatever. Crazy is crazy and this market surely fits the bill. 

As stated earlier, my interest level in Swamp Thing stops at Alan Moore concerning possible comic investments, but that doesn't mean that fans might not be interested in the stuff that comes after or even care about the comic investing aspect of it. I do my best now to try to uncover some things about a character that has evolved throughout the years or that might not be that well-known.

Sometimes I go overboard and sometimes I go underboard. All that I've learned is that someone's gonna come a long and have a gripe either way, but my motto is: "As long as someone out there enjoys it."

So, like it or not, that concludes the Swamp Thing key comics series. Time to move onto something else.

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