Swamp Thing #2 Review

Swamp Thing #2
Writer: Len Wein
Pencils: Kelley Jones
Colors: Michelle Madsen
Letters: Rob Leigh
Publisher: DC

Original co-creater of Swamp Thing, Len Wein, continues his triumphant return to the horror/superhero classic.  Wein delivers a story with a compelling character and eye catching visuals by Kelley Jones that will grab anyone interested in this genre.

I myself have never read a Swamp Thing comic, it’s one of the many that has been on my ever growing reading list that I’ve yet to get around to.  The one thing that this six issue mini-series has going for it is that it’s very new reader friendly.  The tone is incredibly even throughout and the well written inner monalogue of Swamp Thing does a great job of painting a picture as to who this character is.

The overriding theme I took away from this issue was contentment.  Both the protagonist and antagonist have suffered and lost a large chunk of their humanity.  The antagonist has unfortanately given in to his animalistic instincts and has taken his new found strength as a tool for revenge.  It is revealed in the issue that he has been wronged by others and he believes he’s in the right when acting on his vengeance.  While you may not agree with his actions, you completely understand why he’s doing so and question whether you would do the same in the given situation.  These to me are the best and most memorable villains, the ones who feel 100% justified in their actions.

Our protagonist of the book fortunately takes the opposite approach as he holds on to his humanity and uses his extraordinary transfermation to defeat those in the wrong.  As said before, the inner monologue help paint a picture of the psychology of this character.  A dialogue exchange between Swamp Thing and Lazlo Wormwood shows us that while our protagonist isn’t happy with his misfortune, he has however become content with it.

It’s easy to grieve and complain about your pain and suffering but it takes great strength to accept it and move forward.  This to me is one of the most compelling elements of the Swamp Thing character.

The artwork in this book is simply perfect.  Penciler Kelley Jones’ work somehow manages to illustrate fairly simple lines but at the same time convey intense emotion.  There are some great action scenes in this issue as well and Jones’ design of the title character shines in every panel.  While Michelle Madsen’s colors complement with great shadows and lighting when they are called for.  Giving this horror/superhero comic book a vibe and look similar to John Carpenter’s The Thing.

Overall Swamp Thing #2 is nothing short of a must pick up.  With being incredibly new reader friendly through well written inner monologues and dialogue, great character studying, as well as having visual eye candy, I have no problems with this book.  It makes me eager for next months issue and wanting to go back and read past Swamp Thing stories.

Score: 5 out of 5

Review by Eric Bradach

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