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"Future State: Swamp Thing #1" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by DC Comics

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Written by Ram V
Illustrated by Mike Perkins
Colored by June Chung
Lettered by Aditya Bidikar
2021, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on January 5th, 2021

Review:

Years ago, something destroyed humanity. Now Swamp Thing is a benevolent ruler of plant people, but he's always searching the planet for any last vestiges of mankind. Are they worth finding, though? They were the ones that caused the terrible war in the first place. This peaceful dystopian society is about to get shook up.

As with the other Future State titles, Swamp Thing pulls from bits and pieces of the existing mythos and builds something new and different. It's pretty exciting, as writer Ram V lays out this new status quo for the avatar of the Green. It strikes an interesting balance between a post-apocalyptic horror story and a compelling character-driven drama.

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Although the world has been overrun by plants and humanity's last hope for survival is flickering, there's a tranquility to this land. Artist Mike Perkins brings out a calmness in each of the characters. There's a playful energy to most of them, even when they're questioning Green's decisions. Where a chunk of Swamp Thing's existence has been torturous, here he looks at peace.

That doesn't mean there's not some action. If anything, that makes the scary moments all the more impactful as they disrupt this quiet landscape. This happens first with a fire at the edge of the city and then with the discovery of a dead body.

Colorist June Chung guides us from the colorful palette of the plant-drenched city to something darker, coinciding with the change in tone of the story. Since we're dealing mostly with plant people, something like fire takes on a more deadly vibe as it could destroy them all. Flames glow with a frightening light in this book.

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Future State: Swamp Thing #1 is interspersed with diagrams of sorts, showing how Green built a body to mirror that of a human's. It's clean and clinical yet fascinating. It harkens back to the classic “Anatomy Lesson” story too. Letterer Aditya Bidikar provides caption boxes for these in angular shapes. Just as this body was manufactured to be like that of a person, so to is the voice.

Future State: Swamp Thing is an exciting new spin for this decades-old character. It breathes new life into him with an entirely different status quo and all kinds of dangers awaiting around every turn. It's one thing to be the avatar of the Green and protecting all plant life, but it's quite another when those plants walk and talk. Swamp Thing has a family of sorts here and he has to protect them from the monsters (not to mention mankind) that may be lurking out in the world.

Grades:

Story: fourandahalfstars Cover
Buy from Amazon US.
Cover
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Art: fourandahalfstars
Overall: 4.5 Star Rating

About The Author
James Ferguson
Lord of the Funny Books
James has a 2nd grade reading level and, as a result, only reads books with pictures. Horror is his 5th favorite genre right after romantic comedy and just before silent films. No one knows why he's here, but he won't leave.
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