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"Legend of the Swamp Thing Halloween Spectacular #1" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by DC Comics

article-cover

Written by Ram V, Julian Lytle, Phillip Kennedy Johnson, James Tynion IV, and Vita Ayala
Illustrated by Mike Perkins, John Timms, Dominike “Domo” Stanton, Christian Ward, and Emma Rios
Colored by Andy Troy, Gabe Eltaeb, Jeremiah Skipper, Andy Troy, and Jordie Bellaire
Lettered by Aditya Bidikar, Clayton Cowles, Travis Lanham, Dave Sharpe, and Ariana Maher
2020, 52 Pages, $5.99
Comic released on October 6th, 2020

Review:

The first of two DC Halloween Specials this year is all about Swamp Thing and not just Alec Holland. The Green is something that's existed for ages, so we see how this has affected (and terrified) people and the world for generations.

This anthology is framed by a terrific story from writer Ram V, artist Mike Perkins, colorist Andy Troy, and letterer Aditya Bidikar. It gets right to the tragic nature of the character and how he's close to humanity, but never one with it. The moody atmosphere is perfect, casting foreboding shadows that add to the monstrous aspect of Swamp Thing while still showing the tortured soul lurking within.

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While the rest of the stories collected in the Legend of the Swamp Thing: Halloween Spectacular are all solid on their own, they come across more like standalone horror shorts that have a lackluster tie to the character and the DC Universe. This would be fine for a general anthology, but it wasn't quite what I expected from this one. Sure, a Swamp Thing shows up in every story, but there's no connection. You can replace him with a generic swamp monster and you won’t notice.

What did strike me about this book is how diverse and varied the stories are. We get scares from set all over the world, providing a number of great perspectives. That tragic quality is a general theme that runs through each tale. These are people that have had some horrible thing happen to them or have had their lives stolen from them. What they do next is what comes to define them.

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Although I love that DC is doubling down on the scares this Halloween, this Swamp Thing special falls a little short. The thing is, the stories are fine and the artwork is incredible. It's just that it's missing that tie to the DC Universe. What's great about stories like these is that you know they're set in the same world as an Amazon princess fighting for justice and a caped alien hero leaping buildings in a single bound, yet there are still these dark terrors lurking in the shadows.

Grades:

Story: threeandahalfstars Cover
Buy from Amazon US
Cover
Buy from Amazon US
Art: fourandahalfstars
Overall: 3.5 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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