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Thursday, January 16, 2020

Reread: Saga of the Swamp Thing Book 1

The thing with reading a lot of comic books is that after a while you realize that none of them can hold a candle to Alan Moore's work, or at least, your memory of Alan Moore's work. Not even Neil Gaiman, who can do character development well but couldn't plot his way out of a paper bag.

Saga of the Swamp Thing was Alan Moore's breakthrough opus in the USA. It opens with a bang, but having recently read Miracleman, I realize that there's a parallel that wasn't obvious when I read the two separated by significant amounts of time. Both reveals are followed by the appropriate protagonists becoming extremely incensed to the point of murder. It's quite clear that Moore lifted the Swamp Thing's reveal directly from his work on Miracleman.

The villain, such he is, however, is much more sympathetic than the ones in Miracleman. The setup for the second book takes its time, however, though with the benefit of hindsight one can easily see the foreshadowing happening. The American Gothic series of Swamp Thing comics was very well reviewed, but looking back, I think it's not anywhere close to Alan Moore at his peak. Nevertheless, middle of the pack Alan Moore is still way better than say, J. Michael Straczyinski. Recommended.

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