iFanboy Video Podcast

iFanboy #214 – Swamp Thing

Show Notes

The big return of Swamp Thing has happened, and the DC Universe will feel the effect. But what does it mean? Who is this guy? What’s the big Swamp Thing story?

We talk about the origins of Swamp Thing over the years, and get in depth with Alan Moore’s Saga of the Swamp Thing, the seminal run from the 80’s, looking over the rereleased hardcovers. We talk about Alec Holland and Abby Cable and the main mage himself, John Constantine, who is inextricably tied to the swamp elemental himself. Accompanied by Stephen Bissette, John Totelben, Rick Vietch, and others, it’s a timelessly beautiful comic book run.

We also explore Swamp Thing’s role in the world of superheroes in the past, and where he fits in with the DCU now. Having been relegated to Vertigo for a long time, will the character fit with the characters of today? Brightest Day #23 brought the bog man back, and Brightest Day #24 showed us what he can do, but we look at the precedents for this as well.

Comics history, like that of the Green, goes way back, and it just might all fit together. Please…. sit back and… enjoy… this episode.


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  1. Hah. Perfect timing. I just ordered first two hardcovers. Can’t wait to watch.

  2. Liked this episode, learned a lot about a character I didn’t really care about nor had the inclination to read and that’s what can be so terrific about these shows. Thought I would say that before this account gets locked as well. But I’ll be back, maybe under a different name, maybe not

  3. I’m embarassed to admit that I know very little about Swamp Thing or the history of the book.  I sorely need to watch this.

  4. I’m really interested in picking up these Alan Moore hardcovers but the reviews (on Amazon.com) of Book One’s packaging has always caused me to hesitate.  Many reviewers complain of a sticky inky cover that sticks to other books or has to be dried out. 

    Fellow iFanboy readers:  Any merit to those claims?  Anyone bought Book One and had to deal with that?  What did you do to fix it?  Thank you!

  5. @TexasZombie99  I’ve been buing the trade paperbacks instead of the hardcovers just trying to save a few bucks and i’ve had zero problems. they’re really well made and the spine seems thicker than most trades. i’d go with those if your having doubts about the hardcovers

  6. geoff johns is kinda into alan moore, huh? unfortunately i’m not into geoff johns

  7. Any comic creator or fan of exceptional writing should be kinda into Alan Moore.

  8. Great show guys. Anyone have any thought on any other Swamp Thing runs? I’d be interested enough in hearing something about the Mark Millar and Andy Diggle runs in particular.

  9. I watched the Swamp Thing TV show and Cartoon as a kid, does that count for anything?

  10. If anyone wants to sample the early pre-Alan Moore work check out Roots of the Swamp Thing (DC Comics Classics Library).  It has Swamp Thing’s first appearance from House of Secrets 92, and Swamp Thing 1 to 13.  Great horror tales (the Moore elemental version is later) from Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson.  The art makes it worth the visit.


  11. Nice episode, now i’m really interested in getting those hardcovers. When you guys started the video show would u ever have imagined you would do an episode on swamp thing lol?

  12. @wangman31888  It’s actually one we’ve talked about doing for a long time, but just now had the perfect time and opportunity.

  13. Cool episode.  I’ve read the Alan Moore run, and that run made me a Alan Moore fan.  I’ve read most of the Rick Vietch run, and it’s ok, but not near the same quality.  I’ve also read some of the Rachael Pollock run and generally, not worth noting.  The Wrightson/Wein run is fun, if only for the art and some of the horror aspects.  It’s more wedged in to superheroism, if I recall.  I need to revisit them.  But yeah, the Alan Moore run is unmatched for horror, macabre, supernatural, psychedelic, policial underpinnings, Fantastic Art, etc.   It’s too bad none of the TV series or movies could match it.

  14. Swamp Thing was referenced in “Stars my Destination”  in Robinson’s Starman.  Jack visited a world he created from the alien flora.

  15. Good show, but its weird seeing you guys sponsored by DC. That’s pretty cool, and so is seeing your ad in DC comics.

  16. Great timing for this.  I just got Vol 3 at my barnes and noble.  The first two books were pretty good and they seem to keep getting more and more trippy.  Can’t wait to read the third vol.

  17. Issue #56: My Blue Heaven, is one of my favorite single issues of all time.

  18. So when do we think DC will start bringing out a nice collection of Hellblazer comics?  I really want to start reading it but it seems like a couple of the trades are out of print and its hard as hell for me to figure out what the reading order is.  Hope they will do some nice hard backs like they are with Swamp Thing.  That would be a day 1 buy in my book.

  19. @CharlieBlix  I wouldn’t hold my breath. In the meantime, here is the order. Also, and I’ve said this a million times, you don’t need to read them all, and you don’t need to really read them in order. I didn’t, and I was fine. Hellblazer’s never really worked like that.

  20. @josh: If I may say….Incorrect!

    DC/Vertigo is now re-releasing Hellblazer and it’s going to have numbers on the spine of each trade. It’s on amazon right now and volume 2 should come out in January. 

  21. Book One has one of the greatest/important comics of all-time (#21) and Book Two has one of my favorite issues of all-time (Annual #2). The whole run is fantastic.

  22. By far my character in the DCU. the Wheeler, Brodrerick run after Moore’s was fantastic. I think i own most of those issues they showed thats so cool… that never happens for me… reintroducing back into DCU is great i just hope it doesnt raise the prices of the bronze age books. Anyway any fan of suspense books from Vertigo to EC should read these for sure….oh and thanks for not mentioning Man-Thing.

  23. Always been interested in reading Alan Moore’s run. You guys sold it to me.

  24. @thenextchampion: That’s great news. The poor availability of the trades has been putting me off for some time. I picked up the City of Demons trade this week and I really enjoyed it. Good to know where to go next.

    @Josh: Any chance of a Hellblazer video show? Judging from your comments on the audio show I’d imagine you’d put together a good one.

  25. @TheNextChampion  For some reason I thought he’d asked about hardcovers, like the Swamp Thing books, which I imagine are not forthcoming. Either way, I doubt it’ll be a complete run of all 270+ issues.

  26. @srh1son  Thanks for the heads-up, I’m definitely checking this out, especially for the Bernie Wrightson art!

  27. The house owned by the gun maker you referenced is a real place. Its the Winchester House, owned by the family that made Winchester rifles. Sarah Winchester believed the house was haunted and kept the house in constant state of construction to confuse any ghosts.

    Now, a tourist attraction:

  28. Thanks for this.  I don’t know jack shit about Swamp Thing and DID read all of Brightest Day.  Kinda sucks.  I wished they’d disclaimered the first issue “Won’t know jack shit all about the end of this book without passing knowledge of swampy characters.” But then again, they wouldn’t have gotten my money.  BASTARDS!!!!

  29. I think I would have enjoyed Brightest Day more had I seen this episode prior to reading the last few issues.  You guys did a good job explaining it all.  I actually want to re-read it now to see if it hits me a bit better.

  30. @josh: Well we’ll see if DC is committed to doing a full run of reprinted trades. Cause if they do the average ‘6 issues a collection’ like they normally do then Hellblazer would have…..

    46 trades.


  31. @gregbmarcus  That’s both fantastic and a little disappointing. Because that’s amazing that it’s real, but Alan Moore didn’t make it up.


  32. really cool show. Lots of fun things in there especially about the Blackest Night connection. I had no idea. I agree with Ron about the mismatched covers. Thats just straight up sloppy publication design. You make one decision for the series in the beginning and stick with it. 

  33. @TheNextChampion  All of the Jamie Delano Hellblazer trades had more than 6 issues worth of comic content. The new prining of the first trade, Original Sins, even added 2 issues of Swamp Thing to the original printings 9 issues of Hellblazer.

  34. Someone please stop Ron from butchering the word, “Ouvre”… please.

    For God’s sake, Josh has corrected him several times in the past and it doesn’t seem to stick.

    While many people would be happy to mock Ron for this, I will not… all I can say is: Find a word you can pronounce, Ron.

    That’s all… great vid on Swamp Thing. I’ve really enoyed that character for years, and it doesn’t get enough credit for the great art and writing. Good stuff.

  35. John Constantine is Awesome No Matter Where He is

  36. I am THE Swamp Thing guy. I very much resent the fact that you implied that there was more than one. I demand and apology!

  37. @ttobin77  If you can’t get used to Ron’s charming mispronunciations then you’re better off just not watching. Less stress in your life.

  38. @ttobin77  Just you wait. When you’ve been watching/listening to iFanboy for as long as I have, you’ll start using Ronisms in real life.

  39. After reading the Swamp Thing HCs (including Roots) I want to read Hellblazer.
    Thanks for the great episode!

  40. ‘Bollocks’ is a strong swear in Britain.

    DC are pushing the boundaries.


  41. @Ron: I just got the Swamp Thing HCs and all my covers are gloss for volumes 1 through 4. Maybe yours was an earlier printing?

  42. Good show, thought you might have mentioned Swampy’s decent into hell which was really groundbreaking and disturbing for comics at the time, his constant battles with Anton Arcane as he became more and more demonic were classic Moore too.

  43. I have that first printing of the first hardcover and I like it, no problems at all. All the rest though are glossy. Having every issue of Swamp Thing in one form or another, I’m very excited about his return, and I’ve just started getting Hellblazer Trades. Glad to see they are reprinting them so I can fill in some gaps. Some of the out of print ones go for some crazy money. 

  44. I’m a Swamp Thing guy!

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