Posts Tagged ‘Swamp Thing’

Posted Monday, June 13th, 2022 by Barry

Swamp Thing (1972) 2

Welcome to National Sewing Machine Day.

What tailors and seamstresses did by hand for centuries was brought into the pre-industrial age when Thomas Saint filed and received the first patent for the design of a sewing machine in 1790. While designed to sew leather on canvas, no actual machine has ever surfaced.

William Newton Wilson saw the English inventor’s designs in the London Patent Office. With a few deft drafts, he was able to produce a working model. It is on display at the London Science Museum.

Swamp Thing (1972) 2

John Greenough received the first American patent for the sewing machine in America, but it was Isaac Singer who developed what is more recognizably the modern sewing machine.

While taken for granted today, the sewing machine proved invaluable. Not only did it help with production of clothing thus dropping the price, it was also a major mover in the industrial revolution allowing sewing to be done in factories,

While a handful of visionaries are responsible for today’s machine laureate, our emcee is the work of two men. Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson created the Patchwork Man in Swamp Thing (1972) for issue two.

He only appeared in the final panel of the book, but was the thrust of the story for issue three.

Readers learned Gregori Arcane had been dismantled by a land mine. His mad scientist brother, Anton, gathered the pieces and sewed them back together. With science and sorcery, he was able to return life to Gregori.

A second Patchwork Man resides in the DCU. This one is Marine, Pvt. Elliot “Lucky” Taylor. He, too, was killed by a land mine, but was reconstructed by Doctor Mazursky and his team of surgeons and scientists in Project M. He became part of the experimental Army unit, the Creature Commandos.

His first appearance was in Weird War Tales (1971) issue 92 entitled The Creature Commandos.

While we know how the Patchwork Men came to be, we do not have the origins of National Sewing Machine Day.

Rather than worry about that, celebrate by sharing tips and tricks, post photos commemorating the day or hang out in your favorite sewing-related shop.

We might suggest you cobble together your own Patchwork Man suit for a little cosplay.

Just a suggestion.

Posted Sunday, October 25th, 2020 by Barry

Super Friends (1976) 28

Masquerade of Madness is a true Halloween story.

Super Friends (1976) 28

Super Friends (1976) 28

Published Oct. 25, 1979, E. Nelson Bridwell and Ramona Fradon craft some late Bronze Age cheesiness. Basically, werewolf Jimmy Olsen, Jayna and Zan end Felix Faust’s plans to defeat the Super Friends once and for all.

The Super Friends began as Saturday morning fodder for sugar-addled brains starved for a more kinetic version of their comic books. The original series premiered in 1973 after the Dynamic Duo tested on Scooby-Doo and Wonder Woman on the animated Brady Kids.

It was rechristened as The All-New Super Friends Hour from 1977-78. Further name changes included Challenge of the Super Friends from ’78 to ’79, The World’s Greatest Super Friends ’79 to ’80 with a return to simply Super Friends from 1980 to 1983.

Hanna-Barbera finished out its run with Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show from 1984 to 1985 and, finally, The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians, 1985-86.

While loosely based on the Justice League of America comic book, Super Friends did not translate into a comic book itself until 1975. Even that relied heavily on the JLA. Super Friends began as part of the Limited Collector’s Edition (C-41) series, reprinting JLA issues 36 and 61 with Bridwell penning a bridging tale to bind the stories together. Alex Toth provided pencils.

DC finally greenlit a Super Friends comic book series in 1976. The title ran till 1981. The comic complimented the cartoon rather than rely on JLA continuity.

Not sure if this is a trick or treat, but if you happen across it in a back-issue bin, enjoy some past history.

Posted Saturday, February 9th, 2019 by Barry

Young Monsters in Love

As a long-time horror fan and one who still appreciates the Universal fore-fathers, Young Monsters in Love promised a tantalizing twist to the 2018 Valentine’s Day.

Kelley Jones’ depiction of Swamp Thing planting a big, wet one on the Frankenstein monster’s bride while the cobbled creation looks on, set the mood.

This 80-page anthology is a mixed bag. Ten stories ranging from tale tellers James Robinson to Paul Dini with art by the aforementioned Mr. Jones, Guiseppe Camuncoli, Cam Smith, Stephanie Hans, Javier Fernandez, Mirko Colak, Nic Klein, Bryan Hitch, Andrew Currie, Razer Irving, John McCrea and Guillem March.

Young Monsters in Love

Young Monsters in Love

Jones is the perfect choice to render the opening Man-Bat story, worthy of a read. Skip the Frankenstein monster’s tale for Solomon Grundy’s as Superman passes along some words of wisdom to Superboy.

Too bad Raven’s – of Teen Titans – story isn’t more like Edgar Poe’s.

Dini does Deadman – gotta love alliteration – proud keeping Boston Brand from spinning in his grave.

Swamp Thing is represented by Russell and Frazer with a flowery tale. Pun intended.

The book is rounded out with some mediocre stories. Maybe the most memorable is the Mallah and Brain taboo romance.

The torrid torch the two carry deals with their dissimilar species, but same sex attraction.

Like the allure of any solicitation, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Don’t take my opinion, try it for yourself.

Posted Friday, October 12th, 2018 by Barry

Swamp Thing Halloween Horror

DC Comic’s latest tome of terror compliments the undressing trees, bite in the air and darkness that descends earlier.

The Swamp Thing Halloween Horror features 100 pages of retold Halloween stories culled from previous specials and stand-alone ongoing series. Mostly. The first story is an original from scribe Brian Azzarello and penciler Greg Capullo entitled “Hollow.” This Halloween there are more to fear than just snakes and alligators.

Dan Didio’s “The Pumpkin Sinister” is the first of three stories lifted from The DC Infinite Halloween Special (2007).  Blue Devil and Enchantress become honorary members of the Peanut’s gang in the homage to Linus’ obsession with the Great Pumpkin.

Swamp Thing Halloween Horror

Swamp Thing Halloween Horror

The second of the lifts from the 2007 special is “Taert Ro Kcirt.” Paul Dini turns more than the letters around with Zatana. A happy Halloween is spoiled for trick or treaters causing the mistress of magic to reverse roles.

“Strange Cargo” is the final retread from 2007. Poison Ivy spins a yarn of Superman v. Zombies.

“The Ballad of Jonathan Crane” is a reboot of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow with the Scarecrow playing himself – or, his alter ego. This one was pulled from the DC Halloween Special (2008).

Aquaman and Etrigan the Demon form an unlikely alliance in “Night Gods.” Together they tackle a Cthulhu clone and his army of darkness called forth from those claimed by the sea throughout the millennia. The story originally appeared in The Brave and the Bold (2007).

Batman (1940) 237 is an October favorite appearing in other specials. In the late 1960s and early 1970s Rutherford, VT, was a destination for comic book creators and fans during Halloween. Eventually the annual parade became peppered with floats and costumes representing both Marvel and DC’s stable of colorful heroes and villains. “Night of the Reaper” immortalizes some of the magic as a backdrop for murder and the Holocaust remembered.

Finally, Swamp Thing returns in this reprint from House of Secrets 92 featuring his muck-covered origin.

The special is an exclusive offered through Wal-Mart as part of the department store’s team up with DC.

Posted Sunday, April 1st, 2018 by Barry

Swamp Thing (1985) 88 (unpublished)




Over 30 years later Morning of the Magician remains unpublished.

Morning was to land Swamp Thing at Calvary during the crucifixion of Jesus Christ as the swan song for writer Rich Veitch on the title.

Leading to what has become one of the most controversial stories – both on and off page – in comicdom’s history, Swamp Thing was catapulted through time meeting with various characters in DC’s past era comic books. Included were Sgt. Rock, Enemy Ace and Bat Lash. In issue 87, Swamp Thing met King Arthur in Camelot where he was to make one final leap in time to find the Holy Grail.

The initial script had been approved and artist Michael Zulli had most of the artwork completed when DC’s President Jenette Kahn cancelled the issue. Many reasons abound, most centered on the backlash of Martin Scorsese’s recent Last Temptation of Christ, Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses and even Madonna’s much maligned Pepsi ad shilled to the tune of Like a Prayer.

While his audience was small – compared to flagship characters like Batman and Superman – rights had been sold for a Swamp Thing cartoon to air the following year as well as a licensed likeness toy line. Tim Burton’s first Batman movie was also on the horizon and Kahn wanted smooth sailing.

All speculation.

The fact is Veitch was so incensed he left the DC fold. According to interviews during and after the fall out, Veitch’s contract was about to end and he had planned to leave Swamp Thing after the story arc ended. But, he was to continue working for the company on other projects.

Prior to his popular Sandman, Neil Gaiman had been tapped to add a few stories, but in a show of solidarity he declined the title.

While the script has never been officially released, the artwork was on display at the Words and Pictures museum in Boston for a time.

A copy of the script and completed art can be viewed thanks to comics blog 20th Century Danny Boy.

Posted Tuesday, January 2nd, 2018 by Barry

DC Holiday Special 2017

DC Holiday Special 2017

With 2017 history it’s time to be thankful DC remembered fans with a stocking stuffer holiday special.

The tales make up a worthy Tannenbaum tome as Jeff Limire bookends the seasonal sandwich of stories with Bibbo championing Superman and his deeds throughout the year to a doubting Clark Kent with John Constantine tossing in his two pence worth.

The meat of the book belongs to Sgt. Rock, the Atomic Knights, Flash (both Barry and Wally), Green Arrow and Black Canary, Deathstroke, Swamp Thing and Wonder Woman. Denny O’Neil returns for a haunting Batman yarn that warms no hearts.

“The Silent Night of the Batman” is the encore. Reprinted from Batman 218, “The Silent Night…” was the 1960s decade closer for Caped Crusader. Easily the best story of the book and has oft been reprinted capturing hearts again in the Batman by Neal Adams Omnibus, Batman Illustrated by Neal Adams (Vol. 2), Batman: The Joker’s Revenge trade paperback, Christmas With the Super Heroes (1988), Limited Collector’s Edition C-43 and Showcase Presents Batman trade paperback (Vol. 5).

Not the best for a good year, but a good way to start a new one.

Posted Wednesday, December 20th, 2017 by Jeff

Deck the Swamp Thing

DC’s 2011 Holiday card. Artwork by Sean Galloway.

Deck the Swamp Thing

Posted Monday, May 1st, 2017 by Barry

Swamp Thing (1985) 115

Nancy Collins serves up the legend of Papa Noel for the French descendants of the original River Parishes of Louisiana as Christmas fair.

For those with deep roots Joyeux Noel” and “Frohliche Weihnacten.”

Swamp Thing (1985) 115

Swamp Thing (1985) 115