Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Swamp Thing #26 Review

Written by: Charles Soule
Art by: Jesus Saiz
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: December 4, 2013

The Seed(er) is Planted

The Seeder's origin and current doings are told through the eyes of former Avatar, Alec Holland.  While the new Avatar didn't start as a monster, he is quickly becoming one in his quest to prove he is worthy of the title.  This may be Swamp Thing's title, but Animal Man is in the house (and forest) and steals the show.

I can't say enough about Charles Soule.  I know I sound like a fanboy, but the shoe definitely fits so I'll wear it loud and proud.  His Swamp Thing is such a personal, character driven book and this issue is that in spades.  We get to see the backstory of the current Avatar, Jason Woodrue, through the former Swamp Thing, Alec Holland's eyes.  This is great in so many ways.  

We get a new bit of mythology where all former Avatars share knowledge and experiences with the current one.  However, the former Avatars can just sit on the sidelines and watch what the current Swamp Thing is doing now.  This allows Alec Holland to narrate the issue, but more importantly, the reader can feel his helplessness and frustration.

Charles Soule gives us the Seeder's history and like many great villains, his road to ruin was paved with good intentions.  Jason Woodrue wants to do good.  He has lived his life to be the Avatar of the Green, but now he's achieved that he still believes he must prove his worth.  This leads him to an ill advised fight with Animal Man that doesn't end so well.  Buddy Baker shows that even though he's not the true Avatar of the Red, he shouldn't be messed with...and don't step on his daughter's Christmas present or it's on!

The art of Jesus Saiz complements the story perfectly.  Everything looks great and there are more than a handful of standout panels to boot.  It is so nice when a creative team meshes so well and Saiz and Soule are firing on all cylinders here.

Bits and Pieces:

Swamp Thing #26 is a great read.  Charles Soule gives us some added mythos and understanding into the Seeder's rise and (eventual?) fall.  The art of Jesus Saiz is great and compliments the story so well.  Like most of Soule's work, new readers can just jump right in so there is no excuse not to read this series.  Highly recommended.


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