Plants vs. Zombies

Swamp Thing #2

Alec Holland finds himself face-to-face with the Swamp Thing. But wait, didn’t Alec Holland used to be the Swamp Thing? Well, this Swamp Thing is a 1940s-era Swamp Thing, who used to be a pilot named Cal Rodgers. He’d already been marked from birth as a potential Swamp Thing, and when he died in a plane crash, nature transformed him into the Protector of the Green. Now he wants Holland to return to his place as DC’s plant-based swamp monster. Holland doesn’t want any part of this, but he agrees to let the Swamp Thing explain why he’s needed — there’s something called Sethe — neither a creature of the Green, or plant life, nor of the Red, or animal life — it’s a monster of death and decay.

And Holland is actually genetically predisposed to being a perfect candidate for SwampThinghood. Holland nevertheless refuses to become a Swamp Thing again, and the ’40s Swamp Thing reveals that he’s already preparing to die and become part of the Parliament of Trees. But the Sethe is already gunning for Holland, with its ever-growing army of heads-turned-backwards zombies. Holland gets rescued by a mysterious motorcyclist — but did his life just go from bad to worse?

Verdict: Thumbs up. I enjoyed this issue a lot more than I did the first. The art by Yanick Paquette is, probably, even more gorgeous than the first. And it helps the story a lot to have an actual Swamp Thing in the story, even if it isn’t Alec Holland. My primary complaint here is that a lot of the story is extremely text-heavy — can’t be helped, because the Swamp Thing’s mythology is pretty complex, especially with the added twists Scott Snyder is plugging in here. Still, it’s a lot of words, and you gotta be really dedicated to reading a heck of a lot of words in only a small number of pages.

Severed #3

Jack Garron is on his own in Chicago, having missed his chance to meet his real father. He’s now hanging out and playing his violin for tips, while his friend Sam, a homeless girl who cross-dresses to avoid the kinds of creeps who would prey on homeless girls, serves as his manager and promoter. They hope to have enough money in a few weeks to book train passage to Mississippi to find Jack’s father. Unfortunately, they’re being stalked by a child-eating maniac masquerading as a phonograph salesman. The salesman invites them to his place for dinner after hearing Jack play, and despite Sam’s misgivings, they go along. They get a duck dinner, a few laughs at the salesman’s dirty jokes, and a demonstration of his seriously scary bear trap.

Verdict: Thumbs up. I gotta say, for a comic where nothing much happens other than dinner, this was a very tense and suspenseful story. The salesman is entirely nasty enough to take out Jack and Sam by himself, especially with his monster-sized bear trap, so his entire ruse with dinner is strictly about playing with his food. Thoroughly nerve-wracking.

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  1. Joe Bryant Said,

    October 10, 2011 @ 6:48 am

    That “decriminalise domestic violence” thing is absolutely chilling.

  2. scottslemmons Said,

    October 10, 2011 @ 8:06 am

    It’s nauseating that they’d feel something like that was an option they would rather deal with, instead of what a normal civilized society would do — namely, raise taxes. American tax-phobia is going to be the death of the country. :/