Posted by: Brian Hibbs on June 22, 2011
Don’t mean to overuse that headline (and, actually, it wasn’t really Arsenal-level bad), but I thought that this week’s Brightest Day Aftermath: The Search For Swamp Thing #1 was pretty inexcusably poor.
My practical knowledge of how Englishmen actually really and truly speak is mostly limited to watching BBC shows imported into America, and a few late-night phone conversations with Neil Gaiman, but I am fairly certain that no Englishman ever actually sounds anything like what Jonathan Vankin portrays here (which is weird, because his two Vertigo Pop series [Tokyo and Bangkok] seem fairly culturally sensitive)
It’s like…. mm, “Dick Van Dyke IS John Constantine!”, y’know?
That sucks, no doubt, but what I actually hated more was the portrayal of John Constantine that has him casually tossing off magic (foiling a robbery, knocking out Alfred via remote, entering the batmobile, entering The Green?!?!?! sheesh), and paying no price for any of it whatsoever. The thing about JC was that it was pretty unclear if he ever DID magic (at least in those original Swamp thing appearances), or if he was just good at tricking people, and that what we know he DID do, ALWAYS had a price, hopefully paid by someone else.
I might like to see that version of JC, especially in the waning days of the “old” DCU — Batman getting turned into those weird backwards head babies or whatever, Hawkman going mad, and leaping out of a window without his wings or some shit — but not this “a seedy Zatanna” version.
Also, like WHICH DCU is this taking place within? ‘cuz, see, *I* remember Swamp Thing terrorizing Batman and Gotham City in a pretty spectacular way when they took Abbey from him. Batman knows alllllll about Swamp thing, so to have JC do the remedial version for him, or Batman to call ST “the hero of Star City” is…. well it’s pretty fucking weird and awkward isn’t it?
(This is what I dread about the nuDCU that is coming — we’ll get a new Superman who, likely, was never married to Lois Lane, yet “Identity Crisis still happened”, which is like “Um, how?” That book had Superman worried about… Lois getting hurt.)
Even if you assume “Oh, it’s Dick, and not Bruce”, Swampy nearly destroying Gotham City HAD to have made the national nightly news, right?
Then there’s that last few lines of dialogue (uh, spoiler warning, I guess?): “If Alec [Holland] [Also] came BACK with his OWN consciousness, well, then, mate, we’d all be in a RIGHT mess, then, wouldn’t we?”
We would? Ah! Ah! FEAR the middle-aged failed-biologist who was dumb enough to believe the Government wasn’t trying to weaponize his discoveries! SCARY!
There’s absolutely nothing likeable about this comic book, and it not only fundamentally misunderstands john Constantine, but makes Batman look like a moron, as well. Nice trick!
This was pure CRAP, or as this comic might have put it: “Strewth, that was a right load of cobblers, oi, guv’nor?”
But, what did YOU think?