Posted in Comic reviews, Comics, Comics news

Obituary for Swamp Thing

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Goodbye Swampy-By Hank Van Hawkins

 Noooooo. So Swampy gets cancelled in March?!! Thanks alot Convergence. Truth be told I am distraught!  By now you have also read this head line. Personally I have refused to believe it.  It has me holding back the current issues of Swampy out of both fear and excitement. So, I have been grappling with this decision for a little while now. Then I decided to write a review about the Justice League Dark where so many of favorite axed characters (Swampy included) are currently residing and working only to discover a few days after posting that article, that it too is getting cancelled ! What is going on ??  DC, are you trying to mirror Marvel’s Disney excesses now? Who knows how long I will be blaming this Convergence event for putting out to pasture some of my favorite titles. I also dislike the choice to cancel Aquaman and the Others, but I will be addressing that in my next article. For all the success that the DC TV shows are breeding, they have also been holding their own with the brevity of many of their current comic book titles. I have no idea why they are throwing out so many babies with the bath water. 
 
  Swamp Thing is by far my favorite title ever and with its most current run, it adds yet another stellar chapter to his history in the comic books as well as further establishing his place in the DC universe. I have never picked up a title or issue of swampy that I wasn’t thrilled and enthralled by. I have too many good things to say to be objective. In fact, that’s why I have never attempted to review it because I love it so much.
I read and heard some rumblings about Swampy being a part of the Convergence, but I have yet to hear the title under which he will now dwell. I’d be delighted if anyone could share this info with me. From the very beginning of the New 52 Swampy has been right on and has been a fantastic vehicle for a slew of awesome writers! I cannot say enough good things about the Rot World arc, because it was a difficult battle for Swampy and he had to call on a lot of friends to eventually get the dirty work done.  I find little fault in Swampy’s adventures, so I had no need to review something I already loved? Yet with the sudden developments I knew I had to do this review/obituary to indeed to not only confess my love for Swamp Thing as well as clearly express my doubts about this so called Convergence event. Which, at first glance appears to be nothing close to the success, mystery, and excitement of the Blackest Night event which accomplished a lot creatively and set the stage pretty solidly for The New 52 relaunch. 
 
 Now this is less of a review and more of an obituary. I also felt the need to share my disgust in a scathing criticism of the current state of affairs with DC. It appears to be somewhat chaotic and scrambling and for what reason? Why is DC compelled to reboot everything ? Personally I think this will work to get the smaller presses and their titles into the hands of readers and comic book lovers. Dark horse has always been  adept at doing so, thus their longevity.  Same with Boom and IDW, because they all have pretty strong rosters these days and I think they will all do even better this year than all the years previously due to all the confusion DC and Marvel have now started to seed on a weekly basis. With big promises and promotions that never really deliver on what they say they will, Over promising and under delivering is bad for any business.  It is a both a compelling and sad state for the big boys of the comic book world however we can never underestimate the power of the little guys that have now an opportunity to by pass up the big boys. Yet on the other hand, we might  have just flown past the current sweet spot comics has been in for a few years now. Alot of that success has been a byproduct of branching out and giving some of the lesser heroes their own titles. Doing so also helps to break in a lot of good writers who would otherwise never have a chance to break in with the big boys.  I also like it when the titles keep it simple. 
Swampy has always kept it simple and straightforward even when juggling different battles in different worlds, all the while sharing the pages with other DC characters. He has never gotten too busy. In fact  Swamp Thing has always been accessible and relate able in any one issue no matter where it happens to be in a particular arc. So it’s sad by all means yet at the same time it seems to be a fertile field this year where the smaller guys are set up to make leaps and bounds over the big boys.  Hopefully this will lead to a breath of fresh air in the comic world while giving birth to some new heroes and new titles.  And until then if you get a chance show Swampy some love by telling DC they are making a huge mistake by removing one of their most iconic, popular, and useful hero’s from their universe. 
 
 -Hank Van Hawkins 
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Author:

My name is Hank Van Hawkins and I am a writer, poet, songwriter and singer and around the DFW and greater North Texas area I can be seen playing my songs in the band The Hazardous Dukes. To me there is not alot out there that ( I find more pleasure in) is any better than playing and making music with my friends, other than playing games, reading books and comics, and sharing opinions on such with one other! That's the reason I have so much fun taking part in our podcast Songwriters on Baseball. Because once we get started talking all sorts of things and interests come to light amid our conversations among our many friends within many a creative field we have as special guests. With baseball being merely the tip of the iceberg or simply the snowflake that gives rise to an avalanche of conversation and opinion. Uncovering the creative within everything. I am a collector at heart as well. Having been raised this way by my father who is a original board gamer and collector of many things, baseball cards, board games and antique toys included. So early on in life I was implored to do the same as my love of all things baseball, gaming and collectibles took shape with board games, comics, and baseball cards of my own. As I have aged my tastes in collectibles have grown exponentially. I graduated high school with a major in Radio. My senior year was spent doing the morning show at Mesquite school sponsored radio station KEOM 88.1 FM. So I have always had an affinity for talking and sharing my opinions as it is. It is my passion not only being creative all the time but constantly taking creative things in that are created by others whether it be art, literature, Film, Television, poetry and the culinary arts as well. In fact I appreciate the fact anything in this world can be undertaken with a creative aim and it helps to spread its influence when it is not only genuine butuniquely creative and considerate to the human condition. So it makes sense that I enjoy sharing my latest fascinations and interests with interested listeners. I read quite a bit and I feel like every book has a absolute truth to share with the reader. I feel the same ties bind me to my love of music. That connection is also very apparent in the world of comic books and always has been. There is a strong connection between the creative and the enlightened. It is my duty to not only share my passions but my opinions in hope they can both become better rounded with time. Not to mention the hopes that a positive impact will be made on our listener's as they too seek to expand their creative knowledge about popular culture and the creative arts well worn place within it. Not to mention I get my competitive juices flowing very easily when we start to talk about Baseball which is my favorite sport of all time. Now I get a platform with which to share my opinions on the integrity and future of the game without hesitation. Basically the podcast affords me a luxury of sharing my tastes and opinions with our guests as well as anyone else willing to listen. We have something for everyone .

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