The Swamp Thing #4 Reviewer: Andy Flood
Written by: Ram V
Art: Mike Perkins
Colours: Mike Spicer
Letters: Aditya Bidikar
|Released 2/6/21||Published by DC Comics|
Grasping hands, plant cells and dark ambiguity fill the cover of ‘My Green Amaranthine Part 2’. It’s a wonderfully atmospheric piece of art which mirrors the tone of the comic within.
We are led further through The Green by guides both fair and shady as the sense of mystery and revelation deepens. There is a feeling of experiencing this strange journey of discovery alongside Levi and Jennifer as they come to understand more about this elemental realm and the peril within. With characters appearing which will be familiar to both long time Swamp Thing fans and fans of DC as a whole, this is an interesting an exciting chapter.
It’s a story on a cosmic scale and I am astounded at the ease with which Ram V guides us through it. Themes of collective consciousness, memory and the interconnectedness of living things are explored. The dialogue and narration are convincing and enthralling throughout, and Ram V deftly uses these as tools to inform and entertain us. It would be so easy to become lost in The Green along with the protagonists and yet we emerge thrilled and enlightened.
A big part of translating such epic concepts and events to the page falls to the artists, and once again, the team of Mike Perkins and Mike Spicer exceed expectations. Each page gives us art which manages to not only recall echoes of Swamp Thing past but also surprise us with visuals which are new and fresh. The line work is detailed and inventive while the colours are lush and immersive. There are so many details and subtle colour cues here that it really invites the reader to linger and enjoy the spectacle.
Further immersion is provided by Aditya Bidikar’s lettering, which not only uses cleverly differentiated bubbles but also brings us a brilliant way to represent a fading voice. His work on this series so far has really enhanced the story and our experience of it.
As this issue draws to a close, we have not only a teaser of things to come but are also left with a sense of having enjoyed something rather special. It’s sometimes easy to overlook the elements comprising a comic and just take it all in. And that’s great; but maybe, just maybe, stay a while… look a little closer… read between the lines… you’ll be happy you did.
The Swamp Thing #4 continues to impress and amaze. The creators are doing something incredible here and I hope people sit up and take notice. It’s a comic to pore over; to show your friends so you can talk about it afterward; a comic to treasure. Track it down, find a good place to read, and get ready for one memorable ride.
(Recommended by DC for readers 13+)
Reviewed by Andy Flood – 13/7/21