Alfredo Alcala

Swamp Thing 84 (March 1989)

Veitch really puts Abby through the wringer this issue. Instead of supervillains, she gets to deal with the American healthcare system. Comatose ex-husband (and government operative) Matt is now ringing up ten thousand a day and the hospital expects Abby to pay up. It’s a distressing issue. Without Swamp Thing, there’s not a lot of […]

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Swamp Thing 83 (February 1989)

This issue of Swamp Thing continues the time traveling further into the past, with Swamp Thing meeting up with Enemy Ace. Except it’s not Alec’s story, nor is it Enemy Ace’s story… it’s Abby’s grandmother’s story. The issue belongs to Anton Arcane’s mother–she narrates it, she has the biggest story arc–and it’s downright disturbing. She’s […]

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Swamp Thing 82 (January 1989)

Veitch sends Swamp Thing back to Easy Company, which works out quite well. The pacing is key–Veitch introduces Sgt. Rock, a medic, a bad guy and then a surprise bad guy for the finish. In the meantime, Alec is inhabiting the recently deceased body of an ancestor (or just someone with the same name… it’s […]

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Swamp Thing 81 (Holiday 1988)

Veitch does a sequel to one of the first Swamp Thing issues–I think back in the Wrightson days–and he captures some of that series’s cynicism. Mind you, he’s doing it with a superhero guest star and part of a big crossover event. I almost wish he hadn’t done it because it’s so downbeat. But it’s […]

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Swamp Thing 80 (Winter 1988)

Poor Veitch. Swamp Thing is about to take part in another big DC crossover–they don’t announce it on the cover or in the text, but it’s Invasion!–and he’s got nothing. He basically sends Alec off into space again, or something like it. The finish, with Swamp Thing forced to escape Earth, looks exactly like the […]

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Swamp Thing 79 (December 1988)

There’s something immediately compelling about Veitch’s take on Superman and Lois Lane. His Lex Luthor, fat and mean-spirited, is a little less interesting (if competently done), but his Lois and Clark are positively realistic. But Veitch also loves playing with the Superman standards–Clark changing into his costume while falling off a building, putting back on […]

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Swamp Thing 78 (November 1988)

It’s another fill-in issue–Mandrake’s on pencils again (with Alcala inking); Stephen R. Bissette handles the writing chores. It’s also filler narratively, but very nice narrative filler. Bissette doesn’t have much for Abby to do, however. He sends her on another trip to the afterlife, which could be eventful, but instead she just hangs out with […]

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Swamp Thing 77 (October 1988)

Did someone forget to tell Jamie Delano Abby is from Eastern Europe? She’s got a line about being a nervous sixteen year-old and it doesn’t seem very appropriate, given her Iron Curtain upbringings. Actually, the guest crew of Delano and Tom Mandrake (Alcala’s on inks still) mimic Veitch so well I had no idea he […]

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Swamp Thing 64 (September 1987)

One could, if so inclined, sit and try to figure out who drew what–Alcala’s such a unifying inker on Swamp Thing, it’s hard to tell Bissette and Veitch apart. Yeates I could easily identify, just because of the startling photorealism. For his last issue, Moore avoids sentimentality. His plotting is gradual, relaxed. Much of the […]

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Swamp Thing 62 (July 1987)

Veitch fills in as writer for Swamp Thing’s adventure with Metron and all the New Gods stuff. He does fairly well, but it’s an easy issue. Most of it is from Metron’s perspective and writing an egotistical know-it-all probably isn’t too hard. But the issue is easy because it’s a fill-in. Veitch spends most of […]

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Swamp Thing 61 (June 1987)

Poor Adam Strange… Moore closes the issue making a joke about him. I get the reasoning–it’s a heavy issue–and it does give Strange a momentary spotlight, which he surely desires–but it’s odd. This issue is partially about high sci-fi ideas–a planet where the plant life became sentient instead of the animals and what Swamp Thing’s […]

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Swamp Thing 59 (April 1987)

Stephen R. Bissette comes back to Swamp Thing to script a fill-in. Well, maybe not a fill-in. I mean, I’m sure Moore was busy with something else, but the story itself isn’t disposable. It’s just an Abby issue when the series has become, for a while anyway, about Swamp Thing. The issue serves a couple […]

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Swamp Thing 58 (March 1987)

Moore does eventually make this issue more of the traditional team-up. He also gives Swamp Thing some significant more page time, as he tries to figure out what’s up with the Rann’s ecosystem. It’s actually a somewhat tense scene, as it’s unclear if Swamp Thing can help. The issue opens with a lot of political […]

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Swamp Thing 57 (February 1987)

While Moore is taking Swamp Thing on a trip through the post-Crisis DC Universe, he’s also reduced Swampy back to a supporting role. This issue is all about Adam Strange and the troubles on Rann. Swamp Thing’s just stopping over. And though it might be nice to see the titular character be the protagonist of […]

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Swamp Thing 56 (January 1987)

Moore overwrites Swamp Thing’s first person narration quite a bit. The more obvious ties to the color blue–he’s stuck on an all-blue planet–aren’t as bothersome as a reference to tenement housing. It’s not in the character. There’s nothing to suggest he’d have that thought. Otherwise, it’s fine. Wordy, but fine. There’s no other way for […]

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Swamp Thing 55 (December 1986)

The issue’s not in the pay-off. The pay-off is great, sure, but the issue is often disconnected from it. Moore’s writing Swamp Thing’s memorial–complete with guest spots from the Phantom Stranger and Constantine and, especially, a slightly mischievous and pervy Boston Brand. But it’s not a recap of the series to date, even though most […]

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Swamp Thing 54 (November 1986)

Reading this issue, I wonder if Moore knew how he was going to bring Liz and Dennis back. He exited them from the series right after he took over. He certainly foreshadowed it. Interestingly, after doing a few issues “for the fans”–a Batman guest appearance, lots of action–he’s hostile to the traditional comic book reader […]

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Swamp Thing 52 (September 1986)

Moore brings Swamp Thing fully into the regular DC Universe here, sporting not just Gotham’s finest but also a Lex Luthor cameo. It’s wordless and only one panel, but Veitch and Alcala’s Lex is definitive for the comics. He’s bald and clearly disturbed. Sadly, their Batman panel (closing the issue) isn’t good. Odd jaw on […]

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Swamp Thing 51 (August 1986)

From the first page, it’s clear Veitch and Alcala’s take on Swamp Thing is going to be a little different. Veitch is far less lyrical about Swampy’s appearance. He now looks like a mix of Wrightson and Bissette. This issue kicks off the “Abby in Gotham” arc and Moore moves really fast through her side […]

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Swamp Thing 49 (June 1986)

This issue, though the cover does nothing to reveal it, features guest appearances from lots of DC’s supernatural characters. Moore skips his cliffhanger regarding Abby’s arrest–some things are clearly best left until after the end of the universe–and instead shows Swampy and Constantine rallying the troops. For the most part, the issue is rather straightforward. […]

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Swamp Thing 45 (February 1986)

Woch and Alcala are good artists for this issue, which is mostly just a haunted house story. Moore follows the genre standards. He sets up the history of the curse, splits up his unsuspecting cast, gives it an ominous ending. It’s over half the issue before Swamp Thing shows up and, clearly, the story doesn’t […]

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Swamp Thing 41 (October 1985)

So in 1985, Moore did a frank story about racism. That feature alone would make this issue of Swamp Thing significant, but it’s far from the most stunning part of the comic. Hollywood has come to the swamp and they’re making a miniseries about plantations and slavery. The evil of the plantation reincarnates, down to […]

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