Cover Accuracy: Poor. Alec hasn’t even become The Swamp Thing yet!
After five pages of a boy who is allergic to chlorophyll story set-up where he lives in a bubble and is beset by a boy with a fork and tumors, we get back to Abigail Arcane. Now, she didn’t say she was disintegrating and that the disintegration was complete or anything. She just said she was going to watch Alec Holland die. The scene continues thusly:
Abigail: “Do something or you’re going to die.” [That’s a little bit different!]
Abigail: “I said do something now!
Alec: “Do what? I don’t understand—”
Abigail: “If you’re who you say you are…”
Abigail: “If you’re Alec Holland, the real one… prove it now. Or I’ll unload this in your chest on the count of three.” [This is a Shotgun.]
Of course she wasn’t just about to watch him die. It was sort of a threat to gain as much power as she could over a guy she wasn’t sure was the guy she thought he was. But the conversation would only ever be approached this way if you knew a cliffhanger was coming and you had to make an audience believe the story was headed somewhere it was never intending to head. Stupid comic books.
I guess Scott Snyder did this over in Batman as well. Blowing up the building Batman was in and then, next issue, having Batman describe how trip wires were more about fear and less about killing. You know, I really wouldn’t mind a comic book that just ended with a to be continued and didn’t feel it needed some surprise shocker. Especially when the surprise shocker ending never has anything to do with the reality of the story which begins the next issue.
Right after Abby counts to 3, Alec screams no, closes his eyes, and this happens:
Then he opens his eyes and this has happened:
So Abby believes Alec after that. Although now Alec has to wonder how he has the power to do this. They make a tentative peace and Abby says she needs Alec’s help to save that bubble boy in Texas.
This boy isn’t just allergic to chlorophyll. He can also control cancer. And instead of using it for good, he’s called to Sethe’s side to help destroy the world. Now, I understand choosing a guy who is allergic to chlorophyll. It’s symbolic. Or maybe it’s the only way a person can channel the powers of Sethe. But it seems that if your nemesis is a guy with the power to control plants, your champion shouldn’t be a guy whose biggest weakness is plants.
Here he is using his power to explode the bully kid’s tumors from inside.
Now, he doesn’t actually control cancer. And it seems really odd that he can manipulate this boy’s tumors. Alec asks when the reader returns to Abby and Alec, “This boy, he can control dead matter?” Cancer is anything but dead matter. The problem with cancer is that it’s so alive it’s out of control! But then Abby says he has a connection to the opposite force of The Green called The Rot. I can see them wanting to explain cancer as The Rot. But I’m just saying it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Cancer would just be an out of control form of The Red just like Kudzu is an out of control form of The Green.
It’s starting to sound a lot like The Stand.
The boy who is allergic to chlorophyll is Abby’s half-brother, William Arcane. And he’s to The Rot what Alec Holland is to The Green. Holland can bond with the Swamp Thing to become a powerful elemental. William can bond with Sethe or The Rot to become a powerful death elemental. And now it’s up to Alec and Abby to stop that from happening.
This comic just earned its Teen Plus rating. Ugh.