The wonderful Ilke Hincer, over at George-Perez.net sent me an email earlier this week to let me know that Swamp Thing makes an appearance on the cover of the 1985 San Diego Comic-Con Program. I immediately ordered the program upon hearing the news and am extremely excited to share it with you. After giving the program a thorough read, I was thrilled to see that Swamp Thing makes more than one appearance!
1985 San Diego Comic-Con Program
“Welcome to the Pleasure Zone”
I’d imagine the SD Comic-Con is far less pleasurable now than it was in 1985. The comics writers and artists that attended the ’85 conference was very impressive.
The program starts with a series of bios and blurbs for the attending artists and writers. Alan Moore was in attendance and Swamp Thing is briefly mentioned.
Take the DC Challenge!
DC uses the program to advertise their 12-issue maxi series, DC Challenge along with DC Spotlight. DC Spotlight, as mentioned in the ad, was a free/promo book handed out at the DC Comics booth at the convention. The book features some great illustrations, previews and involves some of DC’s greatest talents from that time. I found it difficult to track down a copy of DC Spotlight but finally found one at a decent price last year around this time.
The cover of this ’85 SDCC program features art celebrating the DC Challenge series. A black and white version of the program cover can be seen below. The DC Challenge series was a fun and elaborate concept by DC. It’s said that the series was conceived during a party at the ’83 San Diego Comic-Con. Each chapter was to be written by a different author and illustrated by a different artist. Collaboration between authors was prohibited and each book ended with a cliffhanger. I had to wait until issue #11 for a Swamp Thing sighting but sure enough, he made it. I’ll be sure to post DC Challenge #11 sometime soon.
The rest of the program is full of illustration by notable artists paying tribute to the convention. I was pleasantly surprised to see this Muppet Babies splash page by Scott Shaw. Kermit can be seen holding his favorite comic book, Swamp Thing! I’m going to mark this as the first appearance of DC’s Young Animals.
Speaking of a young Animal; He’s tearing up all of his comics books!
Other artists featured in the program include, Jack Kirby, Jack Davis, Will Eisner, Harvey Kurtzman and many more.
The 2-page ad below features the cover art for DC’s Spotlight which includes some of DC’s greatest characters including Swamp Thing.