Watching the Watchmen

Watching the Watchmen (2008)

Watchmen is a fun series but I purchased this book for Dave Gibbons’ work on Swamp Thing.

In this comprehensive hardcover, Dave Gibbons discusses his path into comics, as well as his work with Swamp Thing co-creator Len Wein.

While working on various comic strips for books like 2000 AD, Gibbons was approached by Marvel UK and DC for prospective projects. Due to his busy schedule, Gibbons was unable to contribute to Marvel UK’s new Warriors magazine. Soon after, Gibbons signed with DC to work on their Star Trek series. The Star Trek gig never came to fruition but Gibbons began work as back-up artist on Flash and Green Lantern.

Gibbons was eventually offered lead on the Green Lantern book which caught Len Wein’s eye as a prospect to revive Swamp Thing, which had been steadily losing readership. Gibbons created the sample page below but he and Len Wein agreed that, “the page I produced would only have sunk the muck monster deeper in the mire.” I would have loved to see Gibbons take over the Swamp Thing series, but as he said, his lack of enthusiasm would not have helped the series to get back off the ground.


Historia de los Comics 33

Historia de los Comics 33 (1982)

The Spanish magazine provides a glimpse into the history of comics, including profiles of some of comics greatest artists. This issue highlights Swamp Thing and features a portion of Swamp Thing 2, The Man Who Wanted Forever. The reprinted story is translated and recolored.

Bernie Wrightson’s profile:

Below, I attempted to translate the featured Wrightson interview:
“In the horror stories that I draw, the characters perish more to real people than Kirby characters, or that of much of the publications of Marvel. Many of the Marvel magazines present superheros, the local means that the type that hits is super strong and, what is equally important, the one that receives the blow is also super strong, is able to endure it. It is as if two brick walls hit each other. What I want to say is that there is a lot of action and fights and dazzling lights and vigorous lines. I prefer the cause and the effect. I prefer that each action has an equal and opposite reaction, which means that if someone hits your head, your brain falls to the ground. and you die bleeding.

Action and violence are so difficult to define. If I take an objective look at my work, it does not seem too violent. I think there is a lot of climate. I think the violence in it is justifiable.

The industry system besieged around an asexual world. I do not think about putting a bit of shoehorn sex into a story. Probably what goes into it is subliminal and I do not realize it. That is very Freudian. I think that the industry, considering its position, would find it difficult to get sex and get it to work, and that it was in good taste. Of course, you can make a sex comic book just for the fun of it”
– Berni Wrightson, from an interview by Don McGregor from “MediaScene” 1974

I’ll need to confirm with the book in my collection, but I believe the interview was featured in MediaScene 16.

El Hombre Que Queria Inmortal
For more on Swamp Thing issue 2, visit here

“si… ¡QUIERO!”
Unfortunately the story ends abruptly. I’m not sure if the story continues in the next issue. I’ll need to do some digging

“Where the young giants met
The “prozine” announces a new generation of comics artists in the seventies” by Kim Thompson is one of a couple articles highlighting comics legends. 

I snapped photos of the artist profiles featured in the book.

Back cover:

Gateways 13

Gateways 13 (March 1989)

I came across this great role playing game magazine a little while back and was thrilled to find an insightful Swamp Thing article within.

Along with the Swampy related article, there are a number great RPG related articles and game scenarios, as well as awesome reader-submitted illustrations like the one below.

Forces of the Night: Dark Fantasy Returns to the DC Universe by Vincent Cocolini.

I’ve tried to provide large enough photos so that you can read the majority of the article as well. Cocolini provides a thorough recap of Swamp Thing’s history, as well as peripheral characters such as John Constantine, Black Orchid, Sandman, etc.

I can’t quite place the article’s illustration below, nor a credit citing an artist but I love it!

Although this article doesn’t provide any new info or insight into the characters, it is a strong examination of Swamp Thing and those who helped to evolve the character throughout his history.

The featured call-out on the right side of the page below references the DC Heroes Role-Playing Game from the same year (1989). The game features some fun supplemental info about Swamp Thing, as well as a Swamp Thing playing card.

this “no-holds-barred” interview with Chris Claremont sounds intense. I just wonder if it’s no-holds-barred for Claremont or fans?

Fusion 9

Fusion #9 (February 1987)

This awesome, little fanzine arrived in the mail from the UK last week and I’m excited to share it with you. The fanzine doesn’t have many pages but the one’s there are filled with great comic content. I purchased the book for the awesome Swamp Thing illustration on the cover.

Hugh Campbell is responsible for this cool, little, UK fanzine. Below is his editorial within the book.

Fan art is what I love most about fanzines. No matter how crude or refined they are, it’s awesome to see fans create art for their favorite characters.

Direct Currents 1 – The DC Scene Zine

Direct Currents – The DC Scene Zine #1 – 1981-1982

Now this is a fanzine that I would obsess over if published today; a DC focused fanzine. The UK book features some amazing fan art, articles, and even a full-page Swamp Thing/Batman illustration!

Direct Currents was published by Hassan Yusuf. I’m not sure how many issues of the fanzine were produced but am extremely grateful to have obtained the first.

Direct Currents is filled with fan articles, reviews, fan letters and more.

The full-page Swamp Thing illustration appears to be illustrated by Nik. As you can see, the name Ziggy along with the letters G-Q-U-J are also on the wall. Nik’s illustration looks like it was influenced by Bernie Wrightson’s Batman & Swamp Thing from series 1, #7

Below is the back cover of the fanzine. An awesome Joker illustration accompanies an ad for The Old Comic Shop.

Starburst 47 (UK)

Starburst 47 (1982)

British fantasy magazine, Starburst covered the production process of Wes Craven’s Swamp Thing. A hand full of those articles can be found on Articles page.


This issue features a two-page spread, with Alan Jones reviewing the film. Jones rips the Swamp Thing film apart. He was expecting greatness, and conducts the review in an intense manor. He’s not a fan of the film and I gave his review the stink eye a few times while reading it. I’ve included the review below. I don’t disagree with everything he says but more in the way he went about it.

This review was released in July of 1982. At this time, Pasko and Yeates were in charge of the Swamp Thing title, and issue 3 would have hit newsstands the same time as this issue of Starburst.



Along with the crummy Swamp Thing review, Starburst 47 also includes a feature on The Thing, in production.



Holland Files 2 is here!

Holland Files 2 is fresh from the printer and for the past 48 hours, I’ve been stuffing envelopes like a mad man. I can’t wait to get all of the books in the mail and in your hands! Holland Files is an international Swamp Thing fanzine; 72 pages, filled with articles, illustrations and fan features from around the world.
Here’s a peek into the chaos.