Saga of the Swamp Thing: Book Four
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Saga of the Swamp Thing: Book Four (Swamp Thing Vol. II #4)

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4.36 of 5 stars 4.36  ·  rating details  ·  2,665 ratings  ·  68 reviews
This fourth volume in the saga of the Swamp Thing finds the man-monster interacting with Deadman, the Phantom Stranger, the Spectre, and the Demon as he continues on his journey of self-discovery. Traveling through the horrors of a haunted house, the improbabilities of the afterlife, the depths of hell and the heights of heaven, the Swamp Thing continues his evolution from...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Vertigo (first published July 1986)
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Sesana
Mostly outstanding, with what may be some of the best issues yet. The overarching story that was begun in the last collection is (mostly) resolved here. It does sort of tie into Crisis on Infinite Earths, but in a very roundabout way. (view spoiler) Instead, Swamp Thing, Constantine, and a host of DC's magically oriented chara...more
Patrick
This started out great like the others ones but I gotta say I got nervous when it entered "Crisis of Multiple Crossovers" territory... however it's the mark of a great comic book writer to handle obnoxious marketing schemes with charm (re: Morrison in Animal Man) and Moore goes even further by adding his own impressive potions to the big party. I'm also not too too much of a fan of cataclysmic happenings (easy heightened suspense, but where's the story going to go afterwards?) and my interest an...more
Robert Wright
Back before Alan Moore took himself way too seriously, he did this thing called writing comic books. In a field that generally didn't set the bar for that too high, he went so far beyond that that he ended up setting an entirely new standard for what to expect out of a comic book.

Perhaps this is a touch of hyperbole. Moore certainly didn't single-handedly transform comics, despite what he may think. Still, his work in the 80s was part of a great time in comics that seriously changed the industry...more
Michael
Moore, Bissette and Totleben continue to broaden the epic scope of the Swamp Thing title by incorporating the DC Crisis, bringing the apocalypse to a head. While Moore is at the height of his powers with such grand sweeping plots, Swamp Thing begins to be hindered by the rest of the DC Universe's concerns. I'd much prefer a straight Swamp Thing graphic novel, where Moore is given free reign with all of his characters.

43. This issue includes a great way to make Swamp Thing himself a mind-altering...more
Alejandro
This 4th hardcover collected of the amazing run by Alan Moore on Swamp Thing is indeed outstanding. Not only for the obviously famous stories like "The Parliament of the Trees" or "The End" but also by remarking self-contained stories absolutely great like "Windfall" that proves that Swamp Thing under the handwriting of Moore is a character so great that even a fragment of his can make a wonderful story that it can be as scary as lovely at the same time. "Ghost Dance" is also other awesome ghost...more
Matt
I just can't get enough of Alan Moore. I've never read anything of his that hasn't changed my world. From Hell is still probably my favorite, but Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and now Swamp Thing... the man is flawless.

I'm pretty sure this is my first five-star book in a long while, and I'm glad I haven't given anything else five stars because of how it would cheapen the ranking of this books. Looking over the last few volumes, you'll see that I gave it 3s and 4s, and that's largely because Alan Mo...more
Orrin Grey
Everyone's got their favorite Alan Moore comic, and I love Watchmen as much as the next guy, but for me his very best work might be his acclaimed run on Swamp Thing, which is finally being re-released in classy hardcover formats. And so I am, of course, picking them all up.

I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that these stories changed comics, any more than I think it's an exaggeration to say that they're some of the best horror writing that's ever been done. Top notch stuff.
Dave Glorioso

I thought the story (Ghost Dance) about the house containing the dead from the gun company was excellent.

Boogeyman is well done and very creepy.
All of the bad television shows about killers could learn from the mood set by Moore.

I liked the idea of the apocalypse and how Constantine and Swamp Thing interact with others from past stories and the DC world.
Swampy comes to full strength against the Brugeria but it is his hobbit like sensitivity that unfolds in the final story.
Very cool the way the o...more
Alex
There's some really great stuff in this collection, with the best probably being the haunted house story. The lead up to the apocalypse is great, but the apocalypse itself if a bit of a letdown. I wasn't expecting a repeat of the central conceit of "Under the Pyramids" by Lovecraft/Houdini.
Mario
This review originally appeared on my blog, Shared Universe Reviews.

This volume collects issues 43 to 50 which conclude the American Gothic storyline that began in book three. I have to admit the last third of American Gothic is a triumphant finish to the longer Swamp Thing story arc by Moore. I was caught by surprise. The beginning of American Gothic is so difficult to read, not because it’s a challenging comic but simply because it’s not good, so when the momentum builds seemingly out of now...more
Felix
Hm, so this is what the 'American Gothic' storyline has been leading up to. I liked the Brujeria parts with Swamp Thing and Constantine battling alongside against an ancient group of evil arch-sorcerers. It has a distinct Constantine-like feeling. Also the Swamp Thing's encounter with the parliament of trees was great, I liked how he learns more and more about his powers and sheds the typical superhero background of "a human gets caught in a scientific catastrophe and acquires special powers". L...more
D.M.
In spite of the back-jacket hyperbole, these are not 'the stories that changed American comics forever.' Those had long since passed by the time these issues came out, so is even further removed from the publication of this collection of those issues.
After the skip-hop-and-jump journeys of the previous volume, we're brought abruptly back to Louisiana herein to witness a story that has little to do with the swamp creature at all. In reality, this sets a pattern for the majority of the book: thoug...more
Mel
After throughly enjoying book 3 in this series I felt a little disappointed by 4. There were some great moments, when they finally got to the coven who were trying to bring about the end of the world, the betrayal, but the earlier part of the collection just felt a little disjointed and slow. It felt like a little bit like the writers were too contrained by Big Crossover Event happening and not able to get on with things at their own pace. I must admit I'm currently finding Constantine to be a b...more
Greg
More great stuff from Alan Moore and company. This volume builds to a huge, universe-spanning climax, with lots of guest stars (always the odd, unexpected ones with Moore, who could've dragged Superman and Batman into every story but always did something much more interesting).

One interesting note is that this collection includes a short crossover with DC's "Crisis on Infinite Earths," which (along with Marvel's Secret Wars) was the beginning of the now-idiotic cross-over event where comics com...more
John Kirk
There are some very good aspects to this, e.g. introducing the Parliament of Trees. It also follows up on Alan Moore's first storyline by addressing the theme of balance. Some of it feels a bit odd compared to the current comics (in 2013) where the Rot is a separate force to the Green, but I can't blame Moore for that.

There are also some bad aspects to this, mainly where it gets caught up in "Crisis on Infinite Earths". It makes sense that a huge event like that will have an impact on everyone (...more
Matt Glaviano
This was the last of my available Swamp Thing supply.

This volume offers completion to the epic story arc that begins to gain momentum in Swamp Thing Vol. 3: The Curse. I was really captured by that momentum – I read this one feverishly.
I really like it when Cain and Abel show up in DC Comics – they’re such a memorable part of this series and Sandman.

Overall, a very satisfying collection for this series. It turns out I really enjoyed reading Swamp Thing. The stories – both issues to issue and...more
David "proud member of Branwen's adventuring party"
Mustering all her faith and courage she turned, resolving to look the death behind her squarely in the face...but it didn't seem to have one." Whoa...those Invunche are the freakiest things I've ever seen...well, ANYWHERE, really!

This edition was a little more hot-and-cold for me...the opening story involving a hippie getting high off Swamp Thing just fell flat, and the two-parter "Ghost Dance" was a little too similar to the Actors-in-the-Bayou story from the last edition. But when this book is...more
Keely
Here Moore laid down a marker in the history of comics, ominous and unlikely as Archduke Ferdinand's tomb. Reading through the new wave of British authors who helped to reconceptialize the genre for us poor Americans, one understands more and more why it had to be this man. There is a flair amongst them all for a certain madness and depth of psychology, but Moore was the only one who didn't think it made him special. Our curiosity is always piqued by the mysterious stranger, and Moore will alway...more
Matthew
As a child and teenager, I was a "Marvel Zombie" and sadly remained unaware of some of the strange and wonderful pleasures of the DCU. When I read Sandman for the first time, I was still getting to know the DC Universe, I saw Gaiman was having a ball on the playground of myth, classic lit, religion and the general collective consciousness of us as a society. Years later, after having become considerably more intimate with the DCU, I reread it and was amazed at how much richer an experience it wa...more
Mark
Contains what many hard core Swampy fans rate as the single best Swamp Thing issue written by Alan Moore. "Ghost Dance", about a weirdly constructed and never ending house populated by ghosts, whose deaths was inflicted by the guns made by the family who owned the house.

Clever, scary, modern, beautifully written and as innovative an idea as had ever been consigned to a series of comic panels. Moore really got into his stride between 43 -50, the climax of "American Gothic" and the introduction o...more
Poonam
A blend of philosophical and paranormal. A fearsome doom has been released with the sole charge of waking an evil beyond comprehension, and Swamp Thing, John Constantine, Deadman, The Phantom Stranger, Etrigan the Demon, The Spectre and other masters of the occult unite against the dark forces that threaten to eradicate Heaven's light.

Constantine is a jerk as before, hoodwinks people into helping him - Dayton works like Mahabharat's Sanjay - narrative the events by connecting to participant's m...more
Joseph
I think it suffers a little from the attempt to shoehorn the plot into the Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline, but fortunately, Moore has given Swamp Thing a more personal battle to fight that merely mirrors the crossover event.

Still, Swamp Thing's big revelation -- that good and evil exist in a symbiotic, rather than antagonistic relationship -- seems a little obvious, like something Constantine should already have known.

I did like the Parliament of Trees (and can't help but wonder how much it...more
Dan
Aug 16, 2007 Dan rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Alan Moore fans
Ok, let me try to recount this: A psychoactive yam falls off of swamp thing and is picked up by a hippie who discovers it gives you good trips if you are good and bad trips if you are bad. Then swamp thing fights ghosts in a haunted house. Then swamp thing and John Constantine handle the crisis (an event in DC comics in the 1980s) and fight some Chilean male witches who wear waist coats made of Christians skins. Then they prevent some Cthulu-like evil satan darkness from destroying heaven.

This b...more
Mr. Avett
This is one messed up Swamp Thing story line. I mean, the end of everything and the birth of some evil power that has been around since before evil was invented? And a murderous death cult in the caves of some South American country? And rhyming devils? And, well, it was all almost too much. The death cult gets a lot of build up and hype, but then disappear quicker than you can say "cave in!" and the characters brought in to fight the ominous original evilness are kinda lame (I've read my fair s...more
Robb Bridson
I didn't care as much for this volume as the others, probably because the Infinite Crisis crossover didn't appeal to me much. The first two stories in the volume are decent stand-alone horror stories, but from then on it goes into a big story arc to connect it with the rest of the DC universe.
Jason
This is my favorite comic series of all time. Alan Moore took one of the goofiest characters in all of comics and made one of the most beautiful stories ever written in the medium. I'm copying and pasting this into into the review for all of the volumes by Alan Moore, as each book is fantastic.

Swamp Thing brings together elements of romance, horror, mysticism, and science fiction into a truly compelling and unique tale of a creature that can control organic matter. Sometimes sweet and sometimes...more
Kirsten
Alan Moore's tenure on the Swamp Thing title is considered to be truly groundbreaking. There's massive opportunity for over-the-top farce in Swamp Thing, but Moore takes the character seriously and spins complex tales of love, humanity, evil, and ambiguity. The series is also the birthplace of Hellblazer's John Constantine, and the contrast between Constantine's smart-mouthed, "victory by any means necessary" attitude and Swamp Thing's slow-talking, moral, and fiercely loyal personality is fanta...more
Hamish
Another good one. Lacks the annoying heavy-handedness of the previous volume and packs in more than a few legitimately creepy moments. The climax is a bit much, but I'll let it slide.
Kevin
I've enjoyed Moore's stint writing for Swamp Thing, but I enjoyed his approach more when it was more episodic. The seven issues collected here (and the seven issues before, more or less) have been building up to a Big Damn Apocalyptic Climax, and I confess that I have been rolling my eyes with each epic escalation. Now, anyways, we've come to the end, and it can't help but be a little underwhelming. The introduction of John Constantine has offset this portentiousness and allowed for more humor;...more
Christopher
I finally found a nice run of Alan Moore's "Swamp Thing" and devoured it. The writing, so know, pretty, pretty good. But enough about that. Alan Moore is no great secret. What lifted most of this collection, for me, from 4 to 5 stars, is the art. The art is so, so strong. The pencils, the inks. Glorious. The panel composition is ridiculously beautiful. Black lettering, white lettering, blank pages, panel crashing into one another, merging with others, lying on top of still others. Really, really...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Alan Moore is an English writer most famous for his influential work in comics, including the acclaimed graphic novels Watchmen, V for Vendetta and From Hell. He has also written a novel, Voice of the Fire, and performs "workings" (one-off performance art/spoken word pieces) with The Moon and Serpent Grand Egypt...more
More about Alan Moore...
Watchmen V for Vendetta Batman: The Killing Joke The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Vol. 1 From Hell

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