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The Search for Swamp Thing #2
BDAYAST1
Story title(s)
'The Search for Swamp Thing: chapter two'
Cover
Ardian Syaf, Vicente Cifuentes and Ulises Arreola (regular); Ivan Reis, Joe Prado and Rod Reis (variant)
Art
Renato Ralem
Colours
Barb Ciardo
Letters
Sal Cipriano
Editor
Rex Ogle and Eddie Berganza
Cover date
September 2011
Collected in

DCUsmallThis DCU comic or concept is separate from Vertigo's Hellblazer series.

The Search for Swamp Thing #2 (September 2011) continues the spin-off from Brightest Day. Constantine meets up with Superman, while Alec Holland encounters a mysterious scientist.

Solicitation textEdit

Who has been cursed to find the Swamp Thing... and can Superman and the other heroes stop him?

Plot summaryEdit

Constantine is on a plane to Metropolis at the suggestion of Batman when suddenly the runway explodes into a series of giant roots and vines that whip up and grab the planes out of the air. It looks like they're all doomed until Superman appears and lands the plane safely on the ground, while using his heat vision to burn up the plants' tendrils. After dealing with them, Superman flies up to Constantine and says that Batman told him he would be coming, then berates John for not lending a hand during the attack. John says that his hands are already in too much trouble, and as he lifts a cigarette to his mouth he reveals that his right hand has become entirely covered by the plant material that Swamp Thing had infected him with in the previous issue.

Constantine says that the attack was due to Swamp Thing, and that he needs Superman's help. Superman, irritated, grabs Constantine to escort him out of the area only to fall down, weakened by a protective circle that John drew around himself. John had correctly guessed that Batman would ask Superman to interrogate John via intimidation. As Superman slumps to the floor, John says that he just needs some help finding Alec Holland.

TSFST2 hand

The green right hand

Alec himself has just finished clawing his way out of the swamp when he finds himself at the feet of a man dressed in laboratory clothing that covers his entire body. The man offers to take him to a safe place where he can get cleaned up. It turns out that place is Holland's old laboratory, where he conducted his research. But when Holland says this, the man says that he is mistaken - the building is actually owned by Lexcorp, Lex Luthor's company. Holland says that his memory is fragmented, that he can remember elements of his life before the explosion that flung him into the swamp, and elements of another, ghostly life that came after. The scientist, still clad in his suit, says that he's suffering from swamp fever and that he needs to lie down.

TSFST2 flying

Superman gives John a lift

Back at the airport, Superman agrees to held John out, though he knows Constantine's only looking out for himself. Superman flies Constantine to Star City's forest, where the two Swamp Things battled in Brightest Day. Superman says he's surprised that Constantine didn't think to go there before in order to make contact with Swamp Thing himself, but Constantine says (in a monologue to the reader) that this did occur to him - he just needed someone like Superman on his side in case things got nasty. He draws up another protective circle while Superman flies above him, but when the hero looks down he sees Swamp Thing's shape in the foliage of the tree-tops.

A series of tendrils fly out to grab Constantine but the spell keeps them at bay for now; Constantine asks Swamp Thing what he wants, and Swampy says that he needs Constantine's help to eradicate the human race altogether. Constantine turns him down, and as the tendrils push through the barrier and grab him, he confirms his suspicions: this isn't Swamp Thing at all, but The Green, untethered by a human consciousness. Without Alec Holland's mind to guide it, it's been reduced to blind fury. And now it wants Constantine to be its new guiding consciousness.

TSFST2 trouble

John's in trouble... again

Just then, Superman swoops in, blasting the creature with his heat beams. John sticks his hand in the way, killing off the plant that surrounds it (his own skin is protected by the plants' elemental energy). The creature falls and says that it needs Holland's consciousness. Superman lands and complains again that John's only in it to save his own neck, but John adds that he'll be saving the world into the bargain - and Superman can help him out if he wants, although it'll mean being party to some very nasty acts. Because he needs to bind Holland's consciousness back into the Swamp Thing - and that means killing Holland again.

Back in the shack, the masked scientist brings out a jar that Holland identifies as the bio-restorative formula that he was working on when he first died. The scientist says that he's improved on the formula since that time. He adds that he can show Holland the part of him that's missing, and turns on a light to reveal the Swamp Thing!

Continued in The Search for Swamp Thing issue three.

ContinuityEdit

  • Constantine calls Batman 'young Bats'; at the time this issue came out, both Dick Grayson (a former Robin) and Bruce Wayne were operating as Batman in Gotham City. Presumably it was Dick that Constantine met in the previous issue.
  • Superman's susceptibility to magic has long been an element of his comics.
  • Holland's memories are half his own, from before the accident that killed him, and half those of the Swamp Thing; presumably this is the result of them merging consciousnesses at the end of Brightest Day.
  • Holland says that he remembers falling in love with 'a woman with white hair' - he's talking about Abigail Arcane, who later 'married' Swamp Thing.
  • Constantine says that the cigarettes tried to kill him - suggesting that the lung cancer he contracted in the Hellblazer storyline 'Dangerous Habits' also happened at some point in the new Constantine's history.

NotesEdit

BDAYAST2

The variant cover for The Search for Swamp Thing #2

  • As with every issue in the miniseries, this issue came with an alternative cover.
  • Additionally, to keep the appearance of Constantine in the DCU a surprise for the end of Brightest Day (this issue was solicited before Brightest Day had concluded), Constantine was blacked out from the cover featured in the solicitations text.
The Brightest Day Aftermath The Search for Swamp Thing-2 Cover-1 Teaser

The solicited cover, with a silhouetted Constantine

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