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Future State Swamp Thing #1

Review by Paul Bowler

Future State Swamp Thing #1 proves a most welcome addition to DC Comics Future State event. In the aftermath of a terrible war life has been reborn in Swamp Thing’s image. Humanity  hides in the shadow of this new avatar of the green who now rules the Earth. The last survivors of the human race are on the brink of rebellion, but Swamp Thing is no stranger to violence, and if its war they want its war they will get! 

The regular DC Comics line is currently taking a two-month break to make way for DC’s line-wide Future State event, which has been touted as a showcase for new creative teams on many of its core titles and characters that will offer readers a glimpse into a potential future for the DC universe. Fans of Justice League Dark will undoubtably be pleased that writer Ram V is on board here for Future State Swamp Thing #1 to retain the most recent take on the character through into Future State, and together with artist Mike Perkins this new chapter in the Swamp Thing saga flourishes in the creatively fertile soil of this compelling issues grim apocalyptic storyline.

Ram V quickly establishes how in this future the world has succumbed to both the failings of humanity and heroes alike, weaving a dark analogy of the present, with climate change, war and disease ultimately providing civilisations downfall despite all the heroes efforts during Death Metal – or perhaps because of it? Most of the human race is now missing or dead, and of the few remnants of humanity Swamp Thing has managed to retain, sheer loneliness has led him to create offshoots of his own species imbued with the personalities and memories of his various recollections of humanity. Swamp Thing has become the Green Father, but his attempts to recreate humanity in his own image has also given rise to all the best and the worst aspects  of which that lies therein as well.

Mike Perkins artwork is at times gorgeously haunting and beautifully serine. From the strikingly expansive vista recapping the demise of the world though to Swamp Thing’s poetic storytelling to Calla, which in turn contrasts sublimely with conflict proved by the tenacious Indigo, and the warm kindness this Green Father still holds for humanity are all superbly illustrated by Perkins. The subtle use of color by June Chung is also excellent — accentuating the tone and  fine detail of Perkins artwork perfectly.

The inmate weirdness of Swamp Thing’s world and philosophical magical undercurrents are masterfully woven into the narrative by Ram V, which, together with Mike Perkin’s spellbinding art, almost makes it feel like we’re observing a vivisection of the very essence of what makes Swamp Thing the indomitable character that he is as the layers of his being and psyche are slowly peeled away layer by layer before our eyes.

Future State Swamp Thing #1 certainly gets this opening week of Future State off to a good start. With the discovery of a mysterious fortress in the North and the surprise appearance of another prominent DC Comics character, there’s plenty of intrigue on offer to entice us  back for the next issue. If anything, Future State Swamp Thing #1 wets our appetite even more for the 10 issue maxi-series, also by the creative team of Ram V and Mike Perkins, with colors by Mike Spicer, arriving in March.

I wasn’t going to bother with Future State much, apart from Swamp Thing really, but sadly as I write this first review of 2021 the UK is also going back into lockdown. Its a necessary measure, but I won’t lie, I am finding it a little depressing. Hopefully things will get back on track soon once the vaccine gets rolled out. I’m not looking forward to spending more weeks being apart from family and friends either. Fortunately I can do everything from home, and I’ve got my writing to keep me occupied. So, no doubt I’ll end up doing some more box-set binging, I might check out some of the other Future State books as well now I’ll have a bit more time on my hands. Fingers crossed the end of this COVID 19 pandemic isn’t too far off now, so take care, and stay safe everyone. 

Publisher DC Comics

Writer Ram V / Artist Mike Perkins

Colors June Chung / Letters Aditya Bidikar

Cover Mike Perkins and June Chung 

About The Author

Hi, I’m Paul Bowler, blogger and reviewer of films, TV shows, and comic books. I’m a Sci-Fi geek, a big fan of Doctor Who, Star Trek, movies, Sci-Fi, Horror, Comic Books, and all things PS4.You can follow me on Twitter @paul_bowler,or at my website, Sci-Fi Jubilee, and on YouTube and Facebook