SWAMP THING has recently started a new direction. After finally defeating the Rot, Alec Holland has embraced his destiny as being the avatar for the Green. No longer tucked away in his own corner of the New 52 Universe, Swamp Thing is ready to venture out. Soon we'll see the repercussions of that decision.
With two issues under his belt, we asked new SWAMP THING writer, Charles Soule, a few questions.
Comic Vine: In issue #19, we saw Swamp Thing destroy an oasis created by "Seeder" in the middle of the Sudan because it was 'wrong.' Will we see find out more about Seeder or see a confrontation?
Charles Soule: You know it! Seeder is the "big bad" for my first big chunk of issues. He gets teased throughout the first few story arcs, but we won't find out exactly who he is or what he wants for just a little while. Not too long, though - stick around until the fall if you're wondering what's up with Seeder. He's a great villain who has access to many of the same powers as Alec Holland, which makes him an interesting foil. Seeder and Alec differ primarily in perspective, which I always think makes for good confrontations.
CV: Now that Alec has embraced the Green more, will there be a struggle for him to maintain his humanity? The scene with the rats was pretty gross.
CS: It was, wasn't it? Filthy little fur balloons popping in his fist. Grody. To actually answer your question, yes, Alec will struggle. It's not much of a story if everything's easy, after all. Alec Holland surrendered his humanity to the Parliament to serve the plant kingdom in a role he doesn't fully understand. To put it another way, he knows what he's lost, but he's not entirely sure what he's gained, or what he's supposed to do next. Heroes with questions are always more interesting than heroes who are totally sure of themselves all the time.
CV: We saw Swamp Thing's new form of transportation through the Green and the mention that each time he does it the Green wants him to stay. Will this be another struggle he'll face? Will traveling this way become dangerous to his humanity?
CS: If you look at the way Avatars of the Green work, they start out human but eventually become more and more subsumed by the Green, until they enter it themselves, "retiring" and letting a new Avatar take their place. In other words, the Green has beaten down every other Avatar before Alec - it's a tough, dangerous job. Something of a one-way street. Alec will come to realize this, and he'll have some hard decisions to make.
CV: So far we've seen Scarecrow and Superman and Constantine is coming up. Do you have plans for other guest stars?
CS: I do - there's one planned for the Annual that I cannot wait to write. I think it's someone people won't be expecting but they'll be very happy to see. I have some plans for other characters to pop in, but they're far enough off that I don't want to reveal very much just yet. That said, I'm excited about the idea of Swamp Thing fitting more into the DCU, just because it means there are tons of other awesome characters I get to play with. Not to be selfish about it, but I want to use as many of those folks as I can, without compromising what makes Swamp Thing its own book. I mean, it's not supposed to be Swampy and the Superfriends.
CV: The solicits mention Capucine. Will we find out about this character right away or will it be a longer running mystery?
CS: You'll find out quite a bit about her in issue 21, but I want to play a longer game with all of her secrets. The main idea with Capucine is to expand Swamp Thing's supporting cast. She's a super cool character, and I hope the readers embrace her the way I have.
CV: With Constantine coming, could the Justice League Dark be far behind?
CS: I think the JLD has their hands full with the very cool-looking Trinity War for the next little while, but I love those characters. Swamp Thing's shown up over in that book, so while I have no specific plans right this second, I can't see why they wouldn't zip down to the bayou at some point.
CV: How will the public react to Swamp Thing when they become aware of him? Will he be seen as a hero or an eco-terrorist of sorts?
CS: Well, that's all going to depend on context, won't it? Based on what happens in 19 and 20, I have a feeling poor Swampy isn't going to be all that welcome in densely populated urban areas any time soon. In any case, we have some amazing stories on the way, with art that will blow your mind. I hope you'll all continue to check out the issues - and tell your friends!
SWAMP THING #20 is on sale now. Issue 21 is on sale June 5.