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"Dr. Alec Holland had all the answers... he was an intelligent man... but Alec Holland is dead... and in his place stands only a... SWAMP THING!"
The Swamp Thing
"Dark Genesis"
Roots of the Swamp Thing 1
Roots of the Swamp Thing
Title: "Dark Genesis"
Volume: 1
number: 1
Cover date: July, 1986
Publisher: DC Comics
Credits
Executive editor: Dick Giordano
Writers: Len Wein
Pencilers: Bernie Wrightson
Inkers: Bernie Wrightson
Cover artists: Bernie Wrightson
Cover inker: Bernie Wrightson
Cover colorist: Bernie Wrightson
Colorists: Glynis Wein
Letterers: Gaspar Saladino
Editors: Joe Orlando
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Next: Roots of the Swamp Thing #2

Roots of the Swamp Thing reprints classic comic book stories from previous issues of titles published by DC Comics. Issue #1 reprints the stories from the first two issues of the first Swamp Thing ongoing comic book series. The stories included in this issue are "Dark Genesis" and "The Man Who Wanted Forever". The stories are written by Len Wein with artwork by Bernie Wrightson, who also provided embellishment work for this issue. The cover art features an original wrap-around cover penciled and inked by Wrightson. The second story was colored by Glynis Wein and it was lettered by Gaspar Saladino and edited by Joe Orlando. This issue shipped with a July, 1986 cover date and carried a cover price of $2.00 per copy (US).

"Dark Genesis" Edit

D.D.I. agent Matthew Cable drives his friends, the scientists Alec and Linda Holland, to a remote cabin in the Louisiana bayou. The Hollands are working on a top-secret Bio-restorative formula designed to stimulate hormonal growth in plant life, enabling plants to grow in hostile terrain.

Midway through their research, they hear a knock on the door. A group of men representing an organization known as the Conclave introduce themselves, and expresses great interest in the Hollands' work. The leader of the men, Maxwell Ferrett, offers the scientists a blank check in exchange for exclusive rights to their work. Alec tells them that their information is not for sale. Ferrett prepares to strong-arm them, but another man, Bruno, notices Matt Cable's car pulling up to the cabin. Ferrett and the others leave, promising to return. Alec and Linda tell Matt about their encounter.

Ferrett reports back to his boss, Mister E. Mister E tells them to make one more attempt to buy the Hollands' research. If they still refuse, then drastic measures will be required. Ferrett returns, but Alec angrily threatens to call the cops unless they leave them alone. The goons knock Alec unconscious, and plant an explosive underneath one of the laboratory tables. Alec comes to and tries to escape, but the bomb explodes dousing him with various samples of the Bio-restorative formula. His body erupts into flame, and Alec stumbles outside into the swamp where he falls over dead.

Days later, Linda and Matt Cable hold a small funeral service for Alec Holland. What they do not realize is that the Bio-Restorative formula has resurrected the essence of Alec Holland into the body of a grotesque Swamp Thing. Although he still maintains the intellect of Alec Holland, he cannot speak. The Swamp Thing stands guard, and watches over the cabin after Linda returns home.

Ferrett and Bruno raid the cabin and murder Linda. The Swamp Thing finds her body and flies into a rage. He chases the men out into the swamp. He catches Bruno first, and smashes his jaw with one solid punch. Ferrett fires his pistol at the monster, but the bullets are ineffective. The Swamp Thing turns about and kills Ferrett. Matt Cable appears on the scene, and mistakenly believes that the muck monster is responsible for the death of Linda Holland.

Elsewhere, miles away in an ancient castle, a mysterious man observes the events in the Louisiana bayou and develops a strong interest in the Swamp Thing.

Appearances Edit

Featured characters Edit

Supporting characters Edit

Antagonists Edit

Minor characters Edit

Organizations Edit

Races Edit

Locations Edit

Items Edit

Vehicles Edit

Powers Edit

"The Man Who Wanted Forever" Edit

From a distance, the Swamp Thing watches an ambulance loading up the body of Maxwell Ferrett - the man who murdered his wife, Linda Holland. He thinks back upon recent events and the road of violence that led to him being caught in a blast of exploding chemicals that ultimately turned Alec Holland into the Swamp Thing. But it is violence of another kind that shakes the beast out of his reverie. A horde of grotesque misshapen freaks descends upon him and attack. One of these "Un-Men", a serpentine creature named Ophidian uses his hypnotic gaze to render the Swamp Thing inert. They drag him onto a seaplane and fly off across the Atlantic Ocean.

The plane flies across the ocean until it reaches the Balkans in Southeast Europe. The Un-Men crucify the Swamp Thing and bind him to a wooden wagon, which they then take below ground and into a winding series of catacombs. They bring him to the mountain castle of their master - a scientist and sorcerer named Anton Arcane. Arcane is a man of advanced age and ill health. By using a mystic mirror, he reveals that he knows that the Swamp Thing is really Alec Holland and declares that he has the means to turn him human again. In exchange, he wants to supplant his own consciousness into the body of the Swamp Thing. Alec is desperate to regain his humanity, so he agrees to Arcane's terms.

Anton Arcane shows him a large ornate vase, which he calls a Soul Jar. As he speaks an incantation, he has the Swamp Thing fuel the spell with his intense feelings of desire to be human again. The spell works and Alec Holland is reborn. Anton Arcane's mind now resides within the body of the Swamp Thing.

Later, Alec overhears Arcane pontificating over how he will have revenge upon the villagers who failed to recognize his genius. He realizes too late that he has made a deal with the Devil and does not know how he can fix this. He races to confront Arcane, but is intercepted by one of the Un-Men. Alec tears loose a piece of his robe and uses it to strangle the creature. He then finds Arcane and smashes the Soul Jar. Doing so reverses the spell and Arcane's mind returns to his original body and Alec Holland becomes the Swamp Thing again. Arcane tries to escape from him and summons more Un-Men, but while fleeing, he loses his balance and falls out the castle window to his doom. The Swamp Thing beats back the throng of Un-Men and makes his way to the bottom of the castle.

From the shadows, a strange individual watches the Swamp Thing with great interest.

Appearances Edit

Featured characters Edit

Supporting characters Edit

Antagonists Edit

Minor characters Edit

Organizations Edit

Races Edit

Locations Edit

Items Edit

Vehicles Edit

Powers Edit

Notes & Trivia Edit

  • This issue includes an original wrap-around cover art illustration by Bernie Wrightson.
  • This issue includes a one-page text article and mini-bio of writer Len Wein.

Recommended Reading Edit

See also Edit

External Links Edit



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