I’m sure like most children of the 80’s, I have both fond and frightful feelings of Wes Craven’s original Swamp Thing film. It was bold and different for its time, and most likely introduced all things swampy to those who never knew anything about the comic book genre. Two dedicated fans, Jon B. Cooke and George Khoury, spent over a decade wading through the muck gathering just about everything they could on it and made a 200-page book titled Swampmen: Muck-Monsters and Their Makers, which is sure to enthrall fans with its info and interviews while inviting newcomers to get a little dirty.
The front half is filled with short pieces on quite a few comic book swamp monsters and the things that inspired some of them such as Marvin the Dead Thing, The Lurker in the Swamp, The Heap, and The Bog Beast just to name a few. As readers make their way through these detailed and informative pieces, they will eventually get the deep end of the swamp that’s filled with fantastic interviews with those responsible for bringing the swamp and its creatures to life. These include some famous writers and artists like Steve Gerber, Alan Moore, Len Wein, Stephen Bissette, Rick Veitch, Val Mayerick and loads more.
It’s here that you’ll learn all sorts of facts that happened behind the scenes of dredging up the murky depths to the comic pages. Such as Rick Veitch and his walking away from Swamp Thing when DC Comics didn’t publish his story about Swamp Thing being the cross that Jesus was crucified on. Other stories of interest include writers Len Wein and Gerry Conway making Swamp Thing and Man-Thing around the same time, thanks to the two of them being roommates. These along with a few more stories will both shock and inform those who read them.
What would a book dealing with comic books be without loads of awesome pictures? Well you need not fear as there’s plenty of well-detailed art and mucky images littered throughout, from rough drafts to reproductions taken directly from the original comics to images just made for fun. For those of you who thought Swamp Thing was the only game in town, get ready to be shocked and amazed. Whatever the case may be, you better believe there’s loads of great illustrations that fans will get a kick out of while pulling newcomers even further into the algae filled genre.
Swampmen: Muck-Monsters and Their Makers is a unique and fun-filled journey into all comics swamp-like. Fans of the genre and those looking to expand their horizons beyond typical comic book fare are invited to come wade through the muck of great interviews, personal histories, and disgustingly great artwork here as though to say “Come on in, the swamp is fine.” Gross!