Swamp Thing, You Make Everything Groovy
The White Lantern has resurrected Alec Holland in an attempt to quell the Black Lantern animated husk of Swamp Thing and save the Earth as the White Lantern has finally revealed the mystery it has been weaving over the course of Brightest Day.
Most things fit together nicely in this extra-sized final issue of Brightest Day as it ties everything neatly into a pretty little bow with just enough loose ends to allow the DC Universe to continue to change and grow, while leaving many of its characters changed forever, in this event’s aftermath.
This event has also successfully re-imagined and then thrust a lot fan favorite DC Vertigo characters like Swamp Thing, and others with its final reveal, into the limelight and give them a chance to flourish in the mainstream DC Universe now. It will definitely be interesting to see what happens to these characters and see how they are developed by DC and how or if they’ll interact with other mainstream heroes and villains.
Even with this final issue being an extra-sized one, the pace seemed frantic, like too much needed to be explained and tied up before Johns and Tomasi ran out of pages to do it in. This made the final confrontation between Alec Holland and the Dark Avatar feel much too short and simple for deciding the fate of the planet. Plus, this left only a few panels to explain what happens to each resurrected character now and you could clearly see that the extra pages were simply a prologue without actually calling it one.
On top of this, I really wasn’t happy with what happened to a lot of the characters in the end. I understand that Deadman had to return to his ghostly form otherwise he’d really have no place amongst the super-powered beings of the DC Universe, but I think it would have been better if the visions of Captain Boomerang slaying Dove came true instead. Or Hawk, who was scolded by the White Lantern for being the only resurrected member of the 12 to have failed in his mission, was sacrificed anyway instead of either Deadman or Dove for not finding his purpose like the others had. The fact that some characters did not come back upon Swamp Thing’s victory in order to allow other characters to grow left a bad taste in my mouth.
A brilliant way to re-introduce and redefine a classic DC Vertigo character and find a way for him to fit into the mainstream universe, Brightest Day will pave the way for characters like Swamp Thing, Aquaman, Hawkman, Martian Manhunter, and Firestorm to maybe see a bit of a renaissance within the DCU and helps to reset the universe back to simpler and maybe better times. Unfortunately, this all came at the cost of several other characters that I personally preferred over some that were brought back and felt that this final issue felt like it was trying to hammer home themes of personal growth and overcoming loss way too much for my liking.
Overall, this issue is something you need to pick up, whether you like what happens in it or not, as it will reshape many characters in the DCU from here on out and serves as a perfect place to get back into the DCU if you haven’t been following it for a while as many characters have had the chance to have their reset button pressed for new fans to become acclimated to them.