Written by Maggie Stiefvater
Art by Morgan Beem
Published by DC Comics
The first Swamp Thing story I remember reading was an Alan Moore written team up. Superman was deathly sick from fungus on a meteorite. It was dark, creepy, atmospheric, suspenseful.
I was all of eight years old. Never underestimate what appeals to a young reader.
Which brings me to Swamp Thing: Twin Branches. Maggie Stiefvater tells a tale of adolescent angst. Morgan Beem’s art brings a lot of style to a tale that lacks depth.
Alec and Walker Holland are twins with very different personalities.
Alec is introverted. Walker is the extrovert. Alec is obsessed with his plant experiments.
They discover that their Dad is cheating on their Mom. This family drama leads to a move with their aunt. A mishap leads to his aunt’s dogs eating one of his science experiments. Alec’s Type 1 diabetes also to the discovery of an unexpected benefit to his science work.
Along the way, Alec and Walker meet new friends and fall into conflict with each other.
By the end, the brothers are reunited.
But this is all as expected.
The story lacks real drama. It strains a bit when making the analogy to plant life and adolescence. The relationship drama between Alec and his brother comes to a climax, but it never builds to that climax.
It’s not bad by any means, just lightweight.
Morgan Beem’s art really lifts this book. His depiction of plant creatures manages to be creepy without being too dark. It really adds dimension to this book.
Aimed at the young adult market, this is certainly a different Swamp Thing tale than your used to.