Saturday, February 29, 2020

Swamp Thing Annual #7: The Children's Crusade

Tefé meets Jimmy Savile.

I don't know why this comic book isn't with all of the other Children's Crusade comic books. I guess I'm terrible at organizing my comic books (I say as if it's a debatable opinion while two stacks of random comic books sit on the book shelf next to a comic book short box empty of all but envelopes and bills to be shredded). So now this comic book won't make much sense and when I finally find the box with my other Children's Crusade comic books, I'll have forgotten this story and will become confused by the missing chapter. I'm a little bit upset about this. But I won't be upset for long because earlier I noticed I have some Kid Eternity comic books in this stack and guess who wrote Kid Eternity? Ann Nocenti! Holy shit, I can't wait to read that oubliette full of earnest confusion.

This is the exact middle chapter of the story. But I don't think I'll be too confused because I remember how the Dead Boy Detectives were searching for the Free Country where all the endangered and abused children wind up. It was easy to remember that once I read "The Story So Far..." bit at the beginning.

Tefé has found herself alone in the swamp because Swamp Thing and Lady Jane and Abby Arcane are all on adventures. Unless they're dead. I wasn't reading Swamp Thing back then. I don't think I ever read Swamp Thing. I know! I'm like the greatest comic book reviewer on the Internet and I've never read Alan Moore's "The Anatomy Lesson." It's possible that in another blog post somewhere in my thousands of blog posts I pretended that I read it. But that would probably have been early on when I was worried that people wouldn't take me seriously if I started announcing having not read a bunch of the landmark comic book series. I also never read that Green Arrow where Speedy was caught sucking dick for heroin. And I never read Miller's Daredevil or Batman: Year One. Also I never read any major Marvel moment prior to the late 90s. Unless Wolverine and Kitty Pryde was one of those titles. My friend Philip Newby had the limited series scattered all over his living room floor and I scrounged them all up and read them. It should go without saying that I don't remember them. I'm like that. Why should I remember the genius things I read when I can't even remember all of the genius things I write?!

Puck arrives to take Tefé to the Free Country because he's a nice guy who only wants the best for all the children of the world. Roland and Paine, the Dead Boy Detectives, arrive moments too late to follow them. Looks like they'll have to try following Dorothy Spinner over in the Doom Patrol annual.

Speaking of Dorothy Spinner, I can't wait until the second season of DC Universe's Doom Patrol! Bring on the Candlemaker!

Seems like a decent place, housing kids from the Holocaust, kids working out of coal mines, kids being sexually abused. Why then am I so suspicious of it?!

Like most annuals and stories about children, this tale has bored the ever-living joy out of me. Hopefully nobody is reading this and just thought, "Oh yeah? Cry me a river! I just got diagnosed with cancer!" Because then I'd have to admit that I care more about my level of boredom than somebody else's life and death situation.

The washed-out kid with Mark Buckingham face explains how Free Country began during the Crusades which isn't surprising because the entire idea of the Crusades should have been enough to cancel Catholicism. I tend to get annoyed with people who infantilize homo sapiens from hundreds or thousands of years in the past, as if our ability to understand the world around us only kicked off some time around the Industrial Revolution. But then I think about some of the atrocious things people did in the name of religion and I think maybe those people should be seen as less formed than modern people. But then I also think about how beautiful works of Gothic architecture were created by these people and I reach this conclusion: homo sapiens have always had the potential to create great and beautiful works while simultaneously having the potential for great cruelty fueled by greed, selfishness, and paranoia. It is only the coming together of those two things that could have built Notre-Dame. At least the cruelty toward "lesser" men was focused to create something beautiful in the cases of cathedrals whereas sometimes the cruelty was as simply front facing as sending as many people as possible to die in a foreign land for nearly no other reason than to kill as many different people as they could who already lived there. And then I remember that modern homo sapiens aren't really any different but when is the last time we built a fucking magnificent cathedral?! Oh, sure, we sent people to the moon! But I can't visit the moon while simultaneously being scolded by a German or French priest to remove my Goddamned hat.

This spoon sent me down a YouTube rabbit hole beginning at the opening theme to Vegetable Soup (because it had a funky cartoon spoon as host) and ended at The Banana Splits credits where I learned in the comment section that in 2019 there was a Banana Splits horror movie. Now I'm mad at everybody I know for not telling me about this.

Tefé and Maxine go on some mini-Lord of the Rings journey to destroy some goblin and save Free Country. They use their powers over vegetables and animals to save the day and everybody cheers. I don't know why Free Country, a safe haven for children, also includes an evil land full of evil Gobble-You-Ups. I guess you need some sort of conflict to distract the child populace from whatever true evil is going on in this place. The leaders of Free Country probably drink children's blood to survive.

It turns out it was all a game and then Tefé almost dies because she's been away from the Green too long. The kids reluctantly send her back home so that she doesn't die but Maxine decides to stay so she can have an adventure with Dorothy Spinner.

Swamp Thing Annual #7: The Children's Crusade Rating: I don't rate annuals. If I have rated an annual in the past, it was a mistake and/or a hallucination. Also there's a second story after the first one that I haven't read yet because I forgot about it. And since I've already stopped this review with the ratings paragraph, I will not be discussing it even if it has street walking flowers in pumps and bell bottom jeans wearing flower Johns and ends with Flower Superbaby being sent into space. Also there is a third story that I didn't forget about because I just realized it exists. It's a retelling of The Beauty and the Beast.

Speaking of The Beauty and the Beast, I was recently told that Gaston in the live action Beauty and the Beast was gay and my reaction was, "So he wanted Belle as a beard?" And the answer was, "Yes. That is the plot." And now I can't bare to watch it because if that isn't true, I will be devastated.

No comments:

Post a Comment