What a twist! So many things happened in last week’s episode of Swamp Thing, that I didn’t even know where to begin with what I was anticipating most. Of course it may be a bit cliche that a small town like this is drowning in so many dark secrets, this does not change the excitement in most of it. There are dangers to these swamps, but the people themselves are just as much of a danger to each other, and to themselves. Including the ones who act even with the best of intentions.
Now with that said, the biggest thing is the way that the previous episode ended. Who else was shocked that Swamp Thing managed to transform himself back into Alec Holland. This guy was! As I said before, Andy Bean plays a great Alec Holland, but you never would have expected to see that much of him once he transformed into the Swamp Thing. Every scene after that where he managed to make an appearance in human form was a treat. Now more than ever when you want to know just how this could happen. Obviously temporary, but so many questions are raised about this twist. Now as much as we wanted questions to bite into, the writers did the right thing by dispelling much of what we thought was the case right away. It took little time for them to address what was actually happening in that moment, and it worked. If you read Swamp Thing, then you know that becoming human again is just not in Alec’s future. This right here that we were seeing was the next best thing. Not to mention it makes it easier for Abby to take in what’s going on around her without staring at a giant monster.
At this stage in the story, Abby continues to become a strong lead. The only cliche we could have ever run into for this story is too much ignorance to what’s right in front of her. That’s easy when it comes to people and their intentions, but it’s hard to ignore the supernatural when one of your greatest allies is currently a swamp monster. How she takes all this in, processes it, and continues to press forward also adds to the nightmare of this story as well. What you truly get from a character like Abby in this setting, is someone who will journey too far into the darkness for answers. Her first taste of curiosity getting the best of her was chilling. I pretty much jumped out of my seat because Abby’s character history is not one that assures you she’s invincible.
With so little transparency left for Avery and Maria, I was bracing myself for what this chapter would bring them. For Avery, I enjoyed another week where his past misdeeds were coming back to bite him. As someone who is his age, there’s not a lot that you expect that he is willing to do himself, so that automatically leads to loose strings that get you to where you are now. Considering what Lucilia has done already to protect Matt, I couldn’t help but anticipate what could come of their trip to the swamp to fix the ‘Alec Problem’. This could have gone a lot of ways considering the kind of guy Avery is. However, they took the right path which shakes things up. The worst thing you could do in this phase is allow too much predictability from Avery.
As for Maria, meeting with this shadowy finance group known as the Conclave, that was a scene worth building up to. When you get past her recent madness, she is actually someone you don’t want to underestimate. Today’s episode proved just that with the way she took control of Avery’s plans. I mean, it’s her money, right? I don’t think there will be a single viewer by the end of this episode who isn’t taken back by the level of tact she really has.
While the town has its own problems, this was a good week to remind us that there is still a darkness out there as well. Great effects again that they used to emphasize that this darkness is a force of nature just like the Green.
Swamp Thing “Brilliant Disguise” was heartbreaking for a lot of reasons, but most importantly for allowing the right characters to step up to the plate, for better or for worse. As engaging as the town drama may be, this was the time to give some of this characters something genuine to fight for. You can only get a strong story like this when everyone is playing on the same level. That means people waking up to the darkness around them, or the things holding them back from the answers they seek.