Justice League Dark Annual #1
Written by James Tynion IV and Ram V
Art by Guillem March
Colors by Arif Prianto
Letters by Rob Leigh
The Rundown: The rules of magic are changing and Swamp Thing must try to help the new Guardian of the Green accept his destiny.
While the rest of the team works on the fixing magic in the aftermath of taking down the Lords of Order, Constantine arrives to tell Swamp Thing that there is a situation brewing that will require him to intervene. Swamp Thing has lost his connection to the Green and the new guardian is out in the world going through what Alec Holland experienced when he first emerged from the swamp.
The new chosen guardian turns out to be a research scientist living with the pain of a personal loss who has thrown himself into his work and no longer remembers the circumstances that made him into the thing he currently is. Swamp Thing attempts to guide him, but the pain and confusion cause the new guardian to run straight into the arms of Jason Woodrue who has his own plans for the new Guardian of the Green.
The Story: I really like the subtle and somber tone of this story. James Tynion IV and Ram V take their time in this story and allow it to immerse the reader into Swamp Thing’s world as well as the life and memory of the man who will be the new guardian. The writers tackle themes of loss in a way that help shape the reader’s opinions and feelings about the character and what he’s going to. This is a very engaging issue that is a great lead in to the events coming up in Year of the Villain due to the surprise at the end.
The Art: Guillem March’s art is excellent. All of the characters look amazing, but there is great attention given to the vegetation and flowers for obvious reasons. March makes them look beautifully detailed and vibrant.