Swamp Thing S:1, E:1

You ever have one of those really great ideas that you never find the time to get around to? I’m not talking about cleaning out your garage, memorizing all the American presidents in chronological order, or learning how to ice skate…I’m talking about something that could possibly change your life forever.

Well, I had one of those ideas about a year ago. And as my great ideas usually go I just never found the time to put it into action. It was always something…new baby, school, work, lack of enthusiasm…

Well, starting today all that’s gonna’ change and I’m going to get cracking on my really great idea!

I plan on watching and blogging about all 72 episodes of SWAMP THING THE SERIES right here on Spectacular Optical!

Now I’m absolutely positive this will in no way whatsoever increase the traffic to Spectacular Optical…so I’m under no pressure to stick to any schedule or time frame (or even worry about the quality of the posts)….and that’s just the way we like it around these parts.

Oh, and don’t go expecting a whole bunch of technical specs and deep background information from me…I’ll leave that stuff to other websites like the awesome ARCANE KNOWLEDGE and the handful of other Swamp Thing related sites on the internet.

Okay then…let’s do this!

Season 1, episode 1: THE EMERALD HEART

The series opens with a sweet shot of a dwarf hanging upside down in the middle of a swamp and then the opening credits kick in….lots of swampy goodness like trees, alligators, lizards, a boat, more trees, Swamp Thing walking, even more trees and in lieu of an origin story we get this great voice over:

The Swamp is my world
It is who I am… It is what I am.
I was once a man.
I know the evil men do.
Do not bring your evil here, I warn you…
Do not incur the wrath of…Swamp Thing!

Episode 1 gives us quite a bit of set up and not much Swamp Thing…which is okay I guess…we’re introduced to 11-year-old compulsive liar Jim Kipp (Jess Ziegler), his single mom Tressa (Carrell Myers), his grandmother Savanna (Patricia Helwick), Humphrey the dwarf, and the amazingly coiffed Mark Lindsay Chapman as Dr. Anton Arcane.

I know this is Swamp Thing’s show, but I’m a sucker for a good villain…and based on this first episode, I have a feeling that Dr. Arcane and his ridiculously large hair-do and shoulder pads are going to be the reasons I watch all 72 episodes…And if he lets me down, there’s always Tressa’s magnificent bangs and smaller, subtler shoulder pads to keep me tuning in.

So anyway, Jim rescues a dwarf, has his boat stolen by mutated Toad Boy and befriends a swamp monster all in one afternoon…this is clearly the best day in any 11 year old’s life, never mind in the life of a displaced, at risk tween like Jim. Of course Jim’s mom just doesn’t believe a word of any of this and decides to pack Jim up and send him away from the swamp and all its Huckleberry Finn-esque adventures (minus the whole post-Civil war racial prejudice stuff).

Swamp Thing gets some screen time and uses it well by talking crazy talk to Jim (“Only dumb kids dream. The more I tell you about myself, the less you know. This swamp is me! The Swamp is me. I am The Swamp!“) and by using his cool swampy powers to bring the recently murdered Humphrey back to life and turning one of Arcane’s killer goons into a living tree-man!

There’s a bit more blah, blah, blah about the emerald heart necklace, Jim’s socialization problems and Tressa’s childhood but then things pick up again when Dr. Arcane and his early 90s, side ponytail wearing “salacious dish” find the escaped Humphrey and take him back to Arcane’s super-creepy, super-secret cave hideout. Turns out Humphrey was slated to be one of the doctor’s craaazy experiments in genetic engineering….you see, once Arcane graduated from a major medical school at age 19 he turned to a lifetime of translocating phenomenal genetic material from one species to another

…that’s right, we’re talking the most egregious abuses of medical research: HUMAN-ANIMAL HYBRIDS! In addition to his medically deviant ways, Arcane further struts his bad guy stuff by intimidating his date by introducing her to his chained up genetic “failures”, slaps said date around a bit for having a smart mouth, and then makes his date do a striptease (that’s all tease and no strip) to sexually torture poor a dwarf.

Eventually Arcane tires of this erotically-charged, dance-induced suffering to Humphrey’s pants area so he pulls out a gun and puts Humphrey down with a shot to the dome. Seriously you guys, Anton Arcane must have received his doctorate in Jerkology…and I can hardly wait to see what he does next.

After that bit of awesomeness we’re back to Jim’s grandma’s house…Tressa decides to let Jim stay in the swamps with grandma while she hightails it back to Philadelphia, childless and without a care in the world! Naturally, Jim is totally stoked and we’re primed and ready for the adventure to continue in episode 2!

So that’s that….stay tuned for more SWAMP THING THE SERIES coverage right here at Spectacular Optical!

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