So hey, the final cover by Ardian Syaf and Vicente Cifuentes for Brightest Day Aftermath: The Search for Swamp Thing #1 has been revealed with the previously blacked-out figures now not blacked-out, and they are revealed to be…
…John Constantine and Zatanna! Well, I can see why they blacked out Constantine, since he was the big surprise reveal at the end of Brightest Day #24 (er…SPOILER), but not so sure why Zatanna was kept under wraps. Ah, well, I’m sure they had their reasons.
And in DC’s ongoing quest to part me from my money by forcing me…yes, forcing, at gunpoint…to buy two copies of the same damned thing, here’s the limited retailer incentive variant cover by J.G. Jones for said #1:
Well…okay, that’s pretty good. Kinda prefer this one to the regular cover. But it doesn’t matter because I’m getting both, regardless.
That first cover is fairly amusing, though, with dour ol’ Batman, Superman and Zatanna pulling their best sourpuss faces, with John lightin’ up a smoke right there in front of them. Just the idea of Constantine pulling his irreverent “I’m gonna jerk you guys around and you won’t even realize it” routine on DC’s superfellas (and gals) sounds like fun. Let’s hope it is.
This put me in the mind of other times Constantine kinda sorta met Superman and Batman…he’s met Zatanna plenty of times, of course, since she’s a bit easier to fit into Constantine’s milieu. But to squeeze Batman and Superman together with our favorite Hellblazer, one must look back to the mid-1980s and Crisis on Infinite Earths:
That’s from Swamp Thing #46 (March 1986), and I think this is the only time Batman, Superman and Constantine appear together in the same image ’til that cover up above. I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong.
Of course, they’re not really interacting there at all. They just happen to be in the same room during that scene shown in Crisis on Infinite Earths #5, where several dozen characters are gathered together on the Monitor’s satellite. (Constantine doesn’t seem to actually be in that two-page group shot in Crisis #5, though Swamp Thing is. NOTE: I’m also bad at “Where’s Waldo,” so don’t take my word for it.) However, a couple of issues earlier, Constantine and former Doom Patrol associate Mento (whom Constantine is manipulating toward his own ends) run into a familiar Caped Crusader during the early stages of the Crisis:
I don’t know why I find this funny, but after Batman makes his “well, nice to meet you, but I gots things to do, kids” parting remarks, there’s this great panel of Batman running away:
That shot of Batman putting on his “I’m thinking really hard” face is a good one, too.
UNRELATED except for the fact that this is from one of the Swamp Thing comics I was scanning pics from: in #46 we see all the heroes (plus Swampy and John) called together by Alexander Luthor, the son of the Earth-3 Luthor (and if you don’t know what I’m talking about, ask someone old to explain it to you), and Swamp Thing has this reaction to hearing the name:
Now, I don’t know if this is one of these things I’ve noticed before but it’s been so long since I’ve reread these I’ve forgotten, or that I just picked up on it now, but Swampy’s “premonition” is apparently of his seeming “death” a few months later in #53, in which Lex Luthor (of Earth One, or Post-Crisis Earth, or whatever you want to call it) was involved.
Or possibly the premonition was foreshadowing that, 20 years later in the Infinite Crisis crossover event series, Alexander Luthor would turn into a complete asshole. …Hey, given Alan Moore’s dabbling in the magical realms, I wouldn’t put it past him foreseeing this.