So I finally picked up one of those DC Super Pets kids books for myself, and it should probably be obvious why:
Yup, it’s because I loves me some opossums. Also, Swamp Thing is in this book.
It’s a prose book, done in the classic kid book style with many colorful illustrations, giving me flashbacks to my long-ago tenure as a children’s librarian. There’s a section at the front of the book presenting an illustrated dramatis personae of the folks within, informing us that those four animals with Swampy on the cover are in fact his pets, the Down Home Critter gang (Mossy the Skunk, Merle the Possum, Loafers the Basset Hound, and Starlene the Raccoon).
The story involves Solomon Grundy and his own legion of evil pets attempting to raise up the dead pets from all the pet cemeteries around the world as his personal army…pretty gruesome for a kid’s book, I think as an adult in my forties, while realizing from personal library experience that kids would be perfectly okay with this. Anyway, Batman and Ace the Bathound are involved, because why not, and when Swamp Thing takes off with Batman in the Batplane to handle trouble elsewhere in the marshlands:
…that leaves the Down Home Critter Gang to deal with the menace for the majority of the story.
It’s all cute and funny, with Solomon’s pets being suitably gross, and it’s charmingly illustrated by Art Baltazar, which should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with his work from Tiny Titans or Superman Family. Plus, there are some nice shots of Swamp Thing throughout, including a full page image of him shaking hands with Batman, which is probably the last thing I ever expected to see in a children’s picture book. And at one point, Solomon Grundy stands in a graveyard and commands “rise, zombie pets, rise!” which reminds me of Blackest Night so I’m going to think of this as tie-in, just because.