"Fish Story": This story is reprinted from Swamp Thing (Volume 2) #39.

Essential Vertigo: Swamp Thing #20 is an issue of the series Essential Vertigo: Swamp Thing (Volume 1) with a cover date of June, 1998.

Appearing in "Fish Story"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


Other Characters:

  • Bill
  • Osgood (Dies)
  • Nicky Shapiro
  • Joan Shapiro (Dies)
  • Howard
  • Tammy
  • Jack





Synopsis for "Fish Story"

This story is reprinted from Swamp Thing (Volume 2) #39.

After the boys Nicky and Howard don't come home overnight, their parents interrogate their friend Bill for information. Eventually, all of the parents decide to go out to Rosewood and find them.

Swamp Thing encounters the vampires in the sunken town of Rosewood, and when they discover that he has no blood, they begin to herd him toward the site of the "nativity," the old stadium, which is full of eggs. Swamp Thing watches in horror as the eggs hatch, and the newborn creatures devour each other until only one remains – a giant fish-like vampire which attacks and destroys his body.

Meanwhile, the parents discover Nicky and Howard at the water's edge. Nicky, now a vampire, lures his own mother to them, and then drains her of her blood. Soon after, his father is devoured by the fish-creature, along with Bill's father. The remaining parents grab Howard and drive away in horror.

Swamp thing allows his body to die once more, and then rebirths, this time ever quicker. He then stretches his consciousness out across The Green. He gathers his energies and becomes one with the land, adjusting the terrain so that the water within the lake begins flowing again – right into the river that birthed it. The vampires residing in the lake cannot survive running water, and they die as their flesh is torn off their skeletons. This is a rather significant leap from the powers we've seen him display previously. He is learning more and more to wield the power that he has available to him.

Later, Swamp Thing encounters John Constantine in the ruins of the now drained town of Rosewood. Astonishingly, the Swamp thing is able to perform a complete body regeneration in only fifty-one seconds, suggesting that he has already learned much about himself and his abilities due to his association with John Constantine. John expresses his disappointment that the outcome of their endeavor has caused word to spread supporting the existence of vampires. This plays right into the hands of those responsible; it helps create the "right sort of atmosphere" to allow their plan to come into fruition. After he offers this cryptic warning – which is consistent with the theory Emma shared with him shortly before she died – he asks that they meet again in Kennescook, Maine in two weeks. They then part ways.



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