"Final Payment": Matthew Cable lies in a hospital bed at Terrebonne Parish General Hospital. His body is emaciated and withering away and he is on life support. While Matthew's mind dreams of an encounter with the biblical Eve, his ex-wife [[

Quote1 I'm sorry... I abused... your love... ! Forgive me, Abby... then forget me. Quote2
Matt Cable

Swamp Thing (Volume 2) #84 is an issue of the series Swamp Thing (Volume 2) with a cover date of March, 1989.

Appearing in "Final Payment"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


  • Hubert Sax (First appearance)

Other Characters:




Synopsis for "Final Payment"

Matthew Cable lies in a hospital bed at Terrebonne Parish General Hospital. His body is emaciated and withering away and he is on life support. While Matthew's mind dreams of an encounter with the biblical Eve, his ex-wife Abigail Holland keeps vigil at his bedside. Abby sees the hospital administrator Hubert Sax who informs her that she is financially liable for all of Matt's hospital costs, which to date, total $2,728,614.12. Abby argues that Matt's employers, the D.D.I. should be covering his expenses, but Sax indicates that he does not have medical insurance. Abby returns to Chester Williams and Elizabeth Tremayne's place.

Abby tells Chester and Liz about her troubles. She also reveals the true nature of her pregnancy. She explains how she is providing a physical vessel for the "Sprout" elemental entity that has caused Alec and she so much trouble in the recent past. They try to find contact information on the D.D.I. to see if they will agree to cover Matt's medical costs, but they come up with very little useful information.

Matthew Cable meanwhile, continues to dream. His soul wanders the ethereal realm of the Dreaming until he meets Morpeus, the lord of all dreams. Morpheus convinces Matt that it is time to give up his mortal life and let go.

Later, Abby returns to the hospital. She learns that Matt was an organ donor and that the hospital has begun procedures to harvest his organs. They've even taken his eyes. Abby is bitter and enraged and begins tearing away at the various life support systems. Matt suddenly comes to, and meekly apologizes to Abby for abusing her love for him. He asks her to let him go. Matthew's body pitches forward and Abby runs from the hospital room in tears.

Back in the swamps, she encounters John Constantine. She has no patience for Constantine's games, but John, privy to Abby's situation, volunteers to help her crack the mystery of the D.D.I. He makes a scrying circle and communes with the spirit of an old friend, Ritchie Simpson. He asks Ritchie to search the global computer networks to find any information relating to the D.D.I. The most that Ritchie can come up with is that the D.D.I. is a top-secret government operation. John then tries to talk to Abby about Alec and their unborn child, but Abby cannot deal with any more problems right now. She tells John to go away.


  • The Swamp Thing does not appear in this issue. The reason for his absence is because he is traveling steadily backwards through time as seen in recent issues of the series. [1]
  • Although Hubert Sax is not truly a villain, his actions and position do paint him as the antagonist for this issue.
  • Adam Strange refers to the Swamp Thing as "Smalsh-Yegger". This is the Swamp Thing's name on the planet Rann.
  • Abby is seen wearing both her wedding ring and the plant ring that Alec created for her in issue #80.
  • One of the acronyms attributed to the D.D.I. in this issue is Deadbeat Depot International. Abby admits that although her ex-husband worked for the D.D.I. for several years, she has no idea what the acronym actually stands for.
  • The dark-haired, pale-faced man that Matt Cable encounters is Morpheus of the endless. Morpheus is the lord of Dreams and dominates the realm known as the Dreaming. He is the featured character from the Sandman title. Matt CaMatt Cable later becomes a supporting character in Sandman after Morpheus transforms into an arcana known as Matthew the Raven.
  • Ritchie Simpson is a cyber-mage and an old colleague of John Constantine. His mortal body was killed while trying to help John on a case and ever since, his spirit has been trapped in cyberspace. [2]
  • John Constantine tells Ritchie Simpson, "Say hullo to Agony and Ecstasy for me [sic]!" Agony and Ecstacy are two demons who have caused trouble for Constantine on occasion. Ecstacy's name is actually spelled with a "c" as the sixth letter, even though the word is usually spelled with an "s" (including this issue). [3]


  • Houma hosts a parade to celebrate the victory of Earth's heroes during the alien invasion. Models on the parade float are dressed up to resemble Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. Another parade float honors those who were killed during the Invasion including Scott Fischer, Celsius and Jet (though Jet will eventually be revealed as still alive).
  • Hubert Sax's office is decorated with various Garfield-related memorabilia, including a Pez dispenser. Garfield is a cat featured in the eponymous comic strip created by Jim Davis.
  • One of the posters in Chester's place reads, "Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out". This was a popular phrase used in the 1960s and coined by psychiatrist Timothy Leary. The phrase became synonymous with the hippie counterculture movement.
  • Another poster on Chester's wall is that of Wonder Wart-Hog. Wonder Wart-Hog is an underground comic book character, created by Gilbert Shelton and Tony Bell. The character is intended as a porcine parody of Superman.

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