Swamp Thing series premiere recap: Pilot

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Swamp Thing–Ep.101–“Pilot”–Photo Credit: Brownie Harris / 2018 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved

While Abby is collecting Alec’s samples to take to the hospital lab (not a contamination threat at all), Alec goes to investigate the swamp. He finds one of the drop sites. Before he can do anything, a person who looks like the killer from I Know What You Did Last Summer shines a flood light in his face. Alec sees the slicker bro in another boat. He also sees the bro has a shotgun, but it’s too late to react. Alec is shot multiple times. Long John Silver throws a stick of dynamite into Alec’s boat because if you’re going to do a thing, do it right.

Alec flips himself into the water next to the exploding boat, but the six inches of water separating Alec from the boat shields him from the blast and debris. Yeah, son! Alec then floats to the bottom of the swamp, which is mostly comprised of mutagen at this point. Instead of killing him, the helper vines insert themselves into Alec’s body and face like the aliens did to Fox Mulder in season eight of the X-Files.

Abby comes to investigate. She follows the fire from the explosion until it disappears and then reappears. I’m not sure if this is supposed to be an effect or if it’s season eight Game of Thrones editing. The vines are not so nice to Abby. They start their death march towards her. But, then they stop. An arm shoots out of the water. Abby is scared, but keeps looking. Alec is dead. But Swamp Thing (Derek Mears) is born! Mutagen is cool again!

I took a clear shot at the premiere episode of Swamp Thing because it was not particularly good at world building. If your plot is going to be this thin, you need to do more to set things up for the season. The atmosphere was good. Swamp Thing’s birth was okay. Alec’s death was ridiculous. The pilot tried so desperately hard to set Abby up as hardcore that they forgot to really fill in her character. It was eerily like any DCEU movie. Let the character scenes reveal her strength. Don’t have the character make a short, flat speech.

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Still, I can’t wait for the next episode. I think this is mostly because I’m expecting the story to get fleshed out and spread like the codependent vines of the pilot. Does Swamp Thing control the vines? Will he cure the spread of the swamp disease? What are the circumstances around Abby and Maria’s daughter? So many questions. If the pilot did one thing, it peaked interest in next week’s episode. So, mission accomplished?

What did you think of the pilot episode of Swamp Thing? Will you be tuning in every week? Let’s discuss in the comments!