I Am Alec
Swamp Thing’s recent cancellation announcement caught a lot of people off-guard, myself included. Infact I was sat in the office reading the latest TV news and as this came up I genuinely asked a colleague, “Is this a joke?”. After reading a little more into the production situation, including creative clashes (Swamp Thing was originally going to be a weekly procedural?!) and heavy budget issues, Swamp Thing’s tale off-screen is as tumultuous and dramatic as it is on-screen. Perhaps its no surprise then that this one received the chop.
We return this week to see the swamp creature and Susie appear to be inexplicably linked together. Abby has a nightmare, flashes of a dead body in her mind’s eye, and after pleading with the police to search the swamps, she returns home to deliberate over what to do next. She speaks to her father, whom she hasn’t seen for 14 years and their reunion is a little awkward. He apologizes to her for stirring up old emotions before asking about Alec Holland, probing him over giving her access to his lab.
Unable to deal with the grief, Maria heads to Madame Xanadu’s house and after some tribal chanting, she touches Maria’s hand and sees the watery, grey corpse of her daughter. She screams, thrown back across the room which consequently knocks Maria down too. “There’s been a shift between darkness and light,” she says wide-eyed before regaining her composure and allowing Maria to digest what she’s just heard.
With Susie escaping from her room, Abby finds out about it via text while investigating Alec a little further. She ends up watching some videos about him on a colleague’s work computer before racing after Susie, whose hidden out on a boat in the swamp. It’s at this point that we learn through Jason that an accelerant was put in the water to speed up the growth of plant life. After discrediting the idea this is behind the rapid plant growth, we return to the swamp.
The police officer driving the boat down the river is stopped by some men who appear and stab him. Seizing the boat for themselves, they drive off, unbeknownst to them that Susie is hiding on-board. Abby then arrives on the scene and tends to the wounded officer while the other races after the boat down the river. A dramatic finale then ensues, which sees the swamp creature appear again and wreak havoc. With the passage then safe for Susie, it leaves just as Abby shows up and comforts her. They discuss the swamp creature together and Susie reveals to her that its name is Alec.
Once again Swamp Thing delivers a solid episode. While there aren’t that many action-packed moments like the first episode, the constant feeling of dread and the tension hanging over large portions of this one really do well to reinforce the horror. The investigation into the swamp creature is well paced, full of mystery and the teasing tidbits of information we’re given feels just right to keep us guessing. With Susie’s link becoming more obvious and Abby now aware that the swamp creature could be Alec himself, it’s still anyone’s guess which direction this is going in. As long as it’s not a weekly procedural, Swamp Thing should be able to maintain this level of excellency through its singular season. Let’s just hope this one doesn’t end on a cliffhanger.
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