"Reflections in a Golden Eye": In Metropolis, someone from the D.D.I reflects on how he has sent a man named Alan Bolland to drive a van rigged with explosives into the Galaxy Communications building in order to kill [[Morgan Edge (New Earth)|Morgan Ed
- I am willing to discuss... their needs... if they will consider mine. They call themselves... a parliament. Is there not a place here... for open debate?
- -- Swamp Thing
Appearing in "Reflections in a Golden Eye"
Synopsis for "Reflections in a Golden Eye"
In Metropolis, someone from the D.D.I reflects on how he has sent a man named Alan Bolland to drive a van rigged with explosives into the Galaxy Communications building in order to kill Morgan Edge.
In Houma, Louisiana, Abby Holland and Liz Tremayne decide to go for a walk to the post office, despite Liz's reticence, due to years of emotional abuse. Abby manages to get Liz to admit that she has romantic feelings for their mutual friend Chester Williams. Unfortunately, on the way to the post office, Liz is overcome by memories of her abuse, and has a panic attack on the street.
Elsewhere, Chester is accosted by a man called Lipchitz. He claims to have met Chester during Woodstock, and after offering Chester a hit of some strong reefer, he convinces him to have a meeting with TV celebrity Roy Raymond.
Abby forces Liz to continue on their way to the post office, despite her friend's obvious emotional fragility. After collecting her mail, Abby realizes that she has received several government cheques addressed to "Mrs. Matthew Cable." As she thinks about it, she is overwhelmed by thoughts of what Matt did, the D.D.I., and Matt's coma.
Swamp Thing travels to Brazil to speak with the Parliament of Trees in person. He is welcomed by the spirit of Alex Olsen, who speaks for the Parliament. Swamp Thing explains that after his recent battle with Solomon Grundy, he found himself trapped in his body, leading him to believe that the Parliament of Trees is trying to kill him. Olsen responds that the only end for elementals is to join the Parliament. Swamp Thing is not ready to join the others, as he still has strong ties to humans, particularly Abby. Olsen dismisses Swamp Thing's feelings, believing that humans are destroyers and polluters - mere animals.
As he drives his explosive payload toward the Galaxy Communications building, Alan Bolland sees Superman overhead, and gets spooked.
Over lunch with Roy Raymond and Lipchitz, Chester finds himself suspicious of their motives. They flatter him, applauding his efforts with his eco-group. Raymond claims that Chester's group is too low profile, and that it needs a symbol or mascot. Raymond suggests that the Swamp Thing should be that symbol, and that he should act as spokesperson for a line of products to be built around Raymond's show.
Swamp Thing demands to have an open debate with the other members of the Parliament, and meets with four others in a circle. In joining them, he learns about each one's past. He was once Alec Holland, a scientist; another was once a medicine woman thousands of years ago; another a union activist and wage slave in the 1920s, another a deformed native of Ireland in the second century; another a feared sorcerer in the court of the emperor of China during the third dynasty.
Despite having given up on his mission to destroy the Galaxy Communications building, and Morgan Edge along with it, Alan Bolland's fate is already sealed. The D.D.I. has added a precautionary measure to their plan, and when he turns off the van's engine, it explodes with him inside it.
Shaken, Abby walks out of the post office, seemingly oblivious to the fact that she left Liz behind. She sits down on a nearby bench, wondering if anyone can ever truly understand what she went through. She doesn't feel that the Swamp Thing can really relate to it. Suddenly, Abby senses Liz's hand on her shoulder, and realizes how short-sighted she'd been. Liz says, "All we have in common... is the horror." Sadly, Abby and Liz try to comfort each other.
Each of the members of the Parliament's council had been killed in fire, and risen later as a monster given name by those who feared them. Eventually, the Sprout appears, telling a similar story of how it had failed to merge with Solomon Grundy, and now seeks a new host.
Lipchitz and Raymond claim that they know that that Abby used to live in Chester's house, and they assume that he can use that as a way to get cozy with the Swamp Thing, so that he can be packaged for a buying public. Both men are obviously hoping to capitalize on the Swamp Thing's image. In response, Chester lies that he has never met Abby, but that he would sure like to get rich and hang out with famous rock stars. Disgusted, Roy Raymond orders Lipchitz to get rid of Chester. As he leaves, Chester congratulates himself on doing the right thing.
His van and his body in flames, Alan Bolland still lives, and drags himself from the rubble. He throws himself into a river, and as he does so, the Parliament of Trees senses his presence. They see how he is an evil, insane man, and question whether he is truly meant to be the next Swamp Thing.
Back in Houma, Chester reveals to Liz and Abby that he may have to disband the eco-group because he's run out of money. Liz offers some of the royalties from her book, but Chester refuses to accept it. Abby decides to give Chester her government cheques, knowing that they come from the D.D.I. because of Matt's previous employment there. Reluctantly Chester takes the money, which comes to nearly two thousand dollars. Abby explains that the money has no meaning for her, and certainly no more meaning than the opportunity to be with two of her best friends.
- This issue is reprinted in the Swamp Thing: Regenesis trade paperback.
- First appearance of Bog Venus, Ghost Hiding in the Rushes, Kettle Hole Devil and Saint Columba as individual entities. They all appeared as part of the Parliament of Trees in Swamp Thing (Volume 2) #47.
- Abby begins receiving benefit checks on behalf of Matt Cable beginning with this issue. She receives her final check in Swamp Thing (Volume 2) #83.
- The character named Alan Bolland is a thinly veiled reference to the creators of Batman: The Killing Joke, Brian Bolland and Alan Moore, who was also the previous writer on the Swamp Thing book.
- Chester Williams is reading "POW," the pop-psychology book featured in Swamp Thing (Volume 2) #66 by Roger Huntoon.
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- Cover gallery for the Swamp Thing series
- Swamp Thing (Volume 1)
- Swamp Thing (Volume 2)
- Swamp Thing (Volume 3)
- Swamp Thing (Volume 4)
- Swamp Thing (Volume 5)