Once upon a time there was a comic book called Swamp Thing. Which had seen an enormously critically acclaimed run, written by Alan Moore, with Steve Bissette and Rick Veitch. Moore had moved on, and Veitch was now writing the comic book. He had picked up on one of Moore's threads, the possibility that Swamp Thing could use the Green to travel in time as well as space and had seen him emerge during important historical events.
This was to include Swamp Thing #88, in which Swamp Thing would meet Jesus Christ, portrayed as a white magician.
Despite being approved by editors and drawn by Michael Zulli, at the last minute, the comic story was cancelled by DC's publisher, Jenette Kahn. In protest, Veitch quit the comic, and swore never to work for DC again. Neil Gaiman and Jamie Delano who had planned to take over the book, dropped out in solidarity. There were simply no issues published until new writer Doug Wheeler was hired, taking the book in a different and pretty unmemorable direction.
So why are we talking about this particular Swamp Thing dead end?
The DC comic by Garth Ennis and Russ Braun, Six-Pack And Dogwelder, has given us an Afterbirthed John Constantine, who is reprising his role on Swamp Thing, teaching the muck monster about his lineage, his legacy, his heritage, his powers and his destiny.
Except he is doing it to Dogwelder, a character who welds dogs to people. And so we get to see all the Dogwelders who have ever been.
And as the comic goes back to his roots to an Egyptian curse placed upon his line by Anubis, we get a few more details, murmurs about those many, many lives.
Crown of thorns? Well, that would be the crown of thorned placed on Jesus's forehead as he carried his cross through the streets of Jerusalem to Golgotha.
And, it seems, where a Roman soldier version of Dogwelder, welded a dog to his face.
Swamp Thing never did that…
Six-Pack And Dogwelder: Hard-Travelin' Heroz #4 is published by DC Comics today.