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"Abandoned Houses"

(6 page prologue and 6 page epilogue, framing the 8 page story "Swamp Thing" reprinted from HOUSE OF SECRETS #92)
Writer: Alan Moore (framing sequence), Len Wein (reprinted segment from HOUSE OF SECRETS #92)
Artist(s): Ron Randall (framing sequence), Bernie Wrightson (reprinted segment from HOUSE OF SECRETS #92)
Colorist: Tatjana Wood
Letterer: John Costanza (framing sequence), ???? (reprinted segment from HOUSE OF SECRETS #92)
Editor: Karen Berger
Swamp Thing Created by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson

Cover: Steve Bissette and John Totleben (signed) An homage to the cover of HOUSE OF SECRETS #92 (shown below.)


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Comic book writer Louise Simonson posed for the drawings of Linda Olsen in HOUSE OF SECRETS #92. Read the Bernie Wrightson interview at

1:1 See notes on Cain and Abel.

4:3 Genesis 4:9

Then the Lord said to Cain, "Where is your brother Abel?" He said, "I do not know; am I my brother's keeper?"

4:5 Genesis 4:3-8

In the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground, and Abel for his part brought of the firstlings of his flock, their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering, but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.

The Lord said to Cain, "Why are you angry, and why has your countenance fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is lurking at the door; its desire is for you, but you must master it."

Cain said to his brother Abel, "Let us go out to the field." And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and killed him.


14:6 The caption and image of final panel (shown at right) of SAGA OF THE
#13 was an homage to the final panel of the first SWAMP THING story.

20:6 The crumbled paper looks like Swamp Thing's head.

We see the picture (Fuseli's "Nightmare") on Abby's bedroom wall again in issue #44.

Comment: Linda Olsen is seen with her husband in Heaven in issue #66 and gets reincarnated in #78.

Comment: The "sour time" that Cain and Abel foretell is seen at the end of the "American Gothic" storyline which concludes in issue #50. ST himself does not become aware of his predecessors until he meets the Parliament of Trees in issue #47.

COMMENT: This issue also contained three full page "pin-up" pictures. Click images above to enlarge.

COMMENT: This issue came about because the work on the "Rite of Spring" story (next issue ) was running late. In decades past, comic book publishers would make up for missed deadlines by substituting a reprint of an old story. These days, publishers often have new "filler" stories on hold for such a situation, so they don't have to resort to reprints. Actually, comic publishers have gotten to the point now where it seems they just ignore the deadlines and just ship out the books weeks (or even months!) late. Anyway, this reprint issue of SWAMP THING allowed Moore to incorporate the old DC horror hosts, Cain and Abel, into the mainstream DC universe of characters. Hence, this story partly inspired Neil Gaiman's SANDMAN series and its spin-off series THE DREAMING, featuring Cain and Abel. As editor Karen Berger said, "If Bissette had been on time, it never would have happened."

COMMENT: This issue is reprinted in black and white as ESSENTIAL VERTIGO: SWAMP THING #14, Dec. 1997.

COMMENT: In 1990, DC Comics collected/reprinted issues 28-34 and SWAMP THING ANNUAL #2 in a book titled "Swamp Thing: Love and Death". The Swamp Thing story from HOUSE OF SECRETS #92 is also reprinted in the DC trade paperback titled "Swamp Thing: Dark Genesis", along with the first several issues of the original series.

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