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"Fear of Flying"

(24 pages)
Writer: Rick Veitch
Artist(s): Rick Veitch, Alfredo Alcala
Colorist: Tatjana Wood
Letterer: John Costanza
Editor: Karen Berger
Swamp Thing Created by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson

Cover: Dave McKean (signed)


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The postcard picturing a plane stuck in a pyramid(6:3)was inspired from an actual postcard which Veitch received from journalist Jeet Heer while writing this issue. Veitch told me "There was no conscious cultural reference on my part. I just liked the synchronicity of it arriving at the right moment."

1:2 There was a series of four "Airport" films in the 1970's including "Airport", "Airport '75", "Airport '77" and "Airport '79" but no film titled "Airport IV".

1:5 The Persian Gulf Wars, invloving Iraq's struggle for land with Iran and Kuwait (with plenty of US involvement), have been flaring since the early 1980's.
The Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster occurred in the Ukraine in 1986, filling more than 14,000 square miles with deadly radiation.

3:1 The Sunderland Corporation was formerly run by the late General Avery Sunderland.

3:5 Link to 4:1 stomach churning/"sick"

4:1 Dogbum and his dog appeared in last issue.

4:2 In HELLBLAZER, Constantine's own series, it was being shown that he is haunted by those whose deaths he feels responsible for.

5:1 Does this license plate number mean something? It is not the same as the one shown on this car on page 2 of issue 74.

5:2 Roy Raymond and his assistant Lipchitz have been trapped in the limo driven by the Wild Thing (a failed attempt to create a new Swamp Thing) since issue 69.

5:3 Batman defended Gotham City against Swamp Thing in issue 53.

5:4 This is a slogan of the Greyhound bus company.

5:5 Raymond worked at Galaxy Broadcasting, as did Clark Kent, and appeared in Superman stories in the late 1970's and early 1980's.

6:1 Link from 5:6, "wrong limo"/"coincidence"

6:3 The reason birds can fly and we can't is simply that they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings. -"Peter Pan" by James M. Barrie

6:5 lllllll

9:2 Look closely at the wreckage and you'll see it was labeled as the JLA satellite, which was destroyed in Justice League of America #251 (1986). You can even see the famous round meeting table still mounted to the checkered floor. Lots of unlucky flying machines in this issue, no? Swamp Thing visited the satellite in issue #46, along with everyone and their brother during the CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS.

?:? President Reagan's helicopter really did have a near collision with a small plane near his ranch on August 14, 1987.

13:3 We saw Swampy hinting about the Sprout's hiding place (with the moon in the background) in last issue, page 23. The moon also appeared conspicuously on the cover of issue #69.

13:3 The Sprout is babbling about its encounter with Solomon Grundy in 67.

13:4 The Sprout is babbling about its encounter with Alan Bolland in 68.

14:3 Note the airline name. A "Monarch" butterfly was seen in a dream in last issue.

14:5 Most of the humans who have become an earth elemental or "Swamp Thing" have names similar to "Alec Holland". A fiery death is always involved, as Swampy first learned in issue #47.

PAGES 22-23:3 Joćo Paulo Cursino pointed out to me that the sound effects "SHLOEL BSSTTE TTLBN" sound like the artists names Bissette and Totleben. But who is Shloel?

COMMENT: Where is really the best place on a plane to survive a crash? Well, the airline companies probably wouldn't tell the public if they knew, because then everyone would rush to that spot in an emergency. Also, different planes have different structures, and the circumstances of the crash play a big role. Here's a website with some research on the topic, for what it's worth.

COMMENT: Carl Jung, Ming, Brenda, Rodney and the cave-painter first appeared in last issue.

COMMENT: In 2006, DC Comics collected issues 71-76 in the trade book "Swamp Thing: Spontaneous Generation".

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