In memory of Len Wein (1948-2017)
This is a rare and special comic, for multiple reasons. First, the obvious…this issue has the Incredible Hulk…and freaking BATMAN! Wow, what a combination. Second, this comic is HUGE! It is tabloid size. See the image for a comparison between it and a standard size comic.
This comic was released in September, 1981 as part of the DC special series (Vol.1 #27). Since I am not a DC fan (aside from Batman and a few other related characters) I don’t know all the details. This is the first crossover to feature Batman and the last of the huge tabloid size editions for many years.
Though the comic is typically referred to as ‘Batman vs The Incredible Hulk’ it’s true title is “The Monster and The Madman”. The story actually includes a lot of the Joker (in reference of the madman I assume).
The story is told in several chapters and despite being a Hulk/Batman crossover deals with the Joker a lot. He is, as expected, the prime instigator between Hulk and Batman. Actually the Joker steals the show for the most part, and along with another villain (Marvel-related I believe) he gains some trippy powers.
The story is written by Len Wein with art by Jose Luis Garcia Lopez. The art is not bad and does a good job of blending these two character’s worlds together. The story is actually really awesome in my opinion. In fact, its so highly praised its in the top 10 on goodreads.com. You can see my post on this here.
However, the story is probably more of a treat for Batman fans rather then Hulk fans. Hulk is a big part of the story, but he kind of gets upstaged by Batman who is then upstaged by Joker. It’s still worth the read. There is also the inclusion of various Batman and Hulk villains such as Abomination and Two-Face…well..sort of. In a way.
Overall its a fun story with some really cool art. I recommend grabbing it if you can. The original large tabloid version is kind of expensive, especially a good copy. However, there have been smaller subsequent versions released such as the gold collectors edition and an even smaller book. They tend to go for a lower price. It’s also available as a digital comic.
Current Ebay Prices:
Original Tabloid Edition (1981):
- $40-120 (10/12/17)
Collectors Edition (1995):
- $20-40 (10/12/17)