Immortal Hulk #2 Review

Yet again Al Ewing and Joe Bennet deliver with an awesome Hulk installment. We find ourselves following Bruce Banner as he investigates a series of deaths all seemingly connected. Meanwhile the Hulk lurks in the back of his mind, waiting for night (or death) to come.

What I truly love so far is that this story, much like the last, is truly its own self contained story. No guest characters, no references to other story lines, no fluff. Just a simple (hard hitting) story of a man, a monster…and a Hulk. So far each issue has read like a mini-novella horror mystery series.

The art  by Joe Bennet continues to be amazing and really drive home the emotion of all the characters.  Alex Ross also offers another sweet piece of cover art for this issue. Reminds me of those pulpy horror story covers on older books and magazines.

This is a very different Hulk story then in previous years. This is not a superhero story…this even ain’t quite an anti-hero story. Its a tale of a monster bringing justice on other monsters.

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What’s also interesting about this series so far is you never actually quite see the Hulk “SMASH” anything. You always see the lead up to it and the aftermath. But never the event itself. We have seen the Hulk destroy stuff plenty in the past. What’s new here is his motivations for smashing are the focus. Why he does it is what’s interesting. There’s no need here to see someone punched into oblivion. What’s important is to know why…and to see the results of a vengeful Hulk.

Brilliant work. Can’t wait for next month!

 

 

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Ultimate Hulk #055 Heroclix

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This is the Ultimate Hulk of the Avengers Heroclix set.

Of all the Hulk Heroclixes I’ve seen, this is probably one of the best out there. The only competitor that comes to my mind is the Red Hulk figure released as part of a Spiderman set.

The sculpting on this is truly amazing. Incredibly detailed. The pose is almost exactly like the panel from the Ultimates comic. The paint job is also above and beyond other figures.

This version of the Hulk is truly blood thirsty, angry as hell and incredibly horny. You have been warned! He hails from the now extinct Ultimate universe.

This is a rare figure to find, but if you do I highly recommend grabbing it. That being said the price for it on ebay is around $10 as of this writing.

The Immortal Hulk #1 Review

Immortal-Hulk-1-CoverThe Hulk is back…and he will find you.

On June 6th the first issue of Immortal Hulk hit shelves and boy has it sold fast. As of today all first printings are sold out and second printings will be arriving in July.

I am honestly not surprised as this is probably the best Hulk comic, let alone comic, I have read in quite some time.

Now it could be I’m biased and just having the original Hulk back is swaying my opinion. But honestly the writing and art direction came together perfectly to reintroduce this well-known character in a way we have not seen in quite some time…if at all.

The story is simple, but packs quite a punch. It holds nothing back as it establishes this is not a typical superhero story. The art captures the emotion of all the scenes and especially brings a chill down your spine once green skin (and eyes) begin showing in each panel.

Bruce Banner plays a very small part in this issue, but his actions establish the “rules” and expectations of what we can see with Hulk and Bruce going forward. The Hulk really is front and center. Quite literally too. His words and actions really show you he means business. He is a combination of Liam Neeson from Taken, The Hulk, and a dash of Ghost Rider. He will find you…and he will Kill you. Well maybe not kill you. I respect that the writers still maintained that Hulk is not a killer. But he will smash you and make you wish you were dead.

And I am not kidding about the Ghost Rider part. Hulk almost has a judge and jury vibe about him. Like he can see (or smell) your soul and make judgements on you prior to letting out the SMASH. Which honestly is very chilling. You are a bad guy doing your evil deeds and with no warning a green rage monster slams into your house. Knows your deeds. Makes you face them, leading to crushing your soul. And then beats you to within an inch of your life.

The Hulk is no longer just reacting to people attacking him. He is now actively searching out people who have wronged him or others. I don’t know about you…but that’s terrifying. The Hulk is not trying to only hide or protect someone…he is now on the hunt.

This comic is an extremely promising start to a new era of the Hulk. I hope it maintains this appeal for the full run and explores some interesting ideas. If you loved the old Hulk, hate the Totally Awesome Hulk, or enjoy a good horror comic…then this is for you.

Welcome back mean green. We missed you.

 

 

Thor Vs. Hulk: Champions of the Universe – Review

Thor Vs. Hulk: CoU is a six issue series released in 2017 exclusively through Comixology (a digital comicbook store). Though I have heard it plans to release as a complete physical version at a later date.

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The premise is simple…pit Thor and Hulk against each other in a series of tests to find the strongest. This series actually has some fun with this and explores many facets of both characters and seeks to dig into what makes them tick. However, the way in which it’s done alongside some mediocre art lends itself to a somewhat less then impressive series.

Following on the heels of Thor: Ragnarok its a fun comic, but not nearly serious enough to gain my full attention. Something the movie did slightly better but had similar issues.

The story however is forgivable. My issue was primarily with the art style which seemed to change with each issue and go from pretty good to “meh”. In other words it was a bit too Saturday morning cartoon for me.

Also, I found the main bad “guy(s)” to be boring and trying too hard to be funny or self-aware. They never really made me feel like what Hulk and Thor were doing was really worth there’s or my time.

Overall, a fun comic but not much more then that.

 

 

Orange is the New Green: The Tremendous Trump

This is not specifically a Hulk thing and it is not my intention to ruffle any political feathers. But I felt I just had to make mention of this political parody comic.

I give you ‘The Tremendous Trump’ one-shot issue. Released October 11, 2017. For obvious reasons I think it can be seen why I wanted to feature this in a Hulk blog. To be quite frank this comic is not that funny, the story is flimsy and the art is random. STL050207

That being said it did give me a couple of chuckles. Mostly I just liked the homage cover and the blatant Hulk references throughout.

Despite your opinions on the current POTUS this comic does capture a certain point of view. I have always found political cartoons fascinating for their ability, in most cases, to capture the feelings of the public. I think this comic at least does that by incorporating some current perceptions on the media, social issues and political happenings.

Its almost like a time capsule of all the craziness going on nowadays. And whether you agree or not with it’s views you have to admit it is a perception going around.

A similar item came out awhile ago (from the same publisher actually) and I regret not buying it when I saw it. The item was a Trump vs Clinton adult coloring book which included a flip cover of Trump and Clinton fighting as Hulk and Wolverine from Incredible Hulk #181. It’s currently being sold on eBay around $40-90. So it obviously caught enough people’s attention.

So if you enjoy political satire or just like homage covers this comic may just be for you. Currently its in comic stores for about $5.00. And it might look good on the shelf next to Trump’s book ‘The Art of the Deal”.  🙂

“My comic is the best comic. Totally. A real win for the US of A. Period” – Trump

Batman Vs. The Incredible Hulk (aka The Monster and the Madman)

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.

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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.

batmanhulk1The 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.

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Gotta include the Batman slap 🙂

 

 

 

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)

 

 

Variant Alert: Marvel Legacy #1 (Mike McKone – Hulk)

Marvel has released its first issue of its new reboot and relaunch of the Marvel Universe, Legacy #1 (Sept 27, 2017).

While the issue has so far gotten mild to warm reviews saying its achieves the goals it set for itself, if in a bit of a bumpy way.

s-l1600My interest though is in this variant cover I discovered while browsing eBay. Seems artist Mike McKone has created a special Hulk variant cover for Legacy #1. Being sold by MyComicShop.com it’s AVAILABLE ONLY ON EBAY. You can’t even buy it from mycomicshop’s site.  As of this writing 1,800 have been sold and they are in limited availability according to the eBay listing.

As I have said before I am picky when it comes to variants. Doubly-so when people ask more then cover price for them. But this issue is currently going for around $6.00. For that price I am fine giving this my thumbs up…and my cash. My issue should be in my hands in a week or so.

The cover really does feature some very important characters who have been a big part of the jade giant’s Legacy in the Marvel Universe.

 

Most of these characters I am familiar with and its kinda cool seeing them all pictured together. You have (going from left to right): Red Hulk, Dr. Strange, Namor, Silver Surfer (I assume to reference Hulk being a founding member of the Defenders), Betty (Banner’s main love interest) and Thaddeus Ross (possibly his greatest enemy – pictured twice on the cover though…wink wink), The Triad (Glow, Guardian, and Goblin – protectors of Hulk’s mind), Hulk’s Warbound from Planet Hulk, Rick Jones (the Hulk’s best friend), She-Hulk (Banner’s cousin Jennifer Walters), and finally Amadeus Cho as the Totally Awesome Hulk (…you just had to include that eye sore…ugh).

That’s a pretty hefty group.

So this variant may not be a “must-have” for everyone who loves comics. But given the special significance to Hulk’s history this cover contains, and for the price, its a pretty cool bit of art for a Hulk fan.