C2E2 2019: A SMASH-TASTIC Event!

I recently attended C2E2 and thankfully it turned out to be a much better visit then the previous year. I met some great (and legendary) artists and writers. I acquired some new Hulk swag for my collection. And I have the blisters to prove how much fun I had.

Jason Aaron and Marc Silvestri were in attendance. So of course I had to have them sign my copies of Incredible Hulk (vol.3) # 1 and 3 (I wasn’t a fan of the cover on issue #2). The cover on issue #3 has been a favorite of mine for a long time. The story was a bit rough around the edges for me, but I still enjoyed the idea of Bruce turning into a Dr. Moreau and the Hulk needing to stop him.

Ed McGuinness was again available this year. So I was focused on getting a graded signature from him. I managed to have him sign my copy of Hulk #30 (the compound Hulk issue) and his She-Hulk (181 homage) variant cover. In addition, I found he was selling an original splash page from Hulk #30 showing the entrance of Xemnu! Yes, it wasn’t exactly the Hulk, but it has the Red Hulk along the top.

And some of you may or may not know that Xemnu was the first Marvel character to have the name ‘Hulk’. So its a unique addition to my collection that expands on the history of the name, if not the character himself. In any case, I was just excited to own an original panel. The page was penciled by McGuiness and inked by Dexter Vines (sadly he cancelled at the last minute).

And last, but certainly not least – I got up early and waited in line three hours to meet the legendary George Perez (co-creator of The Maestro)!  I requested signatures on my hardcover copy of Hulk: The End (which features the Future Imperfect story line) and my copy of The Incredible Hulk: What Savage Beast (as he did the illustrations for the book).

I also snagged a selfie with the guy – such a nice man. I feel so incredibly lucky to have met him. This is his last year attending conventions, as he is retiring. So this was it or nothing!

In addition I snagged a couple rarer Hulk comics: a Fantastic Four variant exclusive to certain conventions and Incredible Hulk #166 (first appearance of Zzaxx).

All in all an amazing and productive weekend! Cannot wait till next year!

 

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Marvelocity: The Art of Alex Ross @ Dunn Museum 2019

On March 9th, 2019 the Dunn Museum in Libertyville, Illinois hosted the opening of an exhibition celebrating Marvelocity: The Art of Alex Ross.

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This was incredibly exciting to me as I’ve only recently discovered this man’s work through his covers on Immortal Hulk. Learning that he physically paints his work blew my mind so I knew I had to meet him. So, of course, once I learned this was happening I made a point to be there bright and early.

I arrived at the gallery at opening time and took my time in absorbing the works on display. It was an assortment of items ranging from complete paintings to drawn boards and even sculptures he helped make.

He even had childhood items on display showing his early love for comic books. Many of these items were featured in his book, Marvelocity – released late 2018.

Not too long after I got into line to meet Alex as he was doing a signing later in the day. Though I had to wait a few hours (mostly handled by watching ‘The Avengers’ on my iPad) it was worth it.

It was so great to meet this guy. I was admittedly a bit starstruck so I regret not having a clear head to ask for a photo with him. Nonetheless I received his signature on a number of items including the official Dunn museum Hulk poster for the event, the Marvelocity book, and my copy of Immortal Hulk #14 (which released earlier that week).

 

The work of Alex Ross is amazing and I hope to find another opportunity to see him again. His body of work is incredible and as an aspiring artist myself he is truly inspirational.

If you happen to live in the area or plan to visit I highly recommend you visit this exhibit. It will be active until September 8th, 2019.

For more information: https://www.lcfpd.org/museum/exhibitions/

 

 

In Memory of “The Man” – “The Legend” – “The Marvel.”

Stan Lee will be remembered as one of the great fathers of comic books. The characters he inspired are easily myths of the modern pantheon. His efforts as a writer, publisher and editor have changed the comic industry, not to mention the entire entertainment landscape, for all time. It is from what he started that we are given the gift of amazing stories and art work, from the world’s most talented people.

You will be sincerely missed.

STAN_LEE_RIP

Variant Alert: Hulk 2018 Variants

Well in terms of variants we have had a gamma bomb of them go off. Starting early February and ending in early March a steady stream of Hulk variant covers have been appearing on various other titles. List is below. Most likely to help usher in the return of the Incredible…err…Immortal Hulk.

I myself avoid most variants but on occasion a cover comes along I must have. Thankfully most of these sold for about $6 and they celebrate key moments in the Hulk’s past. So…I grabbed a few of them.  Some cause I loved the art, others cause I liked the artist.

In any case they have made me pumped for the return of mean green. GET SMASHED.

List of variants released. Bold items are ones I felt worth owning (pictures included below).

1.      ALL-NEW WOLVERINE by MIKE PERKINS
2.     AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #795 by DALE KEOWN
3.     AVENGERS #679 by RAMON PEREZ
4.     BLACK PANTHER #170 by ANNA RUD
5.     CAPTAIN AMERICA #698 by BILQUIS EVELY
6.     DAREDEVIL #598 by MARCO CHECCHETTO
7.     DEFENDERS #10 by STEPHANIE HANS
8.     DESPICABLE DEADPOOL #294 by DANIEL WARREN JOHNSON
9.     DOCTOR STRANGE #385 by MIKE DEODATO
10.   INCREDIBLE HULK #713 by JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHER
11.   INFINITY COUNTDOWN PRIME #1 by MARCOS MARTIN
12.   INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #597 by CHRIS STEVENS
13.   MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE #3 by MIKE HAWTHORNE
14.   MIGHTY THOR #704 by TYLER KIRKHAM
15.   OLD MAN HAWKEYE #2 by TERRY DODSON
16.   OLD MAN LOGAN #35 by STEVE MCNIVEN
17.   PETER PARKER: THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN #300 by DAVID NAKAYAMA
18.   ROGUE & GAMBIT #2 by MIKE MCKONE
19.   VENOM #161 by RON LIM
20.   X-MEN: GOLD #21 by ADI GRANOV

Disney Exclusive Planet Hulk (Marvel Select) (2017)

Attention Hulk fans…this is one figure you DO NOT want to miss out on.

Released in October 2017 is the Disney Store Exclusive Planet Hulk figure. And boy is he gorgeous.

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Admittedly I have not collected many Marvel Select figures, but this has got to be the best Marvel Select Hulk figure, if not the best general Marvel Select figure, ever. The attention to detail is amazing. The paint job is awesome (with some slight exceptions). The sculpting is almost spot-on as well.

 

It IS the definitive Planet Hulk (Green Scar) figure we have been waiting for. This makes the Marvel Legends Planet Hulk figure look like a cheap knock-off by comparison.
This figure looks like an almost exact copy to the Hulk in the comics. Some small design changes are present, but its amazing nonetheless. The sculpting is near perfect. My only gripe is the eyes. They seem a bit doe-eyed to me, but easily remedied by lowering his head down and letting the visor cover them. It’s really more bad-ass this way.

The paint job captures so many little details and really brings this character to life. Only in a few spots on the armor is it a bit sloppy.PH4

The figure’s armor is amazing. I especially love his silver plated arm, complete with spikes. The shield is thankfully included, along with an wicked axe! I think this is the first Hulk figure to include weapons or any sort of add-ons.

This figure is also huge! And heavy. He commands quite a presence when displayed. This does lead to my only other big issue which is the articulation. Due to his bulk and the armor he is limited in his movements. But the poses you can pull off are really cool. This Hulk is quite a display piece. From a distance it looks more like a statue rather then a “toy”.

This figure is only available from the Disney store for $30. So forget asking your local comic shop for it. If you are unlucky enough to not be near a Disney store you will have to shell out $45 or more on Ebay, but other options may exist.

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In short, if you are a Hulk fan…BUY THIS! You will be so happy with it guarding your comics.

Get Smashed!

 

Marvel’s Legacy is Incredible CRAP

If you are not aware Marvel is introducing a new  series called Legacy in order to “honor” the characters of the past with the use of their newer counterparts. 

I am not reading the other titles, but in the case of the Hulk they are crapping all over his legacy in my opinion. They have decided with the introduction of the TA (totally awesome) Hulk visiting the Planet Hulk storyline to renumber the issue and rename it Incredible Hulk 709. 


This is clearly another attempt to make this character “a thing”. Frankly I find this move confusing for any new Hulk fans coming onboard after seeing the Avengers movies. This is NOT THE SAME HULK. He is a poser.

I was willing to be ok with this new Hulk in operating under his own title, but for Marvel to come along and give him the moniker of “incredible” is a huge load of crap. 

They never tried doing this with the Red Hulk. I am not a huge fan of the Red Hulk but he is his own character. He operates fine on his own and was never used to muscle in one the original Hulks position. I actually enjoy the Red Hulk more then this TA Hulk. 

I am not reading the other titles with the new characters so I don’t know how they are ripping on their Legacy characters with this new series. But speaking as a Hulk fan I am truly disappointed with Marvel. Once again you have lost out on money from me.  I have since even given up on their new She-Hulk series. Seems the only good Hulk story is Old Man Logan at this time.

Get your act together Marvel. Seriously. 

Best Hulk Stories

Are you a new Hulk fan or possibly an old fan who has fallen out of touch with the character? Well I advise you to check out goodreads.com. It is a site dedicated to people who love books of all kinds. This includes comic books. They have assembled, by reader votes, a pretty accurate list of the best Hulk stories ever (well 78 stories to be exact).

The list does seem to sit in favor of the more recent books. Planet Hulk and World War Hulk are unsurprisingly holding strong at the top of this list. So if you think the older comics are not being represented I would understand that.

Still I recommend you peruse the list to see if there is a great story you may have missed. http://www.goodreads.com/list/show/16971.Best_of_the_Hulk

Here are the stories in the top 10:

  1. The Incredible Hulk: Planet Hulk by Greg Pak
  2. The Incredible Hulk: Future Imperfect by Peter David
  3. Hulk: The End by Peter David
  4. World War Hulk by Grek Pak
  5. Indestructible Hulk, Volume 1:  Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. by Mark Waid
  6. The Incredible Hulk Visionaries: Peter David, Vol. 1 by Peter David
  7. The Incredible Hulk Visionaries: Peter David, Vol. 2 by Peter David
  8. Batman vs The Incredible Hulk by Len Wein
  9. The Incredible Hulk, Volume 1: Return of the Monster by Bruce Jones
  10. The Incredible Hulk Visionaries: Peter David, Vol. 6 by Peter David

Get Smashed!