With the new Defenders series hitting Netflix soon I think it’s best to revisit the origins of the group.
The Defenders in Netflix’s show may be more down-to-Earth then their Avenger counterparts. But in the comics The Defenders began with some pretty out of this world members. It originally began with the Sub-Mariner, Dr. Strange and the Hulk. This first issue was released in December 1971.
Dr.Strange discovers that a machine of terrible power has been created meant to destroy the world (go figure…). So he enables the help of the Sub-Mariner and Hulk in order to infiltrate the bad guys base and disable the machine.
The machine is technically not disabled, but through some manipulation of time is made mostly harmless.
This book is one of the better stories I have read from an older time period. The inclusion of Strange and the Sub-Mariner also gives a little more to the plot. I also like the art in this issue as well. Hulk of course does not play nice with others and takes some convincing, but ultimately becomes a founding member of The Defenders.
Hulk was also a founding member of The Avengers, but did leave in issue #2. In keeping with that, Hulk pretty much abandons the Defenders the second it’s named. He does become a significant returning member in later issues though.
This issue not only marks the beginning of the Defenders but also the Marvel Feature lineup which lasted 12 issues. It is from this lineup that the Defenders comics splintered off from.
This issue also includes a new Dr.Strange solo story. I believe it was meant to “reboot” or reintroduce him back into the public eye after a short hiatus.
As of this writing the issue is fairly popular. A decent copy goes for around $100-150 to as high as $400. I managed to snag mine for $50, though it is a bit beat up.
In my mind it’s worth it. To own a copy of Avengers #1 is easily in the thousands of dollars. At least with this issue of The Defenders, where Hulk is a founding member, the issue is affordable.
The Hulk’s latest animated outing falls flat, but makes up for it with character development that hints at the Hulk’s big screen future.
**Warning – slight spoilers ahead***
While we Hulk fans wait patiently for Thor:Ragnarok to hit theatres, we hoped to satisfy ourselves with this newest animated feature made under the Marvel/Disney umbrella. And in some ways it did, but mostly it showed how differently Disney is pulling the strings now.
Since the earliest reports this was being made I was put under the impression this film would be “more adult” and even had it compared to Batman’s ‘The Killing Joke’ animated film. The final product barely sneezed in that direction. This film could easily be described as a Halloween gimmick meant to promote both the new Dr.Strange film and keep kids interested in the Hulk until Ragnarok releases.
The animation was passable and the story was cliche. This basically felt like something that could fit into the Hulk and Agents of SMASH series. Which may be what they wanted. The Hulk in this is a chatterbox and seems more annoyed then angry most of the time. Strange reminded me of his character from the 90’s Hulk cartoon series, so no complaints there. The Howling Commandos were slightly interesting, but we received very little back story on them. The zombie guy was probably the creepiest (and I’m stretching that term) and is most likely the closest to a ‘mature theme’ in this story.
I won’t delve into the stories details; I found it boring for the most part. The main villain in this is Nightmare who offers very little to the plot.
Now I will give it credit where credit is due. At times the Hulk’s fighting scenes are fun to watch. I always enjoy seeing him smash things. But what caught my attention is how they are transitioning and changing the rules slightly on how Banner and Hulk work together. It seems Banner has control of Hulk and can change at will. Hulk is still no fan of Banner though. But near the end it does seem like the two are beginning to work as a team more. Also the stories ability to incorporate Banner into more of it hints at ways Marvel might utilize Mark Ruffalo on screen for future Hulk films.
This was obviously a film with influence from Disney, as previous animated films like ‘Planet Hulk’ or ‘Hulk Vs.’ were much, much better in my opinion.
My final thoughts are as follows. This film is great for kids and young children as a Halloween family film. For adults it is definitely lacking. I would recommend this as a rent not a buy (Which Marvel seems aware of since its only available for digital download at the time of this writing). This is a perfect film to watch while counting candy on Halloween night.
Hulk’s newest animated film is arriving this month on October 21st for Digital HD. Blu-Ray/DVD release not confirmed at this time.
Nightmare is manipulating Hulk while Dr. Strange fights to contain the Hulk’s rampage. Be prepared for a dream dimension full of people captured by Nightmare and transformed into monsters. With the aide of the Howling Commandos, Dr.Strange will attempt to thwart Nightmare’s plan to cross to the waking side and bring a host of creatures borne of darkness.
The film will run 70-75 minutes long. Marvel has even released a clip of the new movie. Check it out below. Sadly though the animation reminds me more of a television show then a feature length animated film. Clearly that while Marvel may rule the roost in terms of films, DC is still king of animated features. Which is a shame. But we Hulk fans will take what we can get.
In any case I am excited for a new Hulk movie, even if it’s animated. And a Halloween themed story makes it even better. Hulk versus a bunch of monsters? Yes please!
Given the lack of news I was beginning to think the Hulk’s new animated film ‘Hulk: Where Monsters Dwell’ was merely rumor.
But finally some concrete evidence of the film is coming to light, in the best way possible…a premier!
‘Where Monsters Dwell’ is scheduled, courtesy of Marvel Animation, for a special viewing at NYCC on October 9th from 10:30 am to 12.
The film is being described as “spooky, action packed” and “family friendly”. So as I expected they are probably going the monster route in response to Halloween right around the corner. But the family friendly part is bit off-putting considering previous information described the film as more “adult oriented”. So I’m not sure where it sits in terms of content.
The news has also re-confirmed the inclusion of Dr. Strange and the Howling Commandos. In addition it has been mentioned they will be battling the supervillain Nightmare (shown below).Given the amount of time for the viewing one can assume the film will be anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes along.
This news has me slightly confused as to the tone of this film, but nonetheless I am very excited. Hopefully they will announce a release date after the premier. Perhaps even a teaser trailer. TRICK-OR-TREAT!!!
For additional info see my first post regarding the film HERE.
For the report this information comes from see HERE.
San Diego Comic Con is over but it has left us with plenty to be excited about. In addition to the super sweet Gladiator armor for the Hulk (to be featured in Thor: Ragnarok) seems a new animated Hulk movie has been announced.
Due to arrive in Fall of this year, ‘Hulk: Where Monsters Dwell’ is to feature our green goliath co-starring alongside Dr. Strange. No doubt in order to drum up excitement for the new Dr. Strange movie starring Benedict Cumberbatch. Given the film is releasing in November I am going to predict ‘Monsters Dwell’ will release in October to coincide with the Halloween season.
The Howling Commandos of S.H.I.E.L.D.
To further support my prediction, Strange and Hulk will be joined by the Howling Commandos. This name is attributed to a few military groups within the Marvel Universe. Most notably they were featured more or less in the first Captain America movie. However,the report given on this film details the words “monster team”. So I am assuming its the more ferocious team shown here.
If this wasn’t exciting enough it’s been promised this film will be more “adult-oriented”. In such the way it is being compared to DC’s soon to be released “Batman: The Killing Joke” movie. This alone is great because after having to deal with the absurdity that was the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. I am so ready for Hulk to go nuts!
With all this said I think we Hulk fans have something to look forward to. I know I’m excited and I’m ready to get SMASHED!
Latest Update – RELEASE DATE AND SNEAK PEEK – 10/10/16 (first released clip)
PREMIER ANNOUNCED – 9/13/16
To see the full report go here. http://www.newsarama.com/30366-marvel-s-secret-wars-gets-animated.html