A minor problem, get it.

§ June 7th, 2018 § Filed under hulk, this week's comics § 2 Comments


MILD SPOILERS AHEAD:

A couple of things about this comic:

  • Of the new Marvel first issues that came out this week, this seems to be the one of choice, outselling Deadpool (surprising), Doctor Strange (not so surprising) and Ant-Man and the Wasp (both of ’em, the mini-series and the Living Legends one-shot, inexplicably released in the same week and not confusing to my customers at all). I mean, that’s good, as Hulk’s sales have been fairly moribund of late and maybe the sorta “back to basics” nature of the new title may encourage readership.
  • I suppose “back to basics” isn’t really the right term, here, as there’s been a pretty major change to the status quo of the character: as I understand it (having not read that Avengers issue that originally establishes this new twist) Bruce Banner can be seemingly killed, but owing to the nature of the Hulk side of him, he can be revived from whatever damage was dealt. You know, hence the title “The Immortal Hulk,” I guess. It reminds me a bit of Peter David and Dale Keown’s Hulk: The End one-shot from a number of years ago, where an ancient Bruce is desperately trying to die, while the Hulk refused to let that happen, and struggles to survive.

    Anyway, it is back to basics in that we’ve returned to Banner turning into a more articulate Hulk (as he was in the early issues), a transformation triggered by sundown (also from the early issues), as well as a simplicity to the story. Not continuity heavy, not dependent on any of the larger Marvel Universe hoohar, a more-or-less done-in-one issue that establishes the premise and shows us what to expect tone-wise from this series.

    Speaking of which, this is much edgier than your standard Hulk book…to the point where I’m concerned about having to explain to parents that maybe this, a Hulk comic for pete’s sake, isn’t appropriate for kids. There’s some pretty harsh stuff in here, such as that opening act of violence that triggers the plot, as well as what I believe is only the second use of the word “asshole” in a not-explicitly-mature-readers superhero comic (after an appearance in DC’s Final Crisis #1). Certainly I think the first in a Marvel comic (again, from the standard superhero line, not like the Max books or anything), which especially surprises because I seem to recall a time where “hell” and “damn” were verboten in Marvel books. At any rate, at a time when kids are particularly interested in reading Hulk comics, thanks to the movies, something like this can be a minor problem. Already went over it with some parents n Wednesday, looking to buy ’em for their funnybook-demandin’ offspring.

  • Should note that I’m not a big fan of the two-page splashes, especially in current comics where there is an increasing shortage of storytelling space. However, in this issue, there are two two-page splashes in a row, as a payoff to the anticipation building throughout the issue, and they were very effective and welcome in this particular story. They had a way of really putting the reader inside the story, making you wonder what it would be like jn that position, with that POV, while establishing the sheer immensity of the very thing I’m very coyly not specifying by name but you can probably guess. (This week’s issue of Batman (#48) also had a nicely-used two-page image.)
  • Oh, and it was a good comic, too. Did I mention that? It was quite well-done, effectively creepy and suspenseful…just maybe keep it out of Little Billy’s hands ’til he’s a bit older.

2 Responses to “A minor problem, get it.”

  • Adam Farrar says:

    I completely agree about it being a good comic and the effectiveness of the double-page spreads at letting the menace leap out at the reader. But that “asshole” stopped me in the tracks and I flipped back to the cover to see if there was any kind of warning but there was only “Teen+.”

    I loved the title being a reference the very first cover.

    I bought the two Avengers issues that set this up (and only those two). The first was a rundown of all the times he died and came back. The second was Banner thanking Hawkeye for trying to kill him (as he had apparently previously asked him to) and then setting off to wander the world again. Not really essential but I’m a completionist when I care.

  • T says:

    Then again, Bruce Banner himself uses the “a” word in INFINITY WAR, and no one appears to be complaining.

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