Hulk #1

HULK #1 (Marvel– Loeb / McGuinness) “Superstars JEPH LOEB and ED MCGUINNESS will change the way you see THE HULK! In this startling origin epic, the breathtaking events that ended World War Hulk rocket into this brand-new Hulk title. When one of The Hulk’s oldest cast members is murdered, everyone turns to the team of IRON MAN, SHE-HULK and LEONARD SAMSON to solve the grizzly case. All the evidence points to the Hulk as the killer—but {CLASSIFIED}! Join us for a brand–new story and a brand-new team who loves the Hulk as much as you do!”so sayeth Marvel.com.

Mr. Loeb starts this story off as a Gamma powered version of C.S.I. Doc Sampson starts wrapping his head around a fight where it looks as if the Hulk fought, shot, and killed the Abomination. Huh? the Abomination, really? You mean the same Abomination that, according to the solicitation for issue #3, the Hulk fights in a knock down drag out brawl? I’m guessing not.

Mr. Loeb nails the characterization of the long standing Hulk supporting cast with only a few inconsistencies. It has been established that Samson and She-Hulk don’t like each that plays out well. Doc Samson’s impulsively seemed to be a out of character for a psychologist with multiple MDs and PhDs. His willingness to blind-side the Red Guardian was pretty off base. Loeb hints at the idea that the Red Hulk may not be Bruce Banner, and if that’s the case then this is a re-hash of some late 80’s / early 90’s Hulk stories. I believe Jeph Loeb is a better writer than that, so we’ll have to wait and see how this plays out.

The art is puffed up and cartoony (think He-Man), but that is what McGuinness does. I know it turns off some fans because they want realism in their comics, but Hulk is a book where most the main characters are super-strong muscled people anyway. I have enjoyed McGuinness’s work in the past but now I’m starting to see that all his square-jawed hero man look very similar. Maybe tweaking the style a bit wouldn’t hurt.

I went into Hulk #1 with lots of reservation because of the lack-luster ending to World War Hulk. I’m happy to say that I’m interested in this new direction and I’m willing to give it a shot. But if we get to issue #5 and have yet to see any kind of movement on the story or have yet to see the new Hulk in action, I’ll be dropping this book faster than a sack of rabid weasels.

Grade: B

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Updated: December 6, 2010 — 10:10 pm

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