"The Immortal Hulk #1" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Marvel Comics
Written by Al Ewing
Illustrated by Joe Bennett
Inked by Ruy Jose
Colored by Paul Mounts
Lettered by VC’s Cory Petit
2018, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on June 6th, 2018
Bruce Banner’s story has always been interesting. The mild mannered scientist holds a big rampaging green monster inside, unleashed whenever he loses his temper. Times have changed for Bruce. He’s all alone…well, except for that other guy inside. When Bruce is shot and killed during a gas station robbery, something else rises up from the coroner’s slab that evening to seek revenge, not only for Bruce, but for the little girl that was also gunned down.
The Immortal Hulk starts with a very somber and serious scene. I mean, how much more serious can you get when you kill a young girl within the first five pages? This instantly sets the tone for the series. Writer Al Ewing is pulling no punches. I like how it takes a swerve too. Right when you think Banner is going to transform and tear this thief apart, he gets shot right between his green eyes.
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That’s not to say that the Hulk doesn’t make his presence known. This is a colder, more calculating Hulk, not the rampaging beast we’ve seen in the past. He literally hunts down the murderer and the gang that led him to commit such a heinous crime and practically rips them limb from limb. Hulk doesn’t kill them, but does make sure that they’ll never do anything illegal ever again. Hell, they’ll definitely never walk right again, if at all.
The Hulk first appears like a serial killer in a horror movie. The lights go out. A scream is heard in the darkness. Then giant green hands burst through a wall to grab a terrified gang member. We don’t see the actual violence being doled out. Instead, we hear the horrendous attacks from afar. Screams interspersed with gunshots and loud “B-CHOOM” sounds. All the while, the murderer flees in terror and rightfully so.
This culminates in a sudden quiet moment. All of the sounds from the house stop and this guy turns around to see the Hulk towering over him. This is an awesome double-page spread from artist Joe Bennett. Veins bulge out of this monster as he stares down at the culprit. Hulk looks three times larger than the man, like he could grab him like King Kong snatched Fay Wray.
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This is immediately followed by another double-page spread and my personal favorite image of The Immortal Hulk #1. It’s a close-up shot of the Hulk as he delivers a three word sentence that carries so much weight. It underscores the horrors that await this murderer now that this beast has caught up with him. This is so very chilling. Colorist Paul Mounts emphasizes the whole thing as Hulk’s eyes glow a vibrant green, cutting through the dark shadows around him.
The Immortal Hulk presents the character as a big green spirit of vengeance. His human form may perish, but every night the monster will rise up to see justice served. To compare it to DC Comics for a second, it’s like if Solomon Grundy became the Spectre. This paints the Hulk in a more frightening light than ever before.