Daily Archives: March 27, 2009

What If?… #45 (1984) – The Review

What If?  #45

What If? #45

What if the Hulk went berserk?  Doesn’t the Hulk go berserk on a regular basis?  That’s like asking “What is Spiderman used sarcasm?”  That’s like asking “What if Wolverine had no memory of his origin?”  That’s like asking “What if Power Girl had huuuugge boobs?”  Hulk goes berserk – that’s what he does! 

The basis of this story replaces the regular origin of the Hulk with the scenario where Bruce is just a little too late in saving Rick Jones.  The Gamma-Bomb goes off a second earlier and BOTH Bruce and Rick are caught in the blast.  This, for some reason, makes Bruce still turn into the Hulk – but now Rick and the Hulk are psychically linked.  Rick is fine, mind you, no Hulk-outs – just linked to the Hulk.  So the Hulk knows when Rick is hurt – and the army does hurt him.  First they give him a shot – which he cried like a baby about – and then they electrocuted him to lure the Hulk back to the Army Base.  Well, it worked, the Hulk did come back – but only after they electrocuted Rick… to death.  Thunderbolt Ross feels bad – but Talbot is there to tell him that Jones was a casualty.  (What a softy) 

Without Rick in Hulk’s head all of a sudden the Hulk goes on a destruction bender!  He begins to throw missiles at the helicopters – and Ross decides that they need some outside help.  That means the FF comes in to help.  The Human Torch tries to take him out – but Hulk literally blows him out.  Like a candle.  It’s kind of awesome.  Hulk takes the FF on – but then when the Thing battles with the Hulk they land near a ICBM silo.  The missile goes off and out of the fire comes Bruce and Ben – IN HUMAN FORM! – But Bruce becomes the Hulk suddenly and snaps Ben’s neck.  The Human Torch comes blazing in – only to have the Hulk swat him away like a fly, killing him.  Iron Man and Thor come to help out.  Hulk destroy the circuits that keep Tony’s heart beating – and he dies.  Man, this is horrific!  Thor comes in to save the day.  They tussle for just a bit before Thor snaps the Hulk’s neck.  As the Hulk turns back into Banner, Thor gives him a honorable death and burns him up with lightning.  Ross tells Talbot that they have much to atone for.

It’s a pretty decent issue – but let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room – Thor snapping Hulk’s neck?  WTF?  While I am glad that they used Thor to beat him – because let’s be honest here – if someone is going to beat the Hulk it should be a god.  But man, it just seemed too easy!  Ridonkulous!  Ricockulous even!  Issue: C