With Secret Wars in full swing I thought we’d focus on the two stories central to the Hulk universe and what it possibly means for the future of our jade hero. With all the reports and the many rumblings about Banner no longer carrying the mantle of the Hulk it’s interesting to see that we have so many stories that are centralized around gamma creations. Let’s be honest, it’s all sort of depressing to think that the hero we all love, getting the attention he deserves once again since the 80’s, is being treated so oddly by Marvel. I know we always need to look to the future and that everything changes but sometimes it’s reassuring to have things be the same. Hulk has always been Banner and there is something unsettling to think that it will no longer be that way.
We’ve been through this before though, when Banner was “cured” and Rick Jones suddenly became the Hulk! That didn’t last long… thank goodness. The confusing recent years where the Hulk had the unfortunate doppelgänger who wasn’t even given a proper identity lasted way TOO long. Now, the future looks… oddly uncertain. What is the going to happen? Will it be good? Is it going to affect anything long term? Marvel seems to be switching to a “Seasonal” approach to their comics and I don’t have all the answers – but I am uncertain if I even want to be on board. More on that in later posts… but first, What is going on right now?
Well, Planet Hulk is sort of a confused event as it is more “Island Hulk” or “Continent Hulk”? Of course, Marvel knew it would sell better if they cashed in on the nostalgia of the most recent well received Hulk story lines so hence, Planet Hulk. This story, though, revolves around Steve Rogers and his… ummm, partner of sorts, Devil Dinosaur. Not much really happens in the first issue other than setting up what the Hulk section of Battleworld is. They focus on the Thor Corps sending Rogers to the land of Hulks. That’s right – there is an entire land of Hulks. The better part of this series is the added Amazing Science #15 at the end where Cho and Banner give us a better idea of where this land of Hulks came from.
The one thing I can not recommend more is Future Imperfect written by Peter David. The story opens with Ruby finding Odin in the desert – saving him and taking him to the Dystopia. Janice makes an appearance and you are instantly sent back to 1992 and the brilliant groundwork laid by Peter David’s original story. I am not going to give away too much – Slider, a mind reader, reveals that Odin is not Odin and then a classic match up is set up for next issue. I really don’t want to sat more than – pick this up and read the hell out of this comic! So worth it!
The art is amazing, of course, with Greg Land at the helm. Make sure buy this – and then tell a friend! Maestro – is as mean as you remember:
Planet Hulk: B- / Future Imperfect: A