Marvel’s latest event continues. This week, the crossover into the Hulk’s regular title wrapped up. I’m now very curious about issue 111, which is due on shelves before World War Hulk is finished, but which is not listed as a crossover. If it still has the World War Hulk banner on it, I’ll review it as an individual issue.
Title: Incredible Hulk #106-110
Author: Greg Pack
Illustrator(s): Issues 106 and 107 pencilled by Gary Frank and inked by Jon Sibal. Issue 108 pencilled by Leonard Kirk and inked by Scott Hanna. Issues 109 and 110 pencilled by Carlo Pagulayan and inked by Jeffrey Huet. All issues coloured by Chris Sotomayor.
Original Publication Date: These issues cover dated July through November 2007.
Cover Price: All issues cover priced $2.99 US, or $3.75 Canadian.
The Hulk is coming back to Earth to do some major smashing. Amadeus Cho, the seventh smartest person on the planet, is gathering those who would help the Hulk in the coming conflict. They eventually meet, and don’t get the reception they’d expected.
The character interactions. If Marvel plans to publish a “Renegades” team book when the dust settles, I’m in. Here’s a sample conversation within the “team:”
Namora: Your “heroes” massacred his people, Angel. He should slit them gullet to groin and ring the city with their spiked heads.
Angel: Okay, Namora, don’t take this the wrong way, but every time you open your mouth, you totally freak me out.
Hercules: Lighten thyself up, Angel. We’re the renegades now. Talking trash is practically a requirement of the job.
Angel: Fine. I just want to make sure we all know that eviscerating people for whatever reason is a very bad thing.
Hercules: Aye, that it is. In this millenium, anyway.
The She-Hulk and Doc Samson plot threads set up in the first issue were dropped here. We’ve seen what happened with She-Hulk in the main event, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Doc Samson is picked up there, too, but it makes this set feel sloppy as anything but a companion piece.
The originality of this feels limited. The major new pushes are being made in World War Hulk, leaving only the formation of the Renegades as the new ground being broken here. I give it 4 out of 6.
The artwork is surprisingly consistent, given the number of art team changes. While there is no question that the art teams are changing, the styles are similar enough that it’s not jarring. Fortunately, the art is all good, too. You need detailed art when you’ve got a character like Cho, who tracks every possible detail. These teams all deliver. I give it 4 out of 6.
The story is incomplete, as it is a companion piece to a larger story. It’s well done, and fits the larger story very well, seemingly laying the groundwork for the Hulk’s next status quo. It serves that job well, and is definitely an interesting read, but don’t read it if you’re not reading the main event. (Of course, the number of people interested in reading Incredible Hulk but not World War Hulk are few, and they will likely either skip these issues or just grin and bear it until the crossover is over.) Given the close connection between this and the main event, I won’t hold that against this title. I give it 5 out of 6.
The characterization of the Renegades in particular is both interesting and fun. Every character has a distinctive voice, and Cho is a potentially compelling team leader. We even get a little more depth to the Hulk, tying up some loose ends that have been dangling irritatingly since Incredible Hulk #1 hit the stands in 1962 lo those 45 years ago. I give it 5 out of 6.
The emotional response is good, as it not only held my interest for this story, but made me want to read more of World War Hulk and of the Renegades. I give it 5 out of 6.
The flow jars a little but after issue 106, since the main plot lines in that issue were just summarily dropped. Otherwise, it holds up, even with the changing art teams. I give it 4 out of 6.
Overall, it’s definitely worth reading if you’re reading the main event, but easy to pass on if you’re not. I give it 4 out of 6.
In total, Incredible Hulk #106-110 receive 31 out of 42.
World War Hulk Review Checklist
- World War Hulk Prologue: World Breaker
- World War Hulk 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, complete
- Incredible Hulk #106-110
- World War Hulk: X-Men #1-3
- World War Hulk: Frontline #1-6
- Iron Man #19-20
- Avengers: The Initiative #4-5
- The Irredeemable Ant-Man #10
- Heroes For Hire #11-15
- World War Hulk: Gamma Corps #1-4
- Ghost Rider #12-13
- Punisher War Journal #12