May 29, 2023

Gabbing Geek

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Comic Review: Immortal Hulk Volume 6

The Hulk isn't trying to smash another monster or a villain. He's trying to smash a system.

Writer Al Ewing’s Immortal Hulk has taken the Green Goliath and made him into something very different than he has ever been before.

But then along comes an enemy the Hulk cannot simply smash the way he usually does in Volume 6, subtitled We Believe in Bruce Banner.

After taking over Shadow Base and all its resources, Bruce Banner and the Hulk make an announcement:  they are declaring war on the human race.  Oh, not people.  No, instead he’s out to get the system as a whole.  His enemy here is, though he never says it as such, is capitalism.  And his first target is Roxxon.

Ewing really has some fun with Roxxon.  Over in Thor’s book, the company’s current CEO Dario Agger was revealed to be a minotaur, and while that would suggest someone who may try to go toe-to-toe with the Jade Giant, that isn’t the case at all.  Agger doesn’t get his hands dirty.  Instead, he uses Roxxon itself to attack the Hulk in a manner of pure greed.  This Roxxon isn’t just an oil company.  No, it’s also company that appears to have a rightwing TV network called “Roxx News,” some very popular social media sites, and and a host of other platforms designed to maintain the status quo.

The thing is, Banner and the Hulk, becoming more and more two folks working off the same page, know how to attack that and aren’t interested in just smashing monsters.  No, he’s smashing other things, and that means Agger is going to have to find a Hulk of his own.

Ewing advances the plot here, but he warned:  this one ends at what feels like the halfway point.  Marvel had another character called the Hulk before this Hulk called Xemnu, and he just shows up at the end of the trade.  Roxxon can’t attack the Hulk directly.  He’s got an army of angry young followers across America, and he’s here to shake up the status quo.  But the status quo doesn’t like it when things try to knock it over.

Additionally, Ewing does check in with a few figures missing so far from his Hulk run.  The first is onetime Hulk Amadeus Cho.  But there’s some mention of some other Hulk personas that aren’t involved in whatever is going on, namely Green Scar/Worldbreaker and the Professor.  These were much more heroic Hulks.  Where are they?  Even Banner doesn’t seem to know.

But man, I sure do dig this series.  I just wish the volume didn’t end with what felt like the midway point.

9 out of 10 political references that probably won’t age well.

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