Writer: Al Ewing / Artist: Joe Bennet / Marvel
Welcome to Hell, where the Hulk spits philosophically and the residents are empty shells of people you once knew. In what is perhaps the best issue of The Immortal Hulk, Al Ewing is firing off on all cylinders as he depicts his version of gamma hell.
There’s a lot to unpack here, like the Hulk and Mcgee’s conversation, which happens to be my favorite part of this issue. I once wrote Mcgee off as another character who was crazy or obsessed with becoming as powerful as the Hulk. However, this issue has been enlightening if anything. Mcgee explains her reasoning for asking the big “How do I get to be what you are?” question she asked the Hulk in issue #5, and it’s actually pretty sound.
Not to say that wanting to become as monstrous as the Hulk isn’t crazy, but there is some logic behind how she sees the Hulk. It’s easy to write her off at first but when she presents her case about how the world basically rewards the Hulk’s anger, you can see her point. There is a lot of great subtexts here from Ewing about how the world treats men and women differently when it comes to expressing rage and frustration.
Ewing also takes the opportunity to define his version of hell, with a great amount of visual help from Joe Bennett. While Ewing sets the idea in place of the absence of God, God’s anger or “Hulk” in this case, as well as this space where devils roam, Bennett brings those ideas to life on the page. Bennett’s artwork rivals Ewing storytelling, where he is able to paint the desolate landscape of the hell the Hulk is walking through, as well as the empty shells and monsters that inhabit it.
I haven’t been this captivated by a Marvel series like this since Jason Aaron’s Thor run. Ewing evokes the same kind of style, expanding upon the concept of the Hulk and the themes that are associated with this character while bringing the Hulk into new territory. Eleven issues in, I can definitely tell you that The Immortal Hulk is a must read for those who want to see the Hulk like never before.
10 Indulged Angers out of 10
Reading The Immortal Hulk? Find BNP’s other reviews of the series here.
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