The latest Hulk book, The Incredible Hulk, has what I think is beautiful artwork by the well-known Marc Silvestri. His work in this one has echoes of old Bernie Wrightson when he used to mimic wood block printing in his illustrations for the classic Frankenstein story. Helping Marc more than I ever knew an artist to need help, the series also has a crap-ton of pencilers, pencil assists, finishers, inkers and a colorist! Whew! That’s a lot of people all working to make the finished art in this book look pretty raw, but still full of energy and inviting.

But what has equally kept me tuned into this book so far is the storyline. The writer, Jason Aaron, has done a pretty good job so far of separating the Hulk and the Banner characters, and of switching it so that Banner is much more the monster than his big green alter-ego. It’s as if without the Hulk for his anger management outlet, Bruce Banner has no alternative but to…well, become kind of a wacked-out, mad scientist a la Dr. Moreau. I’m not going to give too much away here, but we’re talking about stuff on the level of cats sleeping with dogs. Real Biblical-level shizzle!

Turns out that Dr. Banner can’t seem to fully let go of the huge green monkey on his shoulder that he’s been complaining about for the last several decades, and now he’s doing everything his demented mind can think of to bring the two of them back together. Meanwhile, the Hulkster seems to be getting along just fine without Bruce as he (sorta) enjoys his new-found family and his role as their protector and provider. Gee, I’d really hate to be Banner if he ever decided to mess around with the Hulk’s serenity…Oops! I may have said to much already. :-) forget you read that last part. Just go pick up the first and second issues of the Incredible Hulk and give it a try. You won’t be disappointed.

Later,

– M