web site hit counter Marvel Masterworks: The Incredible Hulk, Vol. 1 - Ebooks PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

Marvel Masterworks: The Incredible Hulk, Vol. 1

Availability: Ready to download

The first six issues of Marvel Comics' The Incredible Hulk comic books are collected in this volume presented as a hardcover graphic novel. The first six issues of Marvel Comics' The Incredible Hulk comic books are collected in this volume presented as a hardcover graphic novel.


Compare

The first six issues of Marvel Comics' The Incredible Hulk comic books are collected in this volume presented as a hardcover graphic novel. The first six issues of Marvel Comics' The Incredible Hulk comic books are collected in this volume presented as a hardcover graphic novel.

30 review for Marvel Masterworks: The Incredible Hulk, Vol. 1

  1. 5 out of 5

    Aaron

    The original six-issue run of The Incredible Hulk from 1962, prior to its cancellation. Scientist Bruce Banner rescues teenager Rick Jones from the testing grounds of his gamma bomb, only to have it go off and transform him nightly into a gray (and then greenish beginning in issue 2) combination of Frankenstein's monster and Mr. Hyde. The Hulk goes up against several typically goofy science fiction and Communist enemies, but his primary antagonist is General Thunderbolt Ross, who hunts him obses The original six-issue run of The Incredible Hulk from 1962, prior to its cancellation. Scientist Bruce Banner rescues teenager Rick Jones from the testing grounds of his gamma bomb, only to have it go off and transform him nightly into a gray (and then greenish beginning in issue 2) combination of Frankenstein's monster and Mr. Hyde. The Hulk goes up against several typically goofy science fiction and Communist enemies, but his primary antagonist is General Thunderbolt Ross, who hunts him obsessively. While nostalgically enjoyable, I'm not that surprised this line was cancelled after six issues; the Hulk barely smashes anything and is constantly trapped by forces that seem dated today like magnetism and hypnotism. Eventually Rick Jones starts controlling his mind to force Hulk to only do good deeds, which seemed odd and a bit of a cheat. And then there's the Teen Brigade... Lee and Kirby clearly created a great character, but he wasn't yet being used properly. Most interesting to me was watching Lee struggle with shoehorning Banner's transformations back and forth into the stories. Banner began by transforming into the Hulk only at night, which clearly had limitations and only lasted three issues; the final three issues, Banner is able to use gamma rays to change back and forth at will, which also has problems. To make Hulk change back into Banner voluntarily, he was given some of Banner's intelligence which made him too much like Banner; later changes must have reversed this once the transformation was based on Banner's level of anger. The only notable story here aside from the origin is in issue three, where Hulk is lured to a rocket and shot into space, which was to be used again at least once more as the setup for Planet Hulk.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Natasha

    Kinda lacks the substance I prefer there to be in comics but Bruce is my favourite classic character so I still liked it purely for that.

  3. 4 out of 5

    David Dalton

    Yes these early Hulk stories are very corny and very simple. Yet, they represent the early tales of the Incredible Hulk! Most of the art is by Jack Kirby with Steve Ditko in issue #6, with stories by Stan Lee. Just think of these stories as Hulk 101, the early early years. Rick Joes was only 16 yrs old. Yet he seemed to have access to all areas of that Army base in the great Southwest. Simple stories and simple art. Almost no details. Sign of the times. Thanks to Comixology Unlimited I got a chanc Yes these early Hulk stories are very corny and very simple. Yet, they represent the early tales of the Incredible Hulk! Most of the art is by Jack Kirby with Steve Ditko in issue #6, with stories by Stan Lee. Just think of these stories as Hulk 101, the early early years. Rick Joes was only 16 yrs old. Yet he seemed to have access to all areas of that Army base in the great Southwest. Simple stories and simple art. Almost no details. Sign of the times. Thanks to Comixology Unlimited I got a chance to read these stories again, some for the first time.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Glen Engel-Cox

    This collection is the first series with the Hulk, which only ran for six issues. Many things are different here from what most people think of the character, including how Hulk is not as monosyllabic as he would later become or how Banner constructs a gamma ray machine that enables him to change back and forth at will (although how willing the Hulk is to do so is questionable, and the toll it takes on Banner to do so). What this start reveals, however, is how much debt the concept owed to Rober This collection is the first series with the Hulk, which only ran for six issues. Many things are different here from what most people think of the character, including how Hulk is not as monosyllabic as he would later become or how Banner constructs a gamma ray machine that enables him to change back and forth at will (although how willing the Hulk is to do so is questionable, and the toll it takes on Banner to do so). What this start reveals, however, is how much debt the concept owed to Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde, with Banner playing the good doctor and the Hulk as the raging monster. Yes, there’s a difference—Hulk never intentionally does bad things, although he destroys enough property. The side characters are there from the very beginning—Hulk/Banner’s military antagonist, General Thunderbolt Ross; the love interest, Betty Ross, the general’s daughter; and the kid sidekick, Rick Jones, ostensibly the one who got Banner in all this trouble in the first place. There’s very little realism in these comics. How can Banner create a hidden laboratory with machinery that can cage the Hulk when needed, not to mention power his gamma ray transformations. How Rick Jones is able to hang around a military facility—does he not have any school to attend, is there no security in this facility? The fact that Hulk is always letting Jones hang on to him and the fact that Jones is always hanging around Banner never clues either of the Ross kin into revealing that Banner and the Hulk are one and the same? Recommended only for those interested in the history of the character, as the plot, writing, and even art are fairly basic if not badly done.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    For the die-hard fans only. This is a nice hardcover collection of the Hulk`s beginnings. The stories are, by todays`s or even the 60s standards, cringe worthy. The art isn`t all that great, most of it is rushed. But, it did bring back some great childhood memories. I`ve always had a soft spot for the Hulk, after all, we are the same age, and we do share so many childhood memories together. This book was a must-have for me. For the die-hard fans only. This is a nice hardcover collection of the Hulk`s beginnings. The stories are, by todays`s or even the 60s standards, cringe worthy. The art isn`t all that great, most of it is rushed. But, it did bring back some great childhood memories. I`ve always had a soft spot for the Hulk, after all, we are the same age, and we do share so many childhood memories together. This book was a must-have for me.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

    Excellent hardcover edition of the first 6 Hulk issues. The story is a bit dated but the ferocity of the Hulk and the sympathy one feels for him over his plight is what makes the story enjoyable. The villains are also a bit stock and "cheesy" but overall a great comic collection with an infamous anti-hero of sorts Excellent hardcover edition of the first 6 Hulk issues. The story is a bit dated but the ferocity of the Hulk and the sympathy one feels for him over his plight is what makes the story enjoyable. The villains are also a bit stock and "cheesy" but overall a great comic collection with an infamous anti-hero of sorts

  7. 4 out of 5

    Philip Athans

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I had a blast reading this--enjoyed it even more than I thought I would. This is the first time I've read the original first Hulk comics and though (of course) I knew he was gray, not green, in issue #1, I had no idea that he didn't start out transforming when Bruce Banner got angry. At first, Banner transforms into the Hulk at night and returns to his human form in the morning. Then he builds a gamma ray machine that allows him to transform whenever he wants to, though it takes a toll on poor D I had a blast reading this--enjoyed it even more than I thought I would. This is the first time I've read the original first Hulk comics and though (of course) I knew he was gray, not green, in issue #1, I had no idea that he didn't start out transforming when Bruce Banner got angry. At first, Banner transforms into the Hulk at night and returns to his human form in the morning. Then he builds a gamma ray machine that allows him to transform whenever he wants to, though it takes a toll on poor Dr. Banner. There seems to be a hint about the whole "You wouldn't like me when I'm angry" thing at the very end of #6, but I'm not sure when that became the green guy's new normal. I was also charmed by the goofy Cold War stuff. At one point the Hulk squares off against a Soviet agent and his soldiers and after he disables their helicopter, the description reads: "But there is a limit to the frustrations which any men can endure--even Communists!" What the…? After that, the Hulk says, "I'm leavin' ya now… but if you're not on the way back to Vodkaland by the time I hit earth, I'll be back! And I won't be so easy on ya next time!" Okay… Cold War much? Loved it!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Samdenney

    The first 6 issues of The Incredible Hulk are, for my money, a cut above almost everything else I've read from this era of comics. The art is fairly typical of the period, but done so incredibly well that it stands head and shoulders above whatever you might care to compare it to. The action is brilliantly drawn, and puts many modern artists to shame. When rhe Hulk smashed a Jeep and bowled over a group of State Troopers in the early pages (in his original grey form!), I knew I was in for a trea The first 6 issues of The Incredible Hulk are, for my money, a cut above almost everything else I've read from this era of comics. The art is fairly typical of the period, but done so incredibly well that it stands head and shoulders above whatever you might care to compare it to. The action is brilliantly drawn, and puts many modern artists to shame. When rhe Hulk smashed a Jeep and bowled over a group of State Troopers in the early pages (in his original grey form!), I knew I was in for a treat. The writing, as ever, is a different matter. 1960s Stan Lee could create great characters and poignant moments like no other. Believable dialogue and gripping narratives, not so much. But that's not why we read old comics. We read them for the action, the wicked smash and crash of the sequence where the Hulk slaps a flying Human Cannonball vertically through a circus big top before punching out an elephant, or the issue where he catches a grenade and lets it explode harmlessly in his hand. We read them for the genius ideas, and here there be plenty. You can actually see the Hulk's abilities get tweaked and altered issue by issue. We see; a strong Hulk; a Hulk that changes only at night; a Hulk controlled by his spunky sidekick Rick Jones; the Hulk's body with Bruce Banner's mind; and even the Hulk's body with Bruce Banner's face (?!). Stan Lee and co let their imaginations run wild in the early days of Marvel superheroes, and the results are fun, clever, and hilarious (often all at once). We read them for the moments of poignancy. Like when the Hulk stares hatefully at an image of himself in issue #1, or when the Gargoyle weeps for his lost humanity. The whole concept of "the Hulk against mankind" is a fascinating one. And nowhere else but in comics will you see themes of isolation explored briefly before a swift cut to a hideous Toadman invasion in the very next frame. Many of the stories in this collection are smothered with a topical layer of anti-Communist sentiment that is both funny and frightening. Were people really so paranoid? We read them for the dialogue that's so ridiculour it comes right back round to fantastic again. General "Thunderbolt" Ross swearing to track the Hulk to the ends of the Earth at every opportunity is a personal favourite (spoiler alert - first 6 issues; the jolly green giant remains on the loose). And who can resist a line like "RELEASE THE JET-POWERED FACSIMILE OF THE HULK!"? In short, the Hulk's early escapades make the first days of other superheroes look dull. If you like great art, 60s cheese, and plain old-fashioned fun, do yourself a favour and check out this book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Evan Leach

    This book contains all six issues from the original run of The Incredible Hulk (May, 1962 to March, 1963). After six issues, the series was cancelled and the Hulk was limited to cameo appearances for about 18 months before getting a new feature of his own in 1964. Frankly, it’s not hard to see why this initial run was so short lived. The Hulk was very much a work in progress at this time, from the color of his skin: …to the cause of his transformation. Initially Doctor Banner turns into the Jade This book contains all six issues from the original run of The Incredible Hulk (May, 1962 to March, 1963). After six issues, the series was cancelled and the Hulk was limited to cameo appearances for about 18 months before getting a new feature of his own in 1964. Frankly, it’s not hard to see why this initial run was so short lived. The Hulk was very much a work in progress at this time, from the color of his skin: …to the cause of his transformation. Initially Doctor Banner turns into the Jade Giant when the sun goes down, sort of like a big green werewolf, before designing a machine that can turn him from Hulk to Banner, and vice versa. Nowhere is the “you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry” trigger to be found. In addition, the poor Hulk was saddled with a truly pitiful rogue’s gallery. When he’s not battling commies, the Hulk is saving humanity from horrors such as the Toad Men: …or the Gargoyle: All of the Marvel comics from the early ‘60s feel pretty dated. They were mostly intended for children, and generally tell simple stories where nobody gets seriously injured, or God forbid killed. The best of them are good, cheesy, nostalgic fun. The weaker ones are just silly, and unfortunately these six issues fall squarely in the second category. While it’s interesting to see how it all began for Dr. Banner, this first run was not very engaging. 2 stars, recommended for true die-hards only.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Michael P.

    Honestly, at best these primitive stories told with no sense of direction deserve two stars, but there is something fun about them despite Stan Lee thrashing about in his attempt to find out what kind of stories will work best for this character and what elements can sustain in the character's continuity. It is also interesting to see the Hulk as he later evolved in his fish-with-lungs state. These stories are hugely flawed, but are fun for a couple of the right reasons and several of the wrong Honestly, at best these primitive stories told with no sense of direction deserve two stars, but there is something fun about them despite Stan Lee thrashing about in his attempt to find out what kind of stories will work best for this character and what elements can sustain in the character's continuity. It is also interesting to see the Hulk as he later evolved in his fish-with-lungs state. These stories are hugely flawed, but are fun for a couple of the right reasons and several of the wrong ones.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rich Meyer

    If you can't afford the Marvel Masterworks, this is one of your budget alternatives. Mind you, a regular size paperback does not come close to doing justice to the artwork in these Tales to Astonish reprints. But it worked for us when we were kids. The first volume in this series reprints the first six issues of the original Incredible Hulk title, so that's worth a look too. If you can't afford the Marvel Masterworks, this is one of your budget alternatives. Mind you, a regular size paperback does not come close to doing justice to the artwork in these Tales to Astonish reprints. But it worked for us when we were kids. The first volume in this series reprints the first six issues of the original Incredible Hulk title, so that's worth a look too.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Nicholas Driscoll

    I was pretty disappointed in this book, which kind of surprised me after I really enjoyed the classic Spider-Man and Fantastic Four collections. This one, though, I felt has some major problems--weak writing, boring characters, and tons of inconsistencies. Basically Bruce Banner is a scientist who creates a gamma bomb and, when he tests his new invention, ends up getting hit by tons of gamma radiation when he saves the life of a dumb teen named Rick. After the accident, Banner turns into Hulk whe I was pretty disappointed in this book, which kind of surprised me after I really enjoyed the classic Spider-Man and Fantastic Four collections. This one, though, I felt has some major problems--weak writing, boring characters, and tons of inconsistencies. Basically Bruce Banner is a scientist who creates a gamma bomb and, when he tests his new invention, ends up getting hit by tons of gamma radiation when he saves the life of a dumb teen named Rick. After the accident, Banner turns into Hulk whenever night falls (NOT when he gets mad--that must come much later, and in fact there is a part in this first volume where Hulk gets mad and then changes into Banner!). Only Rick knows of Banner's double-life, and, as the story plays out, for a while Rick develops the power to command Hulk to do what he wants, and then later Banner develops the ability to change into Hulk and still retain some of his intelligence. They fight against a series of really forgettable foes--toad men from space, some reds from Russia wearing a robot suit as a trick, basically an alien version of Magneto but lamer. The storytelling is just all over the place. I didn't care much about any of the characters, who might have some pathos, but are not convincing or interesting. I always felt like something was missing. Plus massive and annoying plot holes abound, such as somehow Rick by himself fixing a super-powerful prison that can hold Hulk, or how sometimes Rick can contact Hulk through his mind and sometimes not, and so on. Hulk can talk throughout the comic, and also appears to fly (even if they call it jumping--but he can swerve sideways through the air). I kind of want to see how Hulk eventually develops that whole rage thing, but I am not sure I have the wherewithal to get that far!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Rojas

    Marvel Masterworks: The Incredible Hulk, Vol. 1 by Stan Lee is a great six comic books compilement of some of the first Incredible Hulk comics. These comics are well-known and action packed, filled with mysteries, heroes, and explosions. We start this book off with our simple yet intelligent scientist, Dr. Bruce Banner helping the American military create a very destructive bomb that would hopefully help them dominate the field. When Bruce notices a person parked near the bomb site, he runs out Marvel Masterworks: The Incredible Hulk, Vol. 1 by Stan Lee is a great six comic books compilement of some of the first Incredible Hulk comics. These comics are well-known and action packed, filled with mysteries, heroes, and explosions. We start this book off with our simple yet intelligent scientist, Dr. Bruce Banner helping the American military create a very destructive bomb that would hopefully help them dominate the field. When Bruce notices a person parked near the bomb site, he runs out to save them but as the general grows impatient and starts the bomb. Bruce is effected by the horrible gamma rays and becomes the incredible Hulk. Destroying things uncontrollably, the public begins to fear him and so Bruce decides to lock himself away every time he turns into the Hulk. Although seemingly like a monster, the Hulk sometimes unleashes his rage on the villains. From a person who has undergone an unwanted transformation and wants help from the Hulk to a group of aliens coming to destroy the Earth, and even a man that can bend metal with his powers. I don't want to spoil it all, but you need to read this. I reccomend this book to superhero and comic book lovers.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    Jack Kirby's Hulk is my favorite look for the character and all the art in this collection is a joy. There's one non-Kirby issue, but that was drawn by Steve Ditko, so it's great, too. What's interesting about these stories is seeing Kirby and Stan Lee figuring out how they want to handle the character. He's gray in the first issue, green in the rest, and Bruce Banner's transformations are triggered by everything EXCEPT his emotions. It starts as a nighttime change and by the end of the collectio Jack Kirby's Hulk is my favorite look for the character and all the art in this collection is a joy. There's one non-Kirby issue, but that was drawn by Steve Ditko, so it's great, too. What's interesting about these stories is seeing Kirby and Stan Lee figuring out how they want to handle the character. He's gray in the first issue, green in the rest, and Bruce Banner's transformations are triggered by everything EXCEPT his emotions. It starts as a nighttime change and by the end of the collection it's something that Banner and the Hulk control with a machine (although an unpredictable one that seems to be having a negative effect on them). There's also a weird issue or two where the Hulk is mind-controlled by Rick Jones. Looking forward to the next volume and seeing how long it takes to settle into a status quo for the series. It's all over the place in the beginning, but that's not a complaint.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Molly Lazer

    My four-year-olds became interested in the Hulk a while ago because he is big, green, and strong, so I got this Masterworks volume to read with them. Little did I know how close it was tone-wise to the current IMMORTAL HULK series I have been reading. I was shocked to see how horror-esque this comic is, and it is clear how Al Ewing's current work has been inspired by this 6-issue run. My kids liked these six issues because, as I mentioned, Hulk is big, green, and strong. I enjoyed it more than I My four-year-olds became interested in the Hulk a while ago because he is big, green, and strong, so I got this Masterworks volume to read with them. Little did I know how close it was tone-wise to the current IMMORTAL HULK series I have been reading. I was shocked to see how horror-esque this comic is, and it is clear how Al Ewing's current work has been inspired by this 6-issue run. My kids liked these six issues because, as I mentioned, Hulk is big, green, and strong. I enjoyed it more than I expected to because of its Jekyll and Hyde plotline and how dark it actually is. Fun fact: my father wrote to Marvel back in the 60s to complain after they cancelled the INCREDIBLE HULK series after these six issues. Luckily for him (and everyone else!), they eventually brought the Hulk back. One other thing: the quality of these six issues notwithstanding, Marvel could have stood to have lowered the price a bit, since this is four issues shorter than every single other MASTERWORKS I own.

  16. 5 out of 5

    L.

    The Hulk's first days were a bit different than I was taught. Yes, Bruce Banner was hit by a massive dose of gamma radiation. But here he's able to change from human to monster and back with the help of a special ray gun. Anger has nothing to do with anything. Hulk has enough Banner in him that he can talk quite frequently, and boy, does he have a mouth on him. He's constantly insulting everyone and telling people to shut up. Hulk should be glad humans are so afraid of him or else someone would The Hulk's first days were a bit different than I was taught. Yes, Bruce Banner was hit by a massive dose of gamma radiation. But here he's able to change from human to monster and back with the help of a special ray gun. Anger has nothing to do with anything. Hulk has enough Banner in him that he can talk quite frequently, and boy, does he have a mouth on him. He's constantly insulting everyone and telling people to shut up. Hulk should be glad humans are so afraid of him or else someone would be tempted to smack him upside the head. *Ha. I always thought the character name of 'Betty Ross' was too close to 'Betsy Ross'. Turns out someone at Marvel thought the same thing as in one panel Betty is indeed referred to as Betsy.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jdetrick

    While these aren't really very good comics, they're some of the most interesting of the early Marvel Universe stories. Its so obvious that Stan Lee didn't have a very clear idea of who or what he wanted the Hulk to be....numerous ideas are used and then abandoned in these issues, from a grey Hulk to a green one; from one with Banner's intelligence to one without to one that only obeys Rick Jones; and from a creature that turns into a Hulk when the sun goes down to Banner initiating the transfer While these aren't really very good comics, they're some of the most interesting of the early Marvel Universe stories. Its so obvious that Stan Lee didn't have a very clear idea of who or what he wanted the Hulk to be....numerous ideas are used and then abandoned in these issues, from a grey Hulk to a green one; from one with Banner's intelligence to one without to one that only obeys Rick Jones; and from a creature that turns into a Hulk when the sun goes down to Banner initiating the transfer himself with a machine. It's just fascinating to watch the ideas fly fast and furious. I'd be curious to see where this series would have gone had it not been cancelled.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Max Driffill

    Stan Lee and Jack Kirby give us Marvel’s surliest hero. This is apparently Stan Lee’s attempt to give the world a good Mr. Hyde. The first six issues (contained in this volume) do a very good job of introducing us to the central Hulk cast and establishing the central conflicts internal and interpersonal that will drive the Hulk. The foes aren’t terribly memorable but the original arc succeeds in spite of its villain of the month formula. The heroes and their struggles are actually the stars. Mem Stan Lee and Jack Kirby give us Marvel’s surliest hero. This is apparently Stan Lee’s attempt to give the world a good Mr. Hyde. The first six issues (contained in this volume) do a very good job of introducing us to the central Hulk cast and establishing the central conflicts internal and interpersonal that will drive the Hulk. The foes aren’t terribly memorable but the original arc succeeds in spite of its villain of the month formula. The heroes and their struggles are actually the stars. Memorable villain will emerge later. This is all Hulk.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Angelo

    More interesting as a historical curio, than a Hulk origin as they're still refining the classical elements. Stick with Jeph Loeb's amazing Hulk Gray for a better origin. Lee's stories are silly as hell, and overly expository, but occasionally he'll let Kriby go all out Kirby with some cool visuals. It's also pretty amusing to see some of the stuff Al Ewing would later re contextualise in horrifying way. More interesting as a historical curio, than a Hulk origin as they're still refining the classical elements. Stick with Jeph Loeb's amazing Hulk Gray for a better origin. Lee's stories are silly as hell, and overly expository, but occasionally he'll let Kriby go all out Kirby with some cool visuals. It's also pretty amusing to see some of the stuff Al Ewing would later re contextualise in horrifying way.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Josiah Brown

    Read this a little while ago. Really cool to see the origins of the Hulk, but some of the villains were poorly thought out and made. I mean... Spacetoads ? Seriously? Still a good book though. I would be more interested to see if the later volumes are better. I would recommend this to marvel fans, but if you don't read it, you are not missing out on a ton. Read this a little while ago. Really cool to see the origins of the Hulk, but some of the villains were poorly thought out and made. I mean... Spacetoads ? Seriously? Still a good book though. I would be more interested to see if the later volumes are better. I would recommend this to marvel fans, but if you don't read it, you are not missing out on a ton.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Christian Smith

    Story(Stan Lee): 6/10 Art(Jack Kirby): 5/10 PARENTS GUIDE Age Level: 5+ Violence: Destruction and chaos throughout when hulk destroys things. Drug/Alcohol: a reference to vodka land, referring to Russia No Profanity or Sex/Nudity

  22. 5 out of 5

    Bryan Monrian

    First time reading The Hulk series This is my first time reading the Incredible Hulk and realized that I barely knew anything of Bruce Banners counterpart. Definitely not what I was expecting

  23. 5 out of 5

    Dean Simons

    A fascinating read. Not for the quality of the stories but observing the early development of a classic character before the creators had a grasp of what they were dealing with.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Annie

    I loved getting to read the origin of one of my favorite superheros!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Burns Holland

    It’s no Spidey but prettttty good.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Aaron Martin

    I got this back in the fall for like $7 and it created this rage monster that started picking up collected editions more frequently. So thanks, goofy silver age comics.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Alex Andrasik

    It's kind of amazing how well these six first issues of The Incredible Hulk work as a unit in the mold of a modern six-issue story arc, with the Hulk's situation changing and advancing in logical steps from one chapter to the next. It's also amazing how much better these are than the Ant-Man/Giant-Man stories I just reviewed. Stan Lee really lays it on thick with the whole "hunted and feared by an indifferent world" schtick, but it works remarkably well. There's already a little more finesse to t It's kind of amazing how well these six first issues of The Incredible Hulk work as a unit in the mold of a modern six-issue story arc, with the Hulk's situation changing and advancing in logical steps from one chapter to the next. It's also amazing how much better these are than the Ant-Man/Giant-Man stories I just reviewed. Stan Lee really lays it on thick with the whole "hunted and feared by an indifferent world" schtick, but it works remarkably well. There's already a little more finesse to the Hulk's self-loathing here than is evident with the Thing in early issue of the FF, which is probably assisted by the fact that Lee lets the Hulk be really angry. Sure, Ben Grimm lashes out now and then, but ultimately he's got great self-control; Banner's jolly green alter-ego, not so much. He gives vent to his rage, nit as a childlike force of nature he would become in later years, but as a tough-talking ruffian type, a 1950s movie gangster with incalculable power and a tiny nagging conscience. I liked Rick Jones a lot more than I expected I would. His devotion to Bruce Banner, the scientist who saved his life at great personal cost, is really touching. I'm left wondering about his personal life, though. What was he doing out on that test site alone? What's his relationship to his never-mentioned parents? At one point he refers to the Hulk as his only real friend, yet later he's able to rally the local teens into a crack information and support network for the hulk; is this a character inconsistency or a sign of unplumbed depths? I know a little bit about how he develops over the years, so I'm going to give Stan the benefit of the doubt and say it's the latter. Great Kirby artwork. He really leans into the Frankenstein's Monster look for the Hulk. Steve Ditko is credited with the art in issue 6, though I could swear parts of some of the middle issues resemble his work. At any rate, Kirby set the table admirably, while Ditko brings a delightful looniness that is all his own and works for the more surreal edge of the Hulk's adventures. I know he has a significant run on purple-pants' second go-round, so I'm looking forward to that. LADYWATCH: Betty Ross is mostly a clueless damsel, shrieking at the Hulk and wondering where Bruce Banner's gotten off to. I give her credit for recognizing a connection between Bruce, Rick, and Hulk, but dock her for never getting near the obvious truth. Though with a dad like Thunderbolt Ross, I can't blame her for being somewhat less than self-confident. BRING ON THE BAD GUYS: The only significant super-threats introduced in these issues are Ringmaster and Tyrannus, and neither is what I'd call A-List, but they've both maintained long histories bedeviling Marvel's heroes. The biggest antagonist of the bunch is General Ross, who does multi-duty as a sort of militaristic Javert, judgey father-in-law, and heavily-armed J. Jonah Jameson. FINAL THOUGHTS: As absurd as the Hulk's lair is--an "undersea" cavern that's somehow in close proximity to the desert, a city, and wherever General Ross happens to be--there's something very eerie and evocative about the isolation Banner/Hulk faces in those depths; it underscores Rick's dedication as the only one who can lock him in and let him out every day; and it provides fodder for some iconic Kirby images of an enraged Hulk battering at the prison his own alter-ego snared him in. But there's no forgiving this series' extreme messing with the laws of time and space. Silver Age comics are always pretty loosey-goosey with such things, but Stan was more egregious than usual here. General Ross is clearly a mutant teleporter.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Leigh Anne

    Learning the early origins of our giant green friend has been entertaining and educational. The back matter essays are valuable for people who like to know the stories behind the curtain, and there are short biographies, too, of all the creators. The real gem here, though, are the comics themselves, pulpy and silly at times, and yet, at other times, very on point/erudite. From a historical pov, this is a good chronicle of all the things we used to be scared of: science gone wrong, aliens invadin Learning the early origins of our giant green friend has been entertaining and educational. The back matter essays are valuable for people who like to know the stories behind the curtain, and there are short biographies, too, of all the creators. The real gem here, though, are the comics themselves, pulpy and silly at times, and yet, at other times, very on point/erudite. From a historical pov, this is a good chronicle of all the things we used to be scared of: science gone wrong, aliens invading, Communists, and spies stealing our secrets. And you can tell Stan Lee was having a great time dreaming up these plots. The concept of the struggle between man's better and beastly natures has a long history, and in this iteration of the story it's man's meddling in higher powers that triggers the conflict. Perhaps we should not have been playing with gamma radiation, Dr. Banner? But then again, the selfless act that leads to being bombarded with radiation and Hulking out is indicative of the fact that, even when we mess up, we humans work hard to redeem ourselves. People hate and fear the Hulk because he represents the worst parts of ourselves run amok; that is not a thing we tolerate lightly. Or, you know, maybe it's just a fun summer afternoon read about a monster. Either way, good stuff.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    Following the success of the off-beat superhero group The Fantastic Four, Stan Lee set out to create Marvel's next great comic book hit. Fusing his love for the Frankenstein movie with the story of Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Lee created a monster who would find a way to help people, while struggling with his own demons. While Lee once again broke new ground by placing a monster in the role of hero (and the Hulk did ultimately become one of Marvel's most popular characters), these six issues are a Following the success of the off-beat superhero group The Fantastic Four, Stan Lee set out to create Marvel's next great comic book hit. Fusing his love for the Frankenstein movie with the story of Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Lee created a monster who would find a way to help people, while struggling with his own demons. While Lee once again broke new ground by placing a monster in the role of hero (and the Hulk did ultimately become one of Marvel's most popular characters), these six issues are a real work in progress. Not only is Bruce Banner's origin told multiple times over six issues, but the character's powers evolve from one story to the next. Additionally, the storylines themselves felt repetitive. When the Hulk isn't fighting off an alien invasion, he's fighting communism, and getting chased by the U.S. military (there's also a strong similarity to the cliche Clark Kent problem in that people always 'notice' that Dr Banner goes missing every time the Hulk arrives, but they can never put two and two together). Overall, Stan Lee created a great character but it seems like he wasn't quite sure what to do with him after the first issue.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Robert Monk

    A cheap little mass-market collection of the first six issues of the Hulk comic. It's interesting to see Stan Lee and Jack Kirby struggle to figure out just what exactly they should do with this character they've created. There's clearly a lot of potential there, but just where to go with it? (The struggle continues, as evidenced by the more recent difficulties that movie producers have had with the character.) The Hulk changes several times in the course of these six issues, and the series was A cheap little mass-market collection of the first six issues of the Hulk comic. It's interesting to see Stan Lee and Jack Kirby struggle to figure out just what exactly they should do with this character they've created. There's clearly a lot of potential there, but just where to go with it? (The struggle continues, as evidenced by the more recent difficulties that movie producers have had with the character.) The Hulk changes several times in the course of these six issues, and the series was cancelled. The Hulk continued, of course, but one can see the problems here in his initial run. Still, it's interesting for those with a bit of interest in old comics. There are far better editions to be found, of course. This one is pretty small, making the art hard to see. But, hey, you get what you pay for.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.