Written by, Al Ewing
Penciled by, Joe Bennett
Inks by, Ruy Jose
Letters by, VC’s Cory Petit
The Cop’s Story: Leonardo Romero, artist
The Bartender’s Story: Paul Hornschemeier, artist, colors, letters
The Old Lady’s Story: Marguerite Sauvage, artist, colors
The Priest’s Story: Garry Brown, artist; Paul Mounts, colors
Reviewed by, Tom Zimm
In this issue, Jackie McGee, a reporter for the Arizona Herald, retells the story of a Hulk sighting at “The Mercer Ave. Church” through the eyes of 4 characters: The Cop, The Bartender, The Old Lady, and The Priest. Each has a unique experience and perspective each revealing the immortality and the mystery that surrounds The Hulk’s reappearance. The issue ends with a reveal. Jackie has a conversation with a character new to the story arc who is also in pursuit of The Hulk.
The idea of The Hulk being immortal was affirmed by his reappearance in issue #1 and through the retelling of this fact in the previous issue. The plot in this issue surrounds the appearance of a new character “Hotshot”, The Hulk confronting this character, and the mystery around “The Green Door,” which is painted on the wall of a hotel room near the end of the issue. The author does a nice job of utilizing metaphor, folklore, and cryptic storytelling to increase the mystery around this concept.
The art, which is done by a combination of fewer known artists who switch depending on the minor character who is retelling their version of The Hulk’s appearance, is beautifully rendered and supports the tone of each character’s perceptions perfectly. For example, the art depicting The Priest’s retelling has a horror element mixed with mysticism; it’s dark and foreboding. The art depicting the Old Lady’s perspective was bubbly, colorful, and romantic setting a completely different tone supporting a separate perspective.
The entertainment value of this story grows with each issue. Despite the fact the old school renderings of the Hulk were the only images provided for the Jade Giant, this issue was 100% about The Hulk and kept my interest throughout. I’m very interested in Jackie McGee’s motivation, outside of journalistic integrity. And, the appearance of a new player, Walter Langkowski, is interesting and builds the value of the story for me. I highly recommend this book to fans of The Hulk and old-school storytelling with a modern twist.