Monday, January 2, 2017

Hulk #1 Review and *SPOILERS* - Marvel Monday

Shadow of My Former Self

Written By: Mariko Tamaki
Art By: Nico Leon, Matt Milla
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: December 28, 2016
Publisher: Marvel

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Very few characters came out of Civil War II unscathed and She-Hulk is no exception. She began the crossover event by being blown up and put into a coma for the majority of the event and then when she did wake up, she woke up to find that Bruce Banner had been killed by Hawkeye. Understandably, She-Hulk isn’t in the best place these days. Thus, clearly this is the best time to launch her new series. I’ve actually been really looking forward to this book and I am excited to see what this creative team has in store for me. How about we stop talking about the book and just jump right into it?

Our issue begins with Jen getting ready for her first day back at work since the superhero civil war ended. While she gets ready she listens to a cooking series on her computer as she tries to keep her cool. Jen’s inner monologue is at odds with itself as we see her trying to calm herself and stay grounded just before interrupting herself for being an annoyance. Jen grabs her things and stands at her front door for a moment before finally walking through it and heading to her job. Jen seem to take some comfort in the fact that in New York she is just another faceless person in the crowd.

Jen arrives at work and immediately meets her new assistant Bradley who brings her up to speed with her work. As Jen attempts to go towards her office, she notices that everyone in the building seems to be staring at her. They all welcome her back to work. This of course stresses Jen out but she gets through it and disappears into her office. She was told that she had a client waiting for her but all the lights are out and she turns on the light to immediately be greeted by a very small and hunched over woman. It initially frightens her but she is able to recover quickly. The woman is named Miss Brewn and she is worried about being evicted from her home. Seems that her landlord has been giving her trouble but he doesn’t seem to have the right to remove her. Jen tells her that she is going to do everything she can to help Miss Brewn. Jen tells her that she doesn’t believe in making promises when it comes to law but she is going to do her best for her client.

Jen takes several other meetings that day before she leaves work. She gets a text from Patsy hoping that she had a good day and Jen stops for Chinese on the way home. Jen arrives at home only to be approached by someone. Turns out that it is someone looking to write a story or a book about trauma and he wants to write about Bruce Banner and Jen Walters. She tells him to leave immediately and that he is not welcome there. She gets in the elevator and as she rises up she begins to lose control and we see She-Hulk emerge and smash the elevator control panel. Jen leaves the elevator still struggling with her emotions and she opens her laptop and begins playing the cooking show that she was listening to earlier. She listens to it as her eyes turn green and we see green fluid in her veins before she is able to finally regain control of herself. The reason Jen is listening to this show is because a nurse that took care of her claimed that the art of cooking could soothe the savage beast. We leave Jen laying on the floor next to her computer and we catch up with Miss Brewn who seems to believe that Jen promised her that she wouldn’t have to leave and she tells something in the shadow of her apartment as much. We never see what is hiding in the shadows but it’s probably safe to say it’s not good. This is where the issue leaves us.

When I initially finished reading this book, I wasn’t too impressed. Granted I wasn’t disappointed either but I thought that this issue was just okay. At this time though, it has been a couple days and it has allowed the book to marinate a little bit. Now when I think of this book I find it to be incredibly clever and a very smart story. Sure, there aren’t any big battle or anything like that but it’s still very exciting. Seeing Jen dealing with PTSD and having to try reentering the real world is what will make this story special. Granted, most of the issue is set up which is rarely the most exciting part of a story but I’m actually really excited for this book now. The creative team is taking a more cerebral approach to this character and I couldn’t be more excited about it. I honestly can’t wait for the next issue.

Bits and Pieces

This issue shows that the creative team is going to be taking a more cerebral approach to this character and I find that to be incredibly clever. This issue is a lot of set up and it took me a couple days after reading the story to fully appreciate what the writer was planning on doing with this book. That said, I’m impressed and I can’t wait to see more.


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