INDESTRUCTIBLE HULK Blind Rage: Part 2 My first Hulk comic in over 15 years!
COVER ART: 3/5 My initial impulse was to rate this cover by PAOLO RIVERA a 2, or even a 1.5, but upon further inspection of this cover I had to give it the "neither good nor neither bad" rating of 3 stars. What I do like about this cover is how DD holds his cane weapons in such a way that he covers both Hulk's eyes and Bruce Banners eyes. It is very relative to not only the story but also to his partner of this issue Daredevil who is blind. I also do like the way DD is drawn and colored for this cover. I tend to overlook poor art or less than stellar art if there is some symbolism or hidden message in the art, which this has. What I didn't like about this cover is the simplicity for one, the use of these simple lines. I also don't like how Rivera drew Hulk with hair on his right arm, hand and fingers but not on his left hand. I also don't like some of the color choices. DD's cane weapon is typically red and Bruce Banner such a conservative, low key guy (the complete opposite of HULK) so I know he would never wear a PINK shirt.
STORY ARC: 2.5/5 This is the second real book I have read of MARK WAID (the first was this week's Daredevil issue) and I wish, I really wish I liked his writing, but I just don't.
We start this issue as a Part 2, but to be honest, if you started on this issue as I have, you wouldn't feel lost. This is not a testament to Waid by the way. This story is just not that deep.
The Hulk is now being pimped out to S.H.I.E.L.D so Bruce Banner can have himself a nice dozy, and free, lab to do all his smart science stuff. How selfish. And to complicate this partnership, the Hulk is going through multiple and varying stages of intelligence which makes missions involving the Hulk sketchy at best. This particular mission involves the partnership with Daredevil in taking down a powerful and illegal weapons trading operation involving both Hydra and Baron Zemo (I thought old Baron retired! LOL) The shipment of Thor Level weapons were compromised by Thor and DD in last issue but one single weapon was able to be delivered to Baron Zemo (which he uses to kill the delivery man...rude!) This weapon uses powerful SONIC VORTEX that uses SOUNDWAVES to produce a very powerful assault force, and is named the SONIC ASSAULT RIFLE (now someone on here can get some wiki points by doing a wiki page for "the SONIC ASSAULT RIFLE...thanks Mark for naming weapons that are only going to be used in one issue) When Daredevil and Hulk crash Baron Zemo's party, literally and figuratively, Zemo uses the SONIC ASSAULT RIFLE on Hulk temporarily blinding Hulk. I think this is a clever bit as both Hero and pimped out green WMD are now both blind. Well, there is one thing that Hulk hates more than getting his panties in a bunch, and that is being blind! Hulk goes into a terror smashing $h!t left and right. This issue now becomes more about DD being awesome and fighting not only the hydra bunch, but avoiding being smashed to hell by blind Hulk in the process. Most of the narrative and perspective come from Daredevil this issue, which is great because I LOVE Daredevil, but this isn't his title, he is the guest appearance. Its like having the opening band be better than the headlining band. Daredevil manages to get his hands on the SONIC ASSAULT RIFLE and...I love this part...uses it as a "cattle prod" to manage Hulk around. Classic. Good job on this Waid. lol.
The baddies escape through a teleporter and now it is up to DD to coral Hulk and get him to calm down. After some serious collateral damage to the city, Hulk regains his vision and some intelligence and saves DD from being crushed for the second or third time in this issue from a falling structure.
Ultimately was this a successful mission? I guess so. The hidden Hydra weapons cache was totally smashed up by the blind raging Hulk and the SONIC ASSAULT RIFLE was reclaimed, but the baddies got away and there is ton of damage to the city. But we now know "Hulk and Devil Man friends"
STORY ART: 3/5 I have not followed MATTEO SCALERA much but I am a huge comic fan and know good art when I see it. There are some really good emotional screams happening in this issue that are well drawn and Matteo does a good job producing movement and different camera angles. There are few things I didn't like though. (1) why is Hulk wearing this armor outfit? does he really need it? Doesn't he get both stronger AND bigger when he gets angry? I think the armor takes away from Hulk's awesomeness by making the reader think he NEEDS armor which we all know he doesn't. It is gimicky. (2) Proportions. There are times in this issue where Hulks hands are drawn SO BIG but his head sooo small. I don't know if it to represent that he is in dumb-dumb town at the time, but I prefer images of Hulk that allow him to have proper proportions (hands and feet to head ratio = normal but just much bigger than a human) versus the little head syndrome a lot of artists try to impose on Hulk. (3) here are a few images from this issue that I would like to comment on.
This looks cool but is not realistic to the characters individual traits. (1) DD is not faster than HULK running. He is a superbly gifted acrobat and athlete but he would get smoked in a footrace by Hulk. (2) He would not be running in the middle of the street as that is a very poor vantage point and puts him at too much of a risk against snipers being out in the open so much. He would be swinging through the air using his cain weapon, high above all the threats and giving his a better vantage point to allocate his targets without being seen. He is a highly skilled ninja, so DD running in the middle of the street like this just wouldn't happen. (3) Hulk would not run either really. He would probably do a massive Hulk jump to wherever he was going. Matteo could have made this a really awesome image of Hulk Jumping high over the buildings with Matt Swinging along just below. More drama, more awesome, and more in-line with the characters true nature.
I have the same issue with this image. S.H.I.E.L.D agents are smarter than to be huddled up in this little cluster out in the middle of the street. One well placed RPG from a rooftop position takes out this entire team at once. S.H.I.E.L.D agents are notorious from arriving from helicopters or some sort of hover craft and dispensing their agents from a top to bottom position, giving the team a tactical advantage. Not only that, but the HEAD of S.H.I.E.L.D would probably NOT be part of this little scout team, screaming at the top of her lungs! This image just says, "HEY BAD GUYS, WE ARE ALL IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET LIKE A GAGGLE, SHOOT US ALL NOW!" And it is a repeat angle and style of how DD and Hulk were running down the middle of the street to where they were going. This seems like a lazy camera angle choice especially since we already saw it a few pages back. (see image above)
I do like this image, even though Hulk is wearing that ridiculous armor. I like the background detail and well as the expression on DD's face. "Hulk and DD are Friends!" and this really shows what Hulk is good at, holding up heavy stuff or smashing heavy things.
FINAL VERDICT: 3/5
So, I read this issue at the recommendation of @raw_material. I think he is a bigger Hulk fan than even @theincrediblesuperhulk8642, which says a lot actually. I don't hate this issue, but I am not a real big Hulk fan. I like it because Daredevil was in it and was the star of this show, so I would recommend this issue for that reason.