theacidskull's Hulk #1 - Who Shot the Hulk Part 1 review

We are the Heroes of our Own stories

If you've been following me around, it won't surprise you that I've been very disappointed with the way Indestructible Hulk had been concluded. Sure it did deliver some good aspects, but as a whole it just didn't work out. Part of the charm was really lost after the Agent of time arc, which is sad really because while not the best Hulk run in years, it was definitely a refreshing way of looking at certain things. With Indestructible Hulk ending comes another hulk title also written by Waid and illustrated by Mark Bagley. Now a lot of the Hulk fans are in mid decision on whether to stay with the series or not.So, here's the question, Is HULK worth your time? lets find out.

The issue has Waids trail all over it, and by that I mean that it has a wonderful narrative through which we get a good view of the current events as well as Hulks history. Unfortunately, due to the events of the last issue( Indestructible Hulk #20), both Bruce and Hulk are a bit unable to really speak to the audience, so as the opening issue, and as the jumping point, Waid tells the story of the main character through the eyes of others. Hence, we are introduced with a new character called Dr.Aaron Carpenter( Subtle way to pay respects to Jason Aaron I see). Carpenter really isn't a mind blowing character, and he's not supposed to be, he's here to serves a purpose, and through him, we get a general view of the Hulks true nature. One of the concepts tackled by Waid, which he establishes right away, is that there is a lot of controversy surrounding the creating as well as the personality of the Hulk, but it's made clear the he's still essentially a hero, not a monster, and is often times misunderstood rather than guilty. This is actually a very good way to open a HULK issue, especially when it's a new-reader friendly issue. I can't really say much more about Dr.Aaron, other than for a one-off protagonist, he was pretty good. I see that he's been integrated into Bruce's early years (Though don't worry, not in harmful way whatsoever), so there might be a slim chance we'll see him again.

Furthermore, Both Bagley and Mark do a good job of keeping bruce's killer in the shadows, because while it's clear that they've met before, I can't really put my finger on who she is( yes it's a she). And on that note, I'm glad that we got a view of the villains in the very first issue, the ambiguity of their identity as well as their motives already make them pretty interesting, but I gather than they'll be the brains behind the operations because the likelihood the they'll stand against the Hulk is nonexistent, which to be honest is fine, if these guys create monsters and such( which, considering the previews is a high possibility), I'll be fine with them being just the organizers. Now before Hulk fans mention it( and I know they will), Banner getting hit by a bullet and getting hurt isn't an improbability, similar things have happened before. Even during davids run, which is the holy grail of anything hulk related, Banner had nearly been killed by grenade shrapnels logged in his brain, so firing bullets strategically in specific trajectories isn't really out-of character as many would probably describe it to be, plus any normal human would have died from such an attack, Banner didn't.

Now on to the part I didn't like. Aside from the good narrative, I think the idea that Banner will be shifting personalities should have been established in the very first issue, because the way the issue ended, it might piss of a couple of people. I didn't have a reacting because I've read some interviews with Waid stating why Banner is in this state, but others might not have. Also when Hulking out Banner should have healed the wound by the time he got to town, but oh well, it's not really a big deal.

If you've liked Bagleys art before, then there isn't really a reason for you to not like it here. The man has some really good storytelling capabilities when he brings his a game to the table, and considering that I really enjoyed his art here, i'd say he is. I like Hulks design as well, he looks fantastic and the coloring really compliments both the way Mark draws and Hulk in general.

So is this title worth your time? Yes, yes it is. If you've read indestructible you'll notice as change in tone, and it's clear Waid really wants to do something specifically unique so I'd say he's really outdone himself in terms of concept creating, though the execution is still yet to be seen. Nevertheless, for a starting issue, it was definitely good, not amazing, but solid. I had everything a issue #1 should have in all honesty.

Recommendation: Yes.

14 Comments
Posted by RaynorJ

I respect your review but i find the issue to be a big disappointment and if i wrote a review i would have went to town on Waid here but again that's me and you have a different opinion which is only normal.

Edited by TheAcidSkull

@raynorj said:

I respect your review but i find the issue to be a big disappointment and if i wrote a review i would have went to town on Waid here but again that's me and you have a different opinion which is only normal.

What didn't you like about it?:)

Posted by RaynorJ

I didn't like the feats he had as i mentioned in other threads, particularly the adamantium one. I don't like that Waid thinks he will satisfy Hulk fans by overfeeding the issues with random feats(with again lack of a strength feat for some reason we had 20 issues of IH without a single clear strength feat and having Hulk with no strength feats is like having Flash not running, it's criminal). I didn't like that the entire issue basically focused on one random guy that just exists for this single issue that happened to have a connection to Banner, yes i know Banner is comatose but that was a perfect chance for us to go inside Banners mind and see his inner world and visit maybe some old Hulks or even see a dialogue between Banner and Hulk maybe FINALLY see some character from Hulk, but nope it was a wasted opportunity. I don't like how convenient it was that Hulk saved some random little girl years ago and she just happens to be the nurse at this top secret facility so she decides to save Banner just at the right time. And finally i don't like how once again the whole thing is Banner centric, it all once again revolves around Banner.... Oh NO, Banner is brain damaged whatever will we do now, how can we save Banner, what shall we do with Banner, what will become of Banner? Banner, Banner, BANNER... I am tired of this crap. This was a very weak beginning to a series.

Waid is all about... Banner is so smart so intelligent he is the most valuable genius on the planet and Hulk is the strongest living thing a living hurricane a unstoppable force of nature, etc... He is all about talk, he thinks that taking about all these things is just as good as showing them, as if he is plagiarizing the Hulk fans and treating them like idiots and when he finally shows some feats they don't make any sense and focus more on things like durability and speed while most of us are waiting to see Hulk what he is known for, STRENGTH... Sorry for the rant but this issue got to me more than i thought it would i need to go now and cool of my head.

I wish Savage Hulk came out sooner...

Posted by TheAcidSkull

@raynorj: How is it Banner centric? With Banner being the wild card we'll have more of a chance to focus on hulk. I just don't understand how they could have DONE everything in ONE issue. Not all writers see eye to eye, this was a good start in a sense that it gave new readers a good overview on what kind of a person/monster hulk is and waid threw in some feats in here, which didn't contradict or hinder the storytelling so I don't understand how it's not just an added plus?

If Waid hadn't shown any feats hear, people would complain that his hulk is too weak for something. Look, I respect your opinion, I really do, but I just don't understand how the reasons you provided are necessarily..bad? Waid did much more here than he has done in the last arcs of indestructible.

Posted by RaynorJ

It's Banner centric because again it follows Banner not Hulk, from the interviews Waid gave i got the impression that Banner was gonna be comatose and that we would be seeing Hulk a lot more than Banner, but nope its the same old again. I am not asking them to do EVERYTHING in ONE issue. But they did almost nothing right, not a single thing i wanted, they did pretty much everything the opposite.

What new readers? You really think there a bunch of new readers that just jumped on this new series out of nowhere and really don't know what the Hulk is all about? They need to be spoon fed by Waid? The series should be lucky if it can sustain it's old readers seeing as Hulk dropped far below other Marvel series. How did Hulk resisting adamantium bullets not contradict things? When has he done this? When even the strongest incarnations of Hulk got shredded by adamantium. What am i to expect that the next time Hulk fights against someone who uses adamantium he will remain unhurt?

It's ironical because i saw much more people complaining because of the feats shown and not because of the lack of them. The Hulk is too weak, Waids Hulk is incredibly weak. Apparently he is extremely durable and pretty fast but he is weak as all hell because again i have yet to see a single strength feat from Waids Hulk. Doesn't this bother you at all? The last arc of Indestructible was terrible just because this is better doesn't make it good. It's like saying the shit i took yesterday is better than the one i took the day before, at the end of day it's still crap.

Posted by TheAcidSkull

@raynorj said:

It's Banner centric because again it follows Banner not Hulk, from the interviews Waid gave i got the impression that Banner was gonna be comatose and that we would be seeing Hulk a lot more than Banner, but nope its the same old again. I am not asking them to do EVERYTHING in ONE issue. But they did almost nothing right, not a single thing i wanted, they did pretty much everything the opposite.

What new readers? You really think there a bunch of new readers that just jumped on this new series out of nowhere and really don't know what the Hulk is all about? They need to be spoon fed by Waid? The series should be lucky if it can sustain it's old readers seeing as Hulk dropped far below other Marvel series. How did Hulk resisting adamantium bullets not contradict things? When has he done this? When even the strongest incarnations of Hulk got shredded by adamantium. What am i to expect that the next time Hulk fights against someone who uses adamantium he will remain unhurt?

It's ironical because i saw much more people complaining because of the feats shown and not because of the lack of them. The Hulk is too weak, Waids Hulk is incredibly weak. Apparently he is extremely durable and pretty fast but he is weak as all hell because again i have yet to see a single strength feat from Waids Hulk. Doesn't this bother you at all? The last arc of Indestructible was terrible just because this is better doesn't make it good. It's like saying the shit i took yesterday is better than the one i took the day before, at the end of day it's still crap.

We got more Hulk than in this issue, and neither displayed any forms of personality considering they were on a operating table. Nothing right? They seem to get the most of it pretty well. The only thing missing was basically Banner which is explained because again, he's been shot in the head twice. Hulk, despite his words, did display some personality, just not as much they could have considering the circumstances. Waid also brought in some pretty interesting people who wanted to control for reasons that are yet to be known, as well as mysterious assassin. And it all comes down to the argument of it's NOT what I WANT! well if I gave you the lists of things I wanted for a Hulk title I'd never finish it because i'm just as demanding as any other hulk fan, only difference is that I've realized that different writers ALWAYS have different interpretations.

It's irrelevant whether new readers are actually coming or not, it would be ignorant on waids part to pretty much ignore Hulks history. It's, regardless of how you see things, a jumping point, therefore, it needs a certain recap, and it was provided. Last time Banner explained his history through he change in personality and status qho, this time someone did it for him.

As seem to recall someone breaking the time Barrier quite comfortably. Show me any other character who has done that and I'll shut up. and No, it had nothing to do with the chronarchists, because right after hulk BREAKS the time Barrier Zarrko attributes the feat only to him and him alone. He also just broke through a wall tampered with the Negative zone, WHILE weakened. Durability and strength go hand in hand by the way, they're not the same obviously but they are closely tied to each other. Just because hulk isn't smashing through planets doesn't mean he is weak. Next issue we have abomination appearing and personally I was expecting this issue to much worse, but it wasn't, it was a coherent introduction and it served it's purpose. The fact that BANNER is the wild card, I repeat for the billionth time, means that HULK will be the constant brains as well as the brawn of future undertakings.

No writer will meet the THIS IS WHAT I WANT factor, and it's VERY rare for such a thing to happen.

Posted by GreenScar1990

Got to agree with @raynorj. A serious letdown once again. Ah, I miss the days when we actually had solid Hulk stories.

Posted by RaynorJ

They could have displayed as much as personality as they wanted, the circumstances don't stop them at all, like i said they could have went inside Banners mine instead of giving us long ass pages of the brain surgeons inner monologue that i honestly skipped through at the end because it was useless. The argument of it's NOT WHAT I WANT is just as valid argument as any other you can make, this is not a free media i have no obligation to like what Waid is writing or to suffer through it, i did that with 20 issues of Indestructible. The things i want are so simple, pretty much every writer on Hulk has met them... I want to see things from Hulks POV, i want to see some strength feats and i want good villains. The only guy that has ignored all 3 for 21 issues is Waid. And these are not just personal gripes they are pretty much detrimental to a Hulk series, not meeting these things means something is very VERY wrong with the direction that is taken.

And it was just a giant waste of time, nothing new was added or said. Recapping the Hulks history is fine but focusing on it for so long and bringing in a random new guy to it who was obviously used just for that issue was pretty pointless. I am not a fan of wasting time and pages just because he has to stick to an idea that we need a lesson in Hulks history. And the villains don't interest me either to be frank, just a bunch of puny humans with the same old motives of trying to control the Hulk and use his powers. If Hulk is suppose to fight them i am not excited about it one bit.

But the time feat was possible only because of the Chronarchist it's not possible for Hulk to do it always, why doesn't he break the time barrier all the time if all is needed is one good punch? Nobody will ever accept that Hulk broke it completely on his own. We got dozens of feats of durability and no feat of strength so apparently for Waid they don't go hand in hand. I don't need Hulk breaking planets i already said this several times before the issue was even out at this point i would be satisfied with him lifting a car above his head. The issue again follows Banner, the wild card thing does not change the fact that everything revolves around him again. When will we get Hulk? What Hulk will we get? How well will he be treated? Are still questions Waid doesn't give us answer to, but he got the time to give us an answer on what will be happening to Banner.

I don't know about you but writers constantly meet the THIS IS WHAT I WANT factor and it's very common for it to happen even with the series i get frustrated with but for some reason the only one that keeps dodging this is Waid. Even Aaron gave me some things that i wanted. When i read a Hulk title and i want things like cool displays of strength, satisfying villains and Hulk beings his own character it's not hard at all to meet those expectations even if not all 3 unless you are Waid who does everything but those 3 things so far.

Posted by RaynorJ

They could have displayed as much as personality as they wanted, the circumstances don't stop them at all, like i said they could have went inside Banners mine instead of giving us long ass pages of the brain surgeons inner monologue that i honestly skipped through at the end because it was useless. The argument of it's NOT WHAT I WANT is just as valid argument as any other you can make, this is not a free media i have no obligation to like what Waid is writing or to suffer through it, i did that with 20 issues of Indestructible. The things i want are so simple, pretty much every writer on Hulk has met them... I want to see things from Hulks POV, i want to see some strength feats and i want good villains. The only guy that has ignored all 3 for 21 issues is Waid. And these are not just personal gripes they are pretty much detrimental to a Hulk series, not meeting these things means something is very VERY wrong with the direction that is taken.

And it was just a giant waste of time, nothing new was added or said. Recapping the Hulks history is fine but focusing on it for so long and bringing in a random new guy to it who was obviously used just for that issue was pretty pointless. I am not a fan of wasting time and pages just because he has to stick to an idea that we need a lesson in Hulks history. And the villains don't interest me either to be frank, just a bunch of puny humans with the same old motives of trying to control the Hulk and use his powers. If Hulk is suppose to fight them i am not excited about it one bit.

But the time feat was possible only because of the Chronarchist it's not possible for Hulk to do it always, why doesn't he break the time barrier all the time if all is needed is one good punch? Nobody will ever accept that Hulk broke it completely on his own. We got dozens of feats of durability and no feat of strength so apparently for Waid they don't go hand in hand. I don't need Hulk breaking planets i already said this several times before the issue was even out at this point i would be satisfied with him lifting a car above his head. The issue again follows Banner, the wild card thing does not change the fact that everything revolves around him again. When will we get Hulk? What Hulk will we get? How well will he be treated? Are still questions Waid doesn't give us answer to, but he got the time to give us an answer on what will be happening to Banner.

I don't know about you but writers constantly meet the THIS IS WHAT I WANT factor and it's very common for it to happen even with the series i get frustrated with but for some reason the only one that keeps dodging this is Waid. Even Aaron gave me some things that i wanted. When i read a Hulk title and i want things like cool displays of strength, satisfying villains and Hulk beings his own character it's not hard at all to meet those expectations even if not all 3 unless you are Waid who does everything but those 3 things so far.

@greenscar1990 Me too... It's a pity we have to suffer through with Waids writing, Jun can't come soon enough i can't wait to drop this title and read Savage Hulk to be honest.

Posted by Lvenger

A very analytical review TAS. You do a great job on the overall review of Waid's opening issue. What strikes me about this issue though is that it does seem to detract from Hulk's perspective and play about more with new random one shot characters seeing Hulk's origin through their eyes. If this is leading up to Waid's Hulk origin retcon, these plot points might fall flat on their face. Still, it seems as if Waid's rectified some flaws in his last run, namely the lack of action and feats. And teased the mysterious assassin well. It's not the most enthralling opening issue but it appears solid just as you said it was :)

Edited by TheAcidSkull

@lvenger said:

A very analytical review TAS. You do a great job on the overall review of Waid's opening issue. What strikes me about this issue though is that it does seem to detract from Hulk's perspective and play about more with new random one shot characters seeing Hulk's origin through their eyes. If this is leading up to Waid's Hulk origin retcon, these plot points might fall flat on their face. Still, it seems as if Waid's rectified some flaws in his last run, namely the lack of action and feats. And teased the mysterious assassin well. It's not the most enthralling opening issue but it appears solid just as you said it was :)

exactly :), and thank you :D

Posted by PunyParker

Nice!

Posted by ShadowSwordmaster

I was wondering what you will say about this issue.This review is pretty good .

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

I saw a lot of negative reviews for this. Surprising to see a Waid book get this much heat.

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