The GoodMark Waid has discovered the formula for a great Hulk book. Each issue thus far has managed to deliver both brains and brawn without neglecting either key part of the character. Banner's relationship with S.H.I.E.L.D. continues to go down an interesting path and Hulk continues to... well, pummel stuff with those big ole Hulk hands of his.
I've been wondering why they had him on a Helicarrier. I get they have a back-up plan in case he goes green, but there's still a huge risk involved there. Being trapped on that massive flying vessel with the Green Goliath isn't exactly an ideal scenario. Waid addresses that concern of mine and we see Banner has now set-up shop in a far less populated location: an atomic testing facility. Throwing a total of four assistants his way seems a bit excessive (I'd honestly have to double check what their full names are), but if their continued relationship is as amusing as this brief interaction, then I'm absolutely all ears with this part of the narrative.
Just like the previous issues, roughly half of this book will focus on S.H.I.E.L.D.'s need for Banner's unfriendly side. Dubbed the "undersea Gaddafi" in this issue, Attuma is slaughtering ship crews in the Pacific. This issue has the least amount of smashing in the series so far, but the art team (Leinil Francis Yu on pencils, Gerry Alanguilan on ink, and Sunny Gho on colors) makes up for that with some phenomenal work. Yu's sketchy and rough style is perfectly complimented with thick inking and vibrant coloring. Right on the first page, we're treated to a disturbingly beautiful panel of Banner when he was hit by the gamma bomb. The underwater scenes (and there are quite a few) are equally impressive. Additionally, I adore how the lettering Hulks out along with Banner. Small touches like that really help make the comic standout.
Waid's doing an awesome job with the script -- it manages to consistently juggle a fun and humorous tone. Everything from Banner testing his new employees to miscommunication with Chinese agents had my full attention and was downright pleasant. He's added a layer of mystery with Banner's phone buddy and the conversations are a joy to read.
The BadOverall the art is commendable but there are quite a few panels that feel unfinished. Certain characters lack any detail or even facial features at times. It's not frequent, but it is noticeable.
This series has had really frenetic action that's loaded with amazing looking motion blur and this action scene definitely pales in comparison. Sure, Hulk's underwater so that hinders his effectiveness, but it didn't feel as energetic as it could have. Here's hoping that's rectified in the next issue.