Hulk: Gray – Jeph Loeb & Tim Sale
This tale examines in new detail the earliest days of the Incredible Hulk. As Dr. Bruce Banner makes his first transformations into his brutish alter ego, relationships that will influence his life and the life of the Hulk are forged… and destroyed! Collects Hulk: Gray #1-6
Reviewing the comic via my comiXology app
I’ve been a reader for as long as I can remember and comic books have been a regular feature on my bookshelves (and in very long, white boxes) for around 30 years. When I was very young I was introduced to Spider-man and The Incredible Hulk through a weekly comic published by Marvel Comics UK. They are nothing like the monthly publications that you find in stores like Forbidden Planet – think the Beano or Dandy but with more Thwip and Smash.
These days I cannot afford to feed my comic book addiction to the extent that I would like so I rely upon my local library for many of the Graphic Novels that I read and I make very good use of an app on my phone and tablet called comiXology. A phone app to let me read comic books…mind blown!
Hulk: Gray is a six part adventure featuring Dr Bruce Banner and his angry alter ego. The blurb describes it as a story which “examines in detail the earliest days of the Incredible Hulk”. It is that – the story plays out in the immediate aftermath of the gamma explosion which changed Dr Banner’s life forever. Technically it is a flashback recounting of the events as Banner is chatting to his friend Doc Sampson and trying to explain his side of events.
What initially drew me to Hulk: Gray (other than a love of the character) was the creative due of Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale. I had read, and loved, their Batman series The Long Halloween. Loeb writes a great story and Sale’s artwork really appeals. I do find that some comics can be a bit of a let down for me if I don’t like the art style (Secret Invasion I am looking at you). But Loeb and Sale are a great duo.
Hulk is in a “Hulk Smash” persona. Poor vocab and limited comprehension he just wants to be left alone. But General Ross and the US Army are hot on his tail – particularly when Hulk finds someone to take with him as he escapes the troops…Ross’s daughter Betty. Loeb does a fabulous job of showing how Hulk cannot express Banner’s love for Betty but that Hulk somehow knows that this girl is important to Hulk.
The immediate suspicion of General Ross is quickly put in place and the friendship of Hulk and Rick Jones is established too. For fans there is also an unexpected cameo from another Avenger founding member to enjoy (a meeting which had never been documented prior to this story).
A highly entertaining story from one of the best writing teams of recent times. Hulk: Gray has a lot going for it.
Until next time True Believers, Make Mine Marvel.
Hulk: Gray is a Marvel Comics publication which is available as a single volume Graphic Novel and on Kindle or a Comixology App. Order it here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hulk-Gray-Jeph-Loeb-ebook/dp/B00AAJR0FY/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1492720057&sr=1-1&keywords=hulk+grey