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Totally Awesome Hulk becomes Incredible Hulk as it starts its Legacy arc
- Spoiler: show
- Cho is in an isolation satellite quarantining himself because he has been losing control of the Hulk side of his personality. He receives a distress call however from Sakaar. He cannot resist playing the hero so he travels to the planet, though the wormhole he passes through to get there weakens him. He is approached by a group of aliens called the Doka'abi Clan, led by priestess Maeera. She welcomes the Green Scar back to Sakaar; he says that wasn't him but when they ask if he is the Hulk is replies yes as he technically is. The defender of the clan, Headman Bahng, tells Hulk it is time to run the Gauntlet. Cho then realizes they are surrounded by an army of marauders who apparently serve this land's king who is only known as Warlord. Apparently in the aftermath of Banner defeating the Red King things have not exactly gone well on the planet. The clan now needs Hulk to be their champion to fight for their lives before the Warlord. Cho eventually agrees to this and they celebrate him as the Worldbreaker. He says he is not here to break their world but Maeera says they need him to. His last meal is brought to him but he gives it to hungry children. Meanwhile we see a brief scene at the Warlord's tower where he sits in shadows as slaves fight to the death for his pleasure and he himself is hailed as the Worldbreaker. The next day Hulk dons some cobbled together armor and a sword and shield, then heads into an arena. To his horror three people are sacrificed before the battle. Then it starts and he is attacked by men on flying bikes and some kind of tentacled monster. He is distracted when spectators get hurt and gets stabbed with a spear. We then see the mental metaphor of the Hulk personality getting out of the trunk and taking the wheel of his car. He goes berserk.
I actually have never read the original Planet Hulk story so this is all new to me. It seems pretty cool. Definitely a very strong Mad Max vibe. I imagine the Warlord is going to be someone we are supposed to recognize (though if from the original story I won't lol)
Something that really makes this issue shine is that this might possibly be the greatest work Greg Land has ever done. You could take Pak's words out and this would still be a good issue. The art is just fantastic (with inks by Leisten and colors by D'Armata). Though it does have certain Land quirks people might complain about like his famous shining smiles (which colored white seem strange in a desert wasteland lol)
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"If life were a picnic, you'd be a family. Since life is war, you're soldiers. You'd do well to start accepting that fact."--Nathan Summers
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I feel like TAHulk really benefited from the Weapon X crossover (more than Weapon X did at least) and I like the threat here. Amadeus' main flaw is his confidence, often spilling into arrogance. The idea that he could always control the Hulk was foolish at best - and I'm glad that we're finally seeing that slip up some more. I'm actually afraid for Amadeus, as he's clearly so driven NOT to turn into a Banner-Hulk-Monster-Type, and I feel like the book has been missing that tension.
That said, I could have SWORN that Sakaar was destroyed at the end of Skaar: Son of the Hulk. How is it back? This story clearly takes place after the Planet Hulk storyline and doesn't reference anything that happened in Skaar: SotH. So I don't think this is accidental time travel through a wormhole. Was Sakaar restored due to the events of the Secret War? Will this be a plot point or is this going to be a hand waving "Don't think about it too hard?" moment?
Continuity issues aside, I like the revamp of Sakaar. The Mad Max feel is great, and should help play into Amadeus' more tech-driven side. Given that he just went through a major arc where he didn't want to kill people, I'm looking forward with seeing him struggle to survive on Sakaar. I didn't recognize the Warlord at all.
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Cable you should definitely go back and read Planet Hulk, it's fantastic.
Agreed that this was some of Greg Land's best work in a long time. If you go way back to his early days on stuff like Sojurn, Land's work was a lot more stylized. Somewhere in there though in his style changed or he got lazy, and became the magazine-posing Land we mostly all dislike around here. This struck me as a return to his former days. It probably helped that he can't copy or lift directly from sources if he's mostly drawing Hulk and a bunch of aliens.
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