Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Fall of the Hulks Alpha #1
Parker & Pelletier
Fall of the Hulks Alpha marks the opening of the Hulk crossover and event for the next few months. If you haven’t followed Hulk much lately you’ll find there are a lot of characters running around the two titles (Hulk and Incredible Hulk) that seem to have similar powers as the Hulk. Many of them go by some variation of the name Hulk or are some sort of offspring of the original green Hulk. I suppose it only makes sense to put together some sort of storyline that involves taking them all down. This issue may mark the beginning but contains virtually none of any of the Hulks. In some ways this makes the comic that much better. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this comic as the thought of another Hulk event had me rolling my eyes when I read the solicitation a few months ago. This comic was enjoyable enough that I may actually stick around to find out what happens in the next issue.
The comic is a simple story. A group of villains unite a long time ago and this chronicles how they manage to stay in touch and do some work together over the decades of Marvel continuity. Many of the past forty years of the mainstream Marvel comic’s stories are mentioned in some form of another. The story idea works well because the execution is seamless in terms of weaving this relationship throughout the existing continuity. It works without any sort of time travel gimmick by keenly picking its spots where to insert this group of villains.
The group starts and ends with the Leader. He manages to bring on board an interesting cast consisting of Red Ghost, Wizard, Mad Thinker and later on Doctor Doom and Modok. The opening to the comic goes through step by step how the Leader manages to recruit each villain to work with him. They aren’t all about destroying the world, but the agendas match up enough that they work together.
The rest of the comic book walks through the decades of stories that this crew had a hand in. Eventually they look for a replacement member to the crew, which is Modok. Modok was involved in some of the red Hulk’s story, which now fits him into both situations enough to plant the seeds for the take down of the Hulks.
The story really doesn’t have a lot to do with the Hulk or even the villains constantly scheming to remove him. Instead, there is this underlying feeling about the Hulk that’s sort of ignored until events keep piling up that leaves them no choice but to deal with him.
The group of characters in the comic are introduced and given enough background that they all feel familiar very early on in the issue. However, even if you find that not to be enough, each character’s handbook page is reprinted in the back of the comic, which is a welcome addition to the comic.
The artwork is tremendous. The quality is such that the story crosses generation after generation never losing that relevant and up to date form. The recreation of some of the events that are some thirty years old could have been very tricky to reproduce, but this comic’s look feels perfect and timeless. When you have a story dancing across a few decades with a liter of characters that is this clean then you know you have something special.
Now that we understand who is behind what will be the Fall of the Hulks and we seem to understand why they want to take them down it will make picking up the second issue of this event a little easier. When you consider some of the Hulk stories have felt so directionless over the last two years or so this was a breath of fresh air. I definitely recommend picking this up for someone interested in following this crossover, especially if you like Doctor Doom or some of the other villains as they portrayed flawlessly.
4 out of 5 geek goggles