Writer: Al Ewing
Art: Ryan Bodenheim and Paul Mounts
Release Date: July 17th, 2019
As the smoke from last issue clears, General Fortean makes a fateful decision in this week’s all-new THE IMMORTAL HULK #21 by Al Ewing. Shadow Base is ready for war and no weapon is off the table. Let’s smash into this issue to see how what General Fortean is really up too!
WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD!!!
Al Ewing is a masterful storyteller and this issue once again proves that beautifully. Somehow, an issue that focused on retconning General Fortean into the Hulk landscape since the beginning, drew this reviewer into the comic and ultimately made the character interesting and credible. How does Ewing do it? How does he make a pit stop/ informative issue so dang good without a true appearance from the Hulk? Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Ewing is truly doing something special with the Hulk and finding new ways each week to reel fans into the story. This run really is something special.
Readers probably didn’t see this issue coming at all. Remember, we left off last issue basically staring down Hell, Banner’s Pops, and Metatron. This issue opens with this reviewer actually feeling disappointed that we aren’t starting where we left off. However, even the parts that were a bit wordy were still interesting, thought out, and dynamic. Ewing incorporated the history of General Ross and intertwined it with Fortean’s own background wonderfully. Additionally, Ewing creates a teleportation suit while amplifying the sheer intelligence of Reed Richards making what Fortean is doing so much more plausible, destructive, and chaotic. Fans get explanations and reasoning that is often times missing in comics today.
On top of all this reviewer mentioned above, the most sensationally extraordinary elements didn’t truly occur until almost the end of the issue. Ewing’s narrative takes a brutally maniacal turn as Fortean becomes a sadistic tyrant whose views become so insanely warped by his fascination with structure, normalcy, peace, and harmony that he’s willing to murder whoever it takes to accomplish his distorted views. Fortean lays waste to Gamma Flight after infiltrating their base with his teleportation suit, takes back the husk of the new Abomination, and willingly joins with the suit following in his mentor’s footsteps (Ross becoming Red Hulk). This scene totally blindsided this reviewer and left me super excited for the next issue.
For an informative issue, Ewing still creatively told a powerful story that felt important, carried weight, and had twists that this reviewer didn’t see coming. This reviewer started the issue wondering about Hell, the Hulk, and Metatron… got no answers to any of those questions.. but still left eager for the next issue after a simple backstory of a character that never really existed until a couple of months ago. Ewing is smashingly good in this series and appears that he can do no wrong right now. The only problem with the issue was that there was practically no Hulk in the comic. But again, it was still phenomenal without him. What does that say about the writer? This reviewer highly recommends the issue and the series. If you’re hearing about THE IMMORTAL HULK now, you’re a little late to the party. Lucky for you, everyone’s welcome!