Writer: Al Ewing
Art: Aaron Kuder, Frank Martin, and Erick Arciniega
Publisher: MARVEL COMICS
Release Date: December 16th, 2020
The IMMORTAL HULK is in an awful position. Half of his alter egos/ personalities are dead or nonexistent… including Bruce Banner. And as if things couldn’t get any worse, the Leader’s got the remainder of the leftover personas on the ropes. Nevertheless, Joe Fixit is still there and HULK fans all know too well that Joe can take care of himself pretty darn well. Let’s smash into KING IN BLACK: IMMORTAL HULK #1 and see if Joe Fixit will make this one of the best Holidays the Hulk has ever had even if he has to fight his way through a sea of symbiotes.
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These types of issues are incredibly hard to review. Now, it’s not because it’s a KING IN BLACK tie in. Ultimately, that isn’t what this issue is at all. There is absolutely no reason to buy this issue if you’re a KING IN BLACK or VENOM fan at all. You’ll easily keep pace with the main event without this title. If anything, this is an IMMORTAL HULK Holiday Special. However, what makes this issue difficult to review is that it has no words and no conversations. The story leans heavily on Aaron Kuder to guide readers through the narrative, which he does pretty well. But, what assistance does Al Ewing deliver to this week’s tale?
Now, I’m sure Ewing contributes more than words. He develops the overall premise, plot, and idea. However, the true storytelling of this issue hangs its hat on Aaron Kuder, Frank Martin, and Erick Arciniega. So, if I’m grading this issue solely on its art and how well I can decipher the story without word balloons and conversation, this team does a stellar job. The story is incredibly easy to follow, straightforward, and comprehensive. That said, a few of Hulk’s facial expressions were a bit too childish at some points and didn’t work for me. Now, I understand what he was going for and that was genuinely the purpose of this “Holiday Special”. But, those childish facial expressions made some moments feel almost comical and cartoonish at points. Furthermore, the panel progressions and sequences that Kuder and his team laid out made the story flow extremely well. The action was almost organic and worked well within the story.
If you can “Believe in Father Christmas” as Greg Lake does, you’ll love this IMMORTAL HULK Christmas Spectacular because that’s exactly what this is. Sure, there are symbiotes and Joe takes a stab at fixing the problem. However, this issue has practically nothing to do with KING IN BLACK. So, the fan in me wants to get angry at Marvel for making this a cash grab on the KING IN BLACK name. Nonetheless, if the issue was titled something different and more fitting, would I score it better? My point: grading it solely on it being classified as a Christmas Special for a character and series I adore, it’s rock solid. Looking at this issue as a KING IN BLACK tie in just doesn’t work for me. So, I’m going to choose to be positive and grade it like a Holiday Special and therefore recommend you give it a chance. It was fun, entertaining, creative, and worth the buy this Holiday season. Give it a look and let me know what you think.
If you want to get your hands on this week’s issue of KING IN BLACK: IMMORTAL HULK #1, click the Amazon link HERE. Additionally, if IMMORTAL HULK related titles are your jam, click HERE to grab the latest titles. Or, if you’re intrigued by the KING IN BLACK event, click HERE! And finally, if you’re looking for something else to read, check out my Amazon Online Comic Shop by clicking HERE. Thank you all for the read and continued support. Stay safe and stay healthy.
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