Sure, there’s something you see every day! Captain America riding a T-Rex. Now I’ll be honest, I wasn’t really a fan of the original Planet Hulk event that Marvel did years ago, but I’ve only been an on-again-off-again Hulk fan for a very long time. Casting Hulk leading an entire planet of Hulks isn’t really my thing, Hulk is something best taken in small doses so I really wasn’t sure what to expect here. I just knew it was yet another spin-off of Secret Wars and decided what the heck?
So I leap into this five-issue mini that explores some of the aftermath of Secret Wars and asks, can you ever really have too much Hulk?
When Captain America wins in the battlegrounds with his partner Devil Dinosaur, God Doom decides to send him on a mission to Greenland, where the Red Hulk leads as a merciless king, mining Vibranium and ruling with an iron, gamma-irradiated fist. But Captain America is really out to rescue Bucky, who he’s told is being held by the Red Hulk. Can Steve Rogers make his way into the middle of the Mud Kingdom and save the day?
Well, yes and no. Along the way, he runs into Doctor Green, a cultured Hulk adventurer and together they make their way through the gamma-irradiated landscape, past all of the “hulk” creatures, until I was really sick and tired of hearing the word. I mean “hulk-this” and “hulk-that” going “hulk-here” and “hulk-there”, it was like watching the Smurfs, just all in green. It was a little overdone, in my opinion.
What also didn’t work for me was Captain America finding out that Bucky has been dead the whole time, that God Doom only sent him to kill the Red Hulk because everyone he’d sent before had failed. And when he succeeds, after finding that his entire quest has been in vain, he just jumps on his dinosaur and rides off into the sunset, that’s more than a little anticlimactic if you ask me. And unfortunately, there is so much time spent with Cap and Doc Hulk travelling along, fighting monsters, it’s more like a road movie than a real adventure. It isn’t until the last issue that they actually get anywhere and it’s over far too quickly. So now what is Steve going to do? What will the Hulks do now that their king is dead? We just don’t know and no hints are given.
Art-wise, everything is great. Marc Laming and Jordan Boyd do a very good job making everything look hulky, I have absolutely no complaints on that front. I just wish that the story was a little more focused on the resolution instead of the journey. Plus, the whole Planet Hulk title is a complete misnomer because it not only doesn’t take place on an entire planet of Hulks, it has nothing whatsoever to do with the previous Planet Hulk event. It was just a marketing event.
I guess it’s one of the more average Secret Wars tie-ins that I’ve read and therefore, it gets an average score. It should have been better. It could have been better. It just wasn’t.