If the folks at Marvel are publishing anything resembling a pure horror title, it comes in the form of the Immortal Hulk. Written by Al Ewing, working with a plethora of strong artists, the series takes an extremely dark dive into the psyche of Bruce Banner and the various Hulk personas that are part of him. While Banner has always been a sympathetic character, lost in a seemingly uncontrollable circumstance, Ewing’s current run increases the angst and smashing in a way I haven’t read in some time.
The Immortal Hulk Volume 5: Breaker of Worlds
Writer: Al Ewing
In the latest collection, we are given the back story of General Fortean, the now covert army opp determined to take down Banner, along with his various Hulk family members (Betty Ross; yes, she’s now got Gamma running through her), Doc Samson, and a not quite dead Rick Jones. To do so, Fortean travels to Alpha Flight’s space headquarters, where he managed to nearly kill Gamma Flight members The Absorbing Man, Titania and Puck. The only member that seems to be permanently downed is Walter Langkowski, aka Sasquatch, though Puck is confident that his longtime teammate will eventually recover from death.
There’s a lot happening in The Immortal Hulk Volume 5: Breaker of Worlds, some of which made my head spin, and I’ve been reading the book from the beginning. There are significant amounts of violence and gore to found throughout the book, especially once Fortean merges with the body of the Abomination, but to really make sense of what’s going on here, you’ve got to go back and reread at least the previous collection, Abomination.
Ultimately, Al Ewing has been writing a grander story that needs to be consumed in close sittings to be fully appreciated. That means anybody who has not been onboard The Immortal Hulk since day one is going to be severely lost, and even if you have, you’ll likely need to head back to the beginning to fully appreciate the scope and story.