World Wark Hulk II begins as Amadeus Cho returns to Earth with new ideas on how to be a better Hulk. But is Cho really in charge?
The newest arc in writer Greg Pak’s epic tale of Amadeus Cho AKA the totally awesome Hulk gets off to a good start from the opening page. Pak’s quick pacing really gets the story moving as Hulk arrives back on Earth and immediately gets to work on his plans.
In doing so, Pak brings in a number of other heroes from the Marvel universe, including fellow Champions Spider-Man and Ms. Marvel, who are all trying to assess just what Hulk’s plans are. Unfortunately for them, they aren’t quite ready for his (literal) blockbuster entrance.
While Pak’s writing is great, hinting at psychological drama between Cho and his Hulk persona, along with nailing the characters he brings to the page (Black Panther’s “Tch” is so perfect), this really does feel like the Carlos Barberi and Walden Wong show.
Barberi does a wonderful job capturing Hulk’s swaggering presence when he singlehandedly fixes a collapsing bridge using his strength in a strategic manner. And a massive fight in the second half of the issue has crunching brutality thanks to Barberi’s framing highlighting Cho’s precision. Wong’s inks give the book a clean look, which heightens the intensity of the action once the book really gets going.
Color artist Frank D’Armata uses blues and oranges nicely in the background; the clear blue sky makes Hulk and Prince Phalkan pop off the page with the green and red. The total effect is that the book draws the reader’s eyes without being overly flashy.
If there is one place that The Incredible Hulk #714 falls short, it’s the interplay between Cho and Hulk. In a single page early in the issue, Greg Pak effectively establishes that it is Hulk who is in the lead while Cho is locked away in a psychological trunk. The issue never builds on this, only showing Cho again on the final page. As it stands, it feels like there’s some development left out of the book. It would have been nice to see Cho’s reaction to Hulk’s behavior in more detail or to have simply saved the reveal for the end.
Is It Good?
A slight misstep in the story aside, The Incredible Hulk #714 has fantastic artwork by Carlo Barberi, Walden Wong, and Frank D’Armata and Greg Pak’s script sets up what should be a fantastic arc. The Cho-Hulk run has been a wonderful exploration of the character and of Hulk’s place in the Marvel Universe, and it’ll be nice to see what surprises Pak has in store as he brings back some recurring rivals for Hulk to take down.