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3.8 out of 5 stars11
3.8 out of 5 stars
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The story running through issues #1-6 of Hulk (from 2007/8), is collected, Hulk Volume 1: Red Hulk TPB: Red Hulk v. 1 (Graphic Novel Pb). The story opens with a SHIELD team consisting of Iron Man, Maria Hill, Thunderbolt Ross, Doctor Samson and the She-Hulk investigating the murder of the Abomination, who was apparently beaten senseless by the Hulk - or a reasonable facsimile thereof, as Bruce Banner has imprisoned in a SHIELD facility somewhere since the end of World War Hulk - and then shot with a Hulk-sized gun, which is available from SHIELD's supply department. Unfortunately, this occurred in Russia, and the Red Guard turn up and invite the team to leave. There is the usual scuffle, started this time by Doc Samson - a clue to further plot development later in the story - before peace is restored, and a survivor from the destroyed village they are standing in is found, who keeps repeating the (Russian) word "red"...

THE SPOILER ZONE
The story then proceeds through a series of episodes where the Red Hulk pops up and punches someone out, while the mystery of his identity is slowly penetrated.

Issue #2 sees a fight on the SHIELD helicarrier with She-Hulk and Iron Man beaten by big Red, and the carrier brought down over New York, leading into...

Issue #3, which sees Rick Jones as the `Blue Hulk' - A-Bomb - battle the Red Hulk on the old Gamma Base where Bruce Banner is imprisoned... with a few Harpies joining in to even the odds.

Issue #4 has the Green Hulk emerge from his prison just in time for the Watcher to arrive and get flattened by big Red. We then get a big Hulk on Hulk battle, which ends on top of the Golden Gate Bridge. In the background, SHIELD finds agent Clay Quartermain dead, and evidence pointing to Leonard Samson being the Red Hulk...

Issue #5 sees the mighty Thor arrive in San Francisco to intercept the Red Hulk. Their battle finishes on the Moon, from which the Red Hulk jumps back to Earth, triggering the San Andres fault. Meanwhile Iron Man has been investigating further into the identity of the Red Hulk, but is interrupted by the West-Coast crisis. He rounds up a team of big guns and heads for San Francisco, where A-Bomb has just rescued the Green Hulk from the bottom of the bay...

Issue #6 sees the big gun team set-to to rescue San Francisco while the Hulk sets off to finish his battle with big Red in Monument Valley, with Thor and A-Bomb turning up to watch. After the battle, we see the two prime candidates for the identity of the Red Hulk walking around at the same time as the Red Hulk, just to confuse us...

These issues were an entertaining read, with excellent art and scripting, and the various guest characters behaving in-character. The mystery of the Red Hulk's identity is not revealed however, and we are none the wiser a to the how and why of it all...
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Collecting Hulk #1-6, written by Jeph Loeb and drawn by Ed McGuiness this volume starts Hulk. When the abomination is killed by an unknown in Russia, the Hulk is initially blamed; who else has size 20's and emits gamma radiation? But with a bit of investigation and a subsequent attack on the Avenger's helicarrier, it's clear this can't be the Hulk, but if it's not him, who is it?

An entertaining showdown including some classic characters. Also thrown in is the back-story from Wolverine #50 - a classic. Recommended for Hulk fans!
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on 23 October 2009
Having been a fan and avid reader of the 'mean grean' in my younger days I found myself hankering once more for some Gamma Irradiated escapism. I eventually succumbed to temptation with this and was glad I did!
Although a collection of 6 issues of the monthly title, it works well as a book/graphic novel. Far better in fact than the next volume in the series which I bought from Amazon at the same time (see separate review). It was pretty perfect as a 're-entry point' for someone like me who hadn't read a Hulk Comic for years and therefore knew most of the main characters but had little knowledge of recent events in the Marvel Universe.
It's a great premise, with the mystery of the red hulk (I refuse to refer to him as 'RULK', whoever let that idea through?), his origins and his purpose defintately capturing the imagination and the many questions and surprises generated by this volume only fuelled my desire to read the next installment, which is what it is of course meant to do.
I was raised on the likes of John Byrne, Peter David Dale Keown, Gary Frank etc and so if I was nitpicking I could say that the art, while of high quality feels a bit too cartoony and therefore not quite as emotive as it could be. Also, in some cases it feels that while Jeff Loebb makes 'nods' to history (having Clay Quartermain an agent of shield for example or the grey hulk appearing in the next volume) they sometimes feel like token jestures because of their context (none of Clay's past involvement with the hulk is mentioned). So while not quite perfect, great nonetheless.
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on 11 March 2009
There was a point in time when the writings of Jeph Loeb were engrossing, fun, and deserving of high praise. But as a new crop of talented writers such as Mark Millar and Geoff Johns redefine comics storytelling for a new generation, Loeb seems to be regressing to tales with poor pacing and hackneyed dialogue. The man who received critical acclaim at the dawn of the millennium for works such as Superman for All Seasons and Batman: The Long Halloween now offers up this muddled, ill-conceived storyline unworthy of the Green Goliath.

To state that this was an awful story is giving it too much credit. Frankly, there is NO story. Loeb, in the span of the 6 issues collected in this volume, manages to offer artist Ed McGuinness a two-page spread every few pages that showcases the red or green Hulk punching someone. I finished this "collection" in under 25 minutes and was left amazed at how poorly executed this sad chapter in Hulk's life was. The mysterious Red Hulk might have potential as a major villain, but it is NOT showcased here. What follows in the course of this book are pages with very minimal dialogue and a lot of splash pages meant to highlight McGuinness' ability to draw outrageously muscled characters. This type of pandering to an artist is a reoccurring trend with Loeb, but this is probably the most egregious example. At one point, 7 whole pages are dedicated to the Hulk climbing up a bridge after being tossed into the water below! I can't imagine the frustration that readers felt collecting the individual monthly issues, as it couldn't have been more than a 5 minute read.

Other Marvel superheroes are present in abundance in this tale but do absolutely nothing except prattle on about how the Red Hulk must be stopped or act as punching bags for him. Again, nothing resembling a cognizant, worth-while addition to the Hulk mythos is found in this amateurish tale. The only reason that I even gave it 2 stars is because of the striking art of Ed McGuinness. If ever there was an artist meant to draw the Hulk, it would be him. But stellar art cannot save this poorly executed farce from the mind of a writer who, for some reason, is Marvel's current "go-to" writer. Loeb's next major story involves Spider-Man and a team-up with former Gen 13 artist Jeffrey Scott Campbell. No doubt another crudely written story crafted around showcasing an artist's skills will be the norm once again. For far better Hulk books, check out Planet Hulk,World War Hulk, or some classic stories featured in the Peter David Incredible Hulk Visionaries collections.
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on 10 October 2015
Great GN and a must for any hulk fan. Artwork is great and the story is superb.
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VINE VOICEon 19 December 2008
Excellent fun and Ed McGuiness produces big, colourful, chunky characters. There are also guest stars galore (Thor, Iron man, She hulk) as the red hulk cuts a path through the marvel universe, eventually butting heads with the green goliath. Whilst this volume is self contained, we'll need to keep on reading to find out more about the new hulk so don't expect to find any answers here. The story itself is quite linear and straight forward (just what Jeph Loeb is good at)so don't expect any deep plotlines. There is also a really short back-up tale featuring wolverine as well as a gallery of the varient covers for the first 6 issues. Simple yet fun.
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on 6 November 2010
A very enjoyable comic. Not particularly deep or anything that you won't have seen before.
The artwork is very good.
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on 25 February 2010
The premise of this Hulk vs. Red Hulk graphic novel I thought was very promising, one hulk versus the other I thought to myself 'excellent'. What I got was nothing of the sort, it felt like I was reading a child's picture book, there was very very little dialect in this. To say I was disappointed is an understatement, the art work was a positive but the only one, this could have been a really good series but sadly wasn't.

Having gone from Planet Hulk & World War Hulk this is very much a let down.
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on 9 July 2014
Hulk smash
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on 23 December 2008
A good effort from Loeb & McGuinness, reminiscent of their Batman / Superman work in that it's pretty straightforward superhero-ing, very fast paced with suitably chunky artwork but I was disappointed that there was no reveal at the end of this volume. Hope we won't have to read another six issues before finding out the full story behind Red Hulk. Great price from Amazon though!
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