Review: The Incredible Hulk #131

The Incredible Hulk #131 cover
Cover by Herb Trimpe

The Incredible Hulk #131
Published and © by Marvel, September 1970

Title: “A Titan Stalks the Tenements!”
Synopsis: The Hulk and Bruce Banner have been separated – a condition Iron Man and the U.S. Army want to reverse!

Writer: Roy Thomas
Penciler: Herb Trimpe
Inker: John Severin

Review: Never a fan of the Hulk or Herb Trimpe’s art, this reviewer was quite surprised by this enjoyable issue. Roy Thomas’ story is decent if a bit dated; the character interaction hasn’t aged well, but the basic plot remains workable. The real surprise here is Trimpe’s impressively strong outing. Sure, the excellent inking from John Severin certainly helps, but the journeyman penciler deserves credit for distinct rendering and strong, clear storytelling. Together, the art team’s work has a cool, almost undergroundish style – quite fitting for this series, really.

Grade: B

Second opinion: “John Severin … settles in as inker over Trimpe’s pencils to create one of the more-classic artistic teams on the Hulk.” – Phil Mateer, Comics Buyer’s Guide Presents: Hulk, 2003

Cool factor: The art team of Herb Trimpe and John Severin.

Notable: First appearance of the Hulk’s new sidekick Jim Wilson (Sam “The Falcon” Wilson’s nephew). … This issue’s “Stan’s Soapbox” includes notice that Jack Kirby has “unexpectedly announced his resignation from our surprised but stalwart little staff.” Goodbye, Silver Age; hello Bronze!

Character quotable: “Without trying to sound noble – it’s not my own safety I’m worried about – it’s the world’s!” – Bruce Banner, drama queen

Editor’s note: This review was originally published by Comics Bronze Age on Sept. 28, 2012.

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