The Savage She-Hulk 1 (February 1980)

The Savage She-Hulk #1

It's not a good comic, but one's got to admire Stan Lee's ability to get a property established here in the first issue of The Savage She-Hulk. He introduces a new character in Jennifer Walters and manages to change her into She-Hulk before the end of the comic. He doesn't even waste time showing Walters's cousin, Dr. Bruce Banner, hulk out. Banner guest stars, the Hulk doesn't.

Banner's not a very smart guy; Jennifer becomes She-Hulk thanks to a blood transfusion Banner administers himself. He's supposed to be an expert in gamma radiation and its side effects. Maybe if Stan had just had Bruce think about the possibility, instead of skipping town once his part in the issue's done.

As for Jennifer and She-Hulk? Besides having some snappy dialogue and a job, Lee doesn't give her any character.

The John Buscema and Chic Stone is energetic, but otherwise rather unimpressive.



The She-Hulk Lives; writer, Stan Lee; pencillers, John Buscema and Chic Stone; inker, Stone; editor, Jim Shooter; publisher, Marvel Comics.

The Wicked + The Divine 3 (August 2014)

The Wicked + The Divine #3

Something is a little off this issue. Gillen has maybe run out of establishing stuff to do and he’s getting underway with the actual story. This young woman investigating the gods and just happening to see some amazing stuff like a god-fight.

The fight, which is full of banter between the gods, is just filler. Gillen’s strengths on the comic clearly aren’t going to be the investigative scenes and this issue doesn’t have much besides those. Except the protagonist and her sidekick recapping what they know at the end. It doesn’t go over well either.

A lot of the problem is McKelvie. Most of the issue feels like someone trying to carefully mimic his style and even when it does feel like him… it feels very rushed. And without solid art, Wicked + Divine’s problems start to show. You start looking behind the curtain for the Wizard.

It’s too bad.



Writer, Kieron Gillen; artist, Jamie McKelvie; colorist, Matthew Wilson; letterer, Clayton Cowles; editor, Chrissy Williams; publisher, Image Comics.

The Fury of Firestorm, The Nuclear Man 31 (January 1985)

The Fury of Firestorm, The Nuclear Man #31

George Tuska seems an unlikely guest penciller for Firestorm. He makes the whole thing look like a New Gods comic. But it works. Between Tuska's action-based take on the characters and events and Conway's willingness to cut around through the story, it's an exceptional issue.

In many ways, with Conway shedding the high school stuff and a lot of Martin's science stuff (but this issue does resolve the ex-wife subplot), Firestorm is a lot tighter. Sure, he's basically a supporting cast member in Firehawk's story (Conway really loves tying subplots together), but it works for the comic. It lets Conway do good superhero action without promising actual character development.

There's also the villain, Mindboggler, who gets a nice story arc this issue. Tuska doesn't do a lot of detail on faces, but somehow he and inker Alex Nino get the subtle emotions across.

It's an outstanding, rather unexpectedly produced issue.



A Mind of Her Own…; writer, Gerry Conway; penciller, George Tuska; inker, Alex Nino; colorist, Nansi Hoolahan; letterer, Bob Lappan; editors, Janice Race and Conway; publisher, DC Comics.

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