Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Hulk [2016] #4 - Marvel Comics

HULK No. 4, May 2017
In many ways Mariko Tamaki’s script for Issue Four of “Hulk” doesn’t really get going until after Jennifer Walters leaves an indignant Miss Soef standing in Ryu, Barber, Zucker & Scott's reception area and subsequently steps from out of a yellow cab just “one block from Maise Brewn’s apartment.” True, the Canadian author does beforehand somewhat graphically elaborate upon the worst day in the life of the lawyer’s mutant client as the terrified “human with latent Inhuman lineage” is left within a pool of her own blood by a gang of white-masked assailants, and likewise, touches upon the disappearance of two police detectives who had been investigating the murder of Mister Tick. But essentially both of these sequences are simple ‘window dressing’, designed merely to set the scene for the She-Hulk’s alter-ego to finally pay her timidly insecure customer a visit, and discover just how formidable a tenant the former yoga instructor can really be; “You see it coming. You feel it coming. Not because you can stop it, but because it’s there waiting for you no matter what you do.” 

Indeed, just as soon as the ‘meek and mousy cousin of Bruce Banner’ enters the supposed “only safe place left in this terrible world” and encounters a pair of the dwelling’s less than ‘unfriendly’ inhabitants, this twenty-page periodical’s audience must surely have become irresistibly enthralled by the book’s palpable aura of creepiness. Certainly they can’t not have felt the hairs rise up upon the back of their necks when Maise narrows her eyes at Jen when she is told that her landlord sold her home to some redevelopers several months ago and “there’s not much we can do to stop them”, and resultantly drops her cup of tea whilst telling Walters she is “a bad lawyer!”

Such a wonderful increase in this comic’s tension is equally as well enhanced by Nico Leon’s breakdowns. Arguably somewhat ‘flat’ in places at first, such as the scene in which Bradley’s ‘threatens’ to bring his boss tea and bagels in order to ensure “everyone’s world… got better”, the Córdoba-born artist genuinely ramps up the publication’s ‘fright factor’ by both imbuing Brewn’s fellow tenants with the same all black pupils as she now exhibits, and then drawing the Manhattan resident’s own eyes with a frighteningly haunting red glow…
Writer: Mariko Tamaki, Artist: Nico Leon, and Color Artist: Matt Milla


  1. This is a slow burner, Simon, but it has its hooks in me and won't let go. Tense, creepy and gripping - I'm loving it!

    1. It is rather good Bryan. I don't think I'll be buying it once this particular story has finished, but I certainly have to find out what Maise Brewn is all about.