Thankfully, the Inhumans adventures have stopped. Instead, we get a solo adventure featuring The Beast–the dude with big feet and a big brain who was in the original X-Men but wasn’t being used because the mutant book was put on hiatus. But Marvel wanted to make sure they kept the characters current, so they put Gerry Conway on the case. And Gerry came up with a great idea.
Make him gray and hairy!
The story starts with Beast already hairy, and we (the readers) see him skulking around a genetic research facility.
We don’t know who this hairy character is, and he looks evil.
We learn gradually that this is Hank McCoy.
We learn that after the X-Men, Hank got a great job…but then he got this way by experimenting on himself.
Conway introduces his self-hatred (which will be a motif for the character) is apparent immediately, and then offers flashbacks…
We also learn that his assistant at the new job was a babe.
He fell for her.
But she was a spy.
Conway and Sutton do a good job of looking back over the history of the character and explaining his metamorphosis. This is a great “second origin” or reboot/rebirth story.
And the tale ends with him going off into the world, angry, without the possibility of a cure.
Also, Beast in this issue is working for The Brand Corporation. It’s the first time this company appears, and it will end up being a major competitor to Stark International.
I blow hot and cold with Gerry Conway, but this is one of his best stories.
Here’s a cute little cartoon.