INCREDIBLE HULK #149-150 (1972): Guest starring X-Men

While Steve Englehart was busy making Beast interesting in the pages of Amazing Adventures, the other X-Men came to help Hulk celebrate his 150th issue. 

Issue #149 doesn’t have much to it. The only real point is to show Hulk escaping the clutches of General Ross (again).

He fights an alien and breaks out of his prison cell and then in #150, he escapes the entire base.

Meanwhile, in the desert, Polaris and Havok are fighting a biker gang…

Havok has apparently been hiding out in Arizona. Polaris sought her out. She is trying to get Havok to come back to the X-team, but he’s still worried he can’t control his powers (which is where we left him when X-Men was cancelled). 

Iceman comes and they fight over Lorna.

Hulk happens by. Seeing she has green hair, he momentarily thinks she is Jarella.

But she’s not, of course.

I like the way he misunderstands her green hair, and then blames her for his own misunderstanding. It’s the kind of small-thinking, victim-mentality that makes the most sense of this character. On the other hand, it’s hard to tell what Hulk’s mental capacity truly is. Hulk is alternately too smart to be a brute, and too much of a brute to be smart.

He’s also got a serious victim complex–it’s borderline narcissism the way he assumes everyone is out to get him. He makes that assumption then clobbers things. Which of course makes it a self-fulfilling assumption.

Hulk lifts a mountain (with Lorna on top).

Yeah, it’s a lot like this…

Havok then has to stop Hulk from inadvertently killing Lorna, and displays what I consider a new power: Mind control.

Hulk turns into Banner. Note that Havok being able to have psionic effect is not used again, to my knowledge.

It ends with Bruce in Betty’s arms.

Interesting that Bruce is crying for Jarella–not Hulk.

Issue #150 is a strong issue. Good characterizations, and a nice check-in with two characters who don’t have their own comic right now and, even when they did, were too new to be very well developed.

2 thoughts on “INCREDIBLE HULK #149-150 (1972): Guest starring X-Men”

  1. Mr. Ekko is correct: “The Incredible Hulk”#150 is not just an uncommonly strong ( npi ) issue of this series, it is EASILY one of the most memorable. Fifty-one years later, I can still recall this issue as if I had just read it yesterday. Even if, at the time, I fell for the deliberate gimmick of mistaking Lorna Dane on the cover for Jarella. ( as we were all supposed to, of course – “Why is Jarella white, now-?? Must have been a colorist mistake!” ) This issue is packed with so much drama it’s, well, incredible. From Havok nearly killing the Iceman, ( Hey! He HAD been ASKING for it!! ) to the legendary showdown in the desert, which still grips me to this very day, this is one of the great Marvel Comics. I had forgotten, though, that artist Herb Trimpe, while not one of the superstars of the industry, nevertheless draws some pretty cute girls, as evidenced by his renditions of Lorna Dane and Betty Ross. I would at this time, however, like to take umbrage with Mr. Ekko’s assertion that Havok is displaying a hitherto-undisplayed power by burning the Hulk’s mind with a fine-point plasma-beam. There are no psionics involved here at all. Havok simply overcame the Hulk with a highly-concentrated application of the power that he already has. Mr. Ekko must have been confused by Trimpe’s interpretation of what was actually happening. Rest assured, Havok doesn’t command psionic ability. As he puts it himself, “All ( my ) power is good for is to destroy.” Well, he’s right about that, but in the X-Men’s line of work, that’s not a bad thing. If I had my choice of mutant super-ability, I’d go with a totally destructive power like that of Havok or Cyclops as opposed to a more “passive” power, such as those possessed by relatively-useless X-Men like Shadowcat and Doug Ramsey. But Havok doesn’t possess any secret heretofore unknown superpowers. Ekko is simply misinterpreting the situation. But, all in all, “Cry Hulk! Cry Havok!” was a great entry into the X-Men’s “Hidden Years” period, and successfully whetted my appetite at the time for the return of the X-Men, which we finally got just three years later, but, unfortunately, in a mutated, politically-correct form. Oh well. At least they were back, in SOME form. Mr. Ekko gives “Cry Hulk! Cry Havok!” a C+ – that’s being a little stingy with an issue of this level of strength- ( npi ) I’m giving it a full-blown “A”!!! Yeah, baby! Marvel Comics like they’re supposed to be!!


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