INCREDIBLE HULK #199-205 (1976)

Hulk is up to his usual nonsense, and Nick Fury captures him using Doc Samson and SHIELD troops led by Clay Quartermain. It takes all of #199, and this would be cool if it weren’t a constantly repeating plot point.

From there, it’s the #200 “spectacular,” which begins with Hulk having Banner’s brain. There’s no explanation for this, but he’s wearing a helmet. Why doesn’t he just wear this all the time?

It it because it looks dumb?

The whole reason for this is to shrink Hulk down so he can go fight his way through General Talbot’s brain. Yes, that’s dumb. And while there, he fights a ton of illusion characters–so those guest stars promised on the cover never actually appear.

And to make matters worse, Hulk doesn’t stop shrinking. So we get, YET AGAIN, a series of issues where he’s going to various sub-atomic worlds.

We start with #201, where Hulk fights Conan. OK, not really.  It’s “Kronak the Barbarian.”  But this is clearly an attempt to get readers interested in reading about a shirtless, sword-wielding barbarian at a time when Marvel was launching a Conan comic.

Hulk’s adventures in the microverse continue as he inevitably reaches Jarella’s world. 


While there, he gets hypnotized by Psyklop into fighting Jarella’s tribe. 

Her team of spellcasters ultimately free him from Psyklop’s thrall and, just as he and Jarella are reuinited, Doc Samson returns him to normal size.  Since Jarella is with him, she also gets pulled up onto Earth.  And in the process of right-sizing him, Jarella’s world is destroyed.  That’s a good twist.

So now she’s stuck here, and the two try to form an ongoing relationship. 

It doesn’t last long. Crypto Man returns…

Hulk hits him…

But Jarella dies in the battle.

It’s kind of a rushed ordeal. I would have loved to have seen more of this. But back in the 1980s they didn’t do long, decompressed arcs. Instead, they hit the high points and returned the character to the status quo for the next story. Too bad. I feel like we missed out here.


Again, lots of familiar ideas here–but they’re done very well. I was torn how to rate this, and I’m going with a B-.

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