Tag Archives: The Incredible Hulk

Days of Thunder – November 1973 Defenders #10

Steve Engleart, Author * Sal Buscema, Artist * Frank Bolle, Inker * Tom Orzechowski , Letterer/ P. Goldberg, Colorist * Roy Thomas, Editor
Breakthrough! The Incredible Hulk Vs. The Mighty Thor!
Chapter 9″

Defenders 10

Over the past few issues of The Avengers and The Defenders, various members of the teams have been squaring off in battle. Now at last it is time for the main event: Thor vs. The Hulk. This has been long time coming, after their previous fight back in issue #112 proved inconclusive.

This battle also proves inconclusive.

 

Days of Thunder – October 1973 Avengers #116

Ten Years ago this month, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created… The Mighty Avengers! Today, Steve Englehard and Bob Brown continue the standard of excellence that has always marked Marvel’s mightiest, most exciting group–/Mike Esposito, inker/ John Costanza, letterer/ Petra Goldberg, colorist/ Johnny Romita, art director/ Roy Thomas, editor
“Chapter 2: Betrayal!”

Avengers 116

Dormammu and Loki have tricked the Defenders (currently consisting of Doctor Strange, Namor, the Hulk, Valkyrie, the Silver Surfer, and Hawkeye) into believing that the Evil Eye is the key to releasing the Black Knight from the stone prison that the Enchantress left him in. Now they search for the six scattered parts, guided by Strange’s magic.

Loki is having second thoughts about this plan. He has realized that if Dormammu would succeed in conqueroring Earth’s dimension, he would have the power and the vantage to launch an attack on Asgard. While Loki has no respect for his father’s rule, he does not wish to see his home conquered by an outsider and so he leaves the Dark Dimension in order to warn Thor of the threat to Earth. This is the very first time a Marvel comic has depicted Loki thinking or doing anything that was not entirely selfish and craven.

However, Loki cannot bring himself to be honest and admit culpability for this threat. Instead, he paints the Defenders as villains, seeking the Evil Eye for their own nefarious ends. Given that five of the six Defenders have track records as villains, this is plausible enough. And so the Avengers split up to fight the Defenders and keep them from re-assembling the Evil Eye.

This issue makes it clear that Earth and Asgard are in separate dimensions. The nature of what exactly a dimension is, remains shaky.

Clearly, this entire Avengers/Defenders crossover takes place either before or after Thor’s recent trip into space.

 

Days of Thunder – February 1973 The Defenders #4

“The New Defender!”
A Steve Englehart, author * Sal Buscema, artist bonanza! Frank McLaughlin, inker/ A. Simek, letterer/ Petra Goldberg, colorist/ Roy Thomas, editor

Defenders 4

It seems the Enchantress had little difficulty in freeing herself from Zeus’s custody after the events of Avengers #100. After leaving Olympus, she returned to Earth, and used her powers of enchantment to bend the sometime Avenger Black Knight to her will. The two of them returned to the plane of existence where the Executioner had deserted the Enchantress. She, along with the Black Knight, fought the forces of the Executioner’s new girlfriend, Casiolena, but were overwhelmed and captured.

Over the course of several adventures across several titles, Namor, the king of Atlantis, Doctor Strange, the Sorcerer Supreme, and Hulk, the strongest one there is, have formed an uneasy friendship. The trio have found themselves repeatedly going on adventures together under the name “Defenders”, although they all deny that they are a team. After their most recent adventure, they find themselves before a magic castle, in the company of a young occultist named Barbara, whom they have accidentally driven insane. They wander into the castle, and somehow find themselves teleported to the plane where Casiolena rules.

The three friends, along with Barbara, soon find themselves captured, joining Enchantress and Black Knight in the dungeons. The Enchantress uses her magic to turn Barbara into the Enchantress’s old persona, the Valkyrie. The six superpowered beings combine their might and escape from the dungeon.

Again they fight the forces of Casiolena, and this time it culminates with the Enchantress killing her rival for the Executioner’s affection. With his lover dead, Executioner returns to the Enchantress’ side. The couple teleport away, but not before the Enchantress turns the Black Knight into stone.

Doctor Strange returns his comrades to Earth. The Black Knight remains a living statue, while Barbara remains the Valkyrie, a fusion persona, equal parts madwoman, warrior, ultra-feminist, and villain. First, she breaks Aragorn, the artificially created pegasus of the Black Knight. and then she asks to join the Defenders, only to be told that not only is the Defenders not a team, but that she would not be powerful enough to join if it were.

 

Days of Thunder – September 1968 Avengers King-Size Special! #2

“…And The Rushing River…”
Perhaps the most incredible Avengers thriller yet, presented with pride by: Stan Lee – Editor/ Roy Thomas – Writer/ Don Heck, Werner Roth} Artists/ Vince Colletta – Inker/ Joe Rosen- Letterer/ Honorary Avengers All!!

Avengers king 2

While Thor has been fighting the Mangog, Captain America and the Avengers, currently consisting of Goliath, Wasp, Hawkeye, and the Black Panther, have been meddling with time travel. They now return to what they believe to be the present day, only to discover that the world that they have returned to is not the world from which they left. In the timestream they now find themselves in, the original Avengers, consisting of Thor, Iron Man, Giant Man, The Wasp, and The Hulk, have sized control of the world, capturing and indefinitely detaining all other people with super powers, be them hero or villain.

Of course, these alternate Avengers are being manipulated by Kang the Conquerer but he isn’t mind-controlling them, nor is he blackmailing them, simply giving them a thin pretense of heroics under which they can justify world-rule.   Kang posed as an alien on a mission of peace, and offered to cure all of Earths ills if the Avengers would first imprison all other superhumans. They unanimously accepted his offer without even asking for the slightest evidence to back his claims.

The specifics of how things play out don’t much matter as this is a time travel story that ends with the erasing of all memory of occurrence on the part of all participants.  Nonetheless, it stands as sharp reminder of how little it takes to get Thor to conquer the planet, as he has done or attempted to do at least twice in the past.

 

Days of Thunder – April 1968 The Incredible Hulk #102

“–This World Not His Own!”
Stan Lee Panoramically Presents This Pulse-Pounding Premiere by Gary Friedrich and Marie Severin/ Inked by: George Tuska/ Lettered by: Artie Simek

hulk 102

When last we left the Hulk, back when this magazine had a different name, he was plummeting to death in the form of Bruce Banner down a crevasse.  The title and and creative team of this book has changed, but at the start of this tale, Banner is still falling.

It just so happens that Asgardian exiles The Enchantress and the Executioner are at the bottom of this ravine.   When the Enchantress sees a human falling towards them, she uses her magic to catch him, on the theory that as a human, he may know something about Hercules, for whom she is still smitten.

Banner has no idea who Hercules is, pointing out that there are millions of humans on Earth and he doesn’t know them all. He soon Hulks out again, and starts fighting not only the exiles, but the troll army they have gathered. It is unclear if this army is the tattered remnants of those who fought and lost the Great Troll War, or if this is a different band of trolls.  Either way, they are a formidable-enough force to cause Hulk to run away.

The exiles are not concerned with Hulk at the moment, they are busy preparing to mount a major offensive against Asgard. While the villains prepare for their attack,  Hogun, Fandral, and Volstagg have made their way to Oldar the Oracle, who warns them of the battle to come.  Meanwhile, the Hulk wanders around catacombs snaking beneath Asgard.

The trolls attack and unlike previous troll attacks, the Enchantress uses her magic to tip things her way. At least, that’s the way things are going until the Hulk shows up and helps his Asgardian friends murder a ton of trolls while Enchantress and Executioner retreat, the Executioner being much more ready to retreat than the  the Enchantress. Afterward, Hulk predictably angers Odin and is exiled from Asgard.

First Appearance: Oldar the Oracle

Days of Thunder – March 1968 Tales to Astonish #101: The Incredible Hulk

The Incredible Hulk “Where Walk the Immortals”
Panoramically Produced by Stan Lee & Marie Severin/ Inking: Frank Giacoia/ Lettering Artie Simek

astonish 101

This is the final issue of the comic magazine Tales to Astonish to serve as a double-feature, one story starring Namor, the Sub-Mariner, and the other starring the giant green man-monster known as the Incredible Hulk. It is the Hulk story we turn our attention towards, as he once again becomes a catspaw for scheming Loki.

Loki of course, previously tried to use the Hulk to attack Thor, in what would lead to the formation of the Avengers. This time, his plan is to let the Hulk loose within the halls of  Asgard to distract Odin from the threats Thor is facing on Earth.

Naturally, Hulk first encounters vigilant Heimdall as he crosses the Rainbow Bridge. Heimdall attacks with his sword, the Sabre of Sorcery. The attack slows but does not stop the Hulk, who defeats Heimdall by slamming his fists on the bridge so hard that not only does the noise jar the glittering guardsman, but the bridge itself quakes, sending Heimdall tumbling.

Hulk next encounters the trio of grim Hogun, dashing Fandral, and voluminous Volstagg. He defeats the three of them, in part by tossing around their horses. During the course of the fight, the Asgardians realize that Hulk is not an aggressor but merely displaced.  Soon after, they manage to calm him down.

The three friends take the Hulk to seek the wisdom of Oldar the Oracle. This involves crossing a bottomless chasm. Hulk passes up the opportunity to share a saddle with Fandral insisting he can leap the chasm with nothing but the power of his legs. Midway across the chasm, Loki turns the Hulk into his mortal guise of Doctor Bruce Banner, which apparently stops his forward momentum.  He plummets into the void.

First Appearance: Sabre of Sorcery

Days of Thunder – November 1966: The Amazing Spider-Man King-Size Special! #3

“…To Become an Avenger!”
How’s this for a zingy combo? Scrip Writin’ by Smilin’ Stan Lee/ Layouts by Jazzy Johnny Romita/ Pencilin’ by Dashin’ Donnie Heck/ Inkin’ by Mirthful Mickey Demeo/ Letterin’ by Adorable Artie Simek

Spider Annual 3

It seems that even though he is no longer an active member of the Avengers, Thor still attends important meetings covering Avengers business, and votes on matters such as accepting new members. Since last we saw the Avengers, The Wasp and Giant-Man re-joined the team. Giant Man changed his name to Goliath after being forced to stay permanently 10 foot tall. The Enchantress ditched the Executioner. Rick Jones and his teen brigade seems to have fallen out of touch with the group.

It is the matter of a new member that brings Thor to the Avengers now. The team is considering whether to offer membership to Spider-Man, a young, mysterious superhero with spider-powers. After some debate and checking of references, Thor tracks down Spidey and offers him the opportunity to test for membership.

Spider-Man’s test is to bring the Hulk to the Avengers but ultimately he doesn’t trust the Avengers to treat the monster-man well, and so he tells the Avengers that he couldn’t find the Hulk and passes on the membership.

As was the case with the recent Thor Annual, it is unclear when exactly this story takes place in relation to the stories in Thor’s own magazine.  One presumes it would slot-in during some near-future break in the action of Thor’s main title.  Within the Avengers timeline it takes place during a period when Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch were visiting Europe due to the temporary loss of their powers.

First Appearance: Spider-Man

Days of Thunder – January 1965: Journey Into Mystery with The Mighty Thor #112

The Mighty Thor Battles the Incredible Hulk!

A Stan Lee – Jack Kirby Marvel Masterwork! Inking by Chic Stone * Lettering by S. Rosen

jim 112

Thor happens upon an unruly pack of youngsters arguing amongst themselves over who is stronger: the Mighty Thor or the Incredible Hulk. Thor can deduce that this is the topic of debate because they are snarling at each other as if they are about to come to blows while each side brandishes giant wooden signs shaped like the heads of the respective nominees.  It is an amazing tableau.

112 splash

Thor sits down with the youths and tells them of the time he battled the Hulk, specifically in the pages of The Avengers #3. Not much of interest happened in that issue, but apparently, between panels, there was a thirteen page fight between Thor and Hulk.

The end result of the fight ends up being inconclusive.