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Hugh Likes Comics – Immortal Hulk: Great Power

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Immortal Hulk: Great Power #1
Written by Tom Taylor
Drawn by Jorge Molina
Inked by Adriano Di Benedetto with Roberto Poggi
Colored by David Curiel
Published by Marvel Comics

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The Skinny: This self-contained issue is a modern twist on a fun What If? premise.

Even the most serious concept can be fun sometimes. Superhero comics, as a sub-genre, lend themselves to certain kinds of experiments you rarely see in others. Who would win in a fight? What if this story had ended differently? and of course, What if X character had Y’s Powers?
The premise of Immortal Hulk: Great Power is that Spider-Man has somehow taken the powers of the Hulk from Bruce Banner. But the twist here is that this is the modern, horror-version of the character currently written by Al Ewing.
The result is a book that strays a bit far from the premise of that book, but is a good deal of fun, and serves as an introduction to the characters for readers who don’t know their current deals. It feels like something from the 70’s brushed off and polished to modern style, in the best way possible.
Taylor’s writing is very strong, capturing both the classic essence of these character as well as the modern takes. For instance, Loki has a cameo that feels right in line with his more recent appearances, as do the Fantastic Four.
The art is good, particularly the colors. Molina doesn’t display as much body diversity as one would expect in the characters, though, and in particular his version Bruce Banner is way more ripped than he should be.
This self-contained little story isn’t exactly consequential, but it is a lot of fun and a very enjoyable superhero romp for Marvel fans. You can snag a copy at your local comics shop, or read it digitally through Comixology.

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Hugh Likes Comics: Vote Loki

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Hugh Likes Comics
Vote Loki #1
Written by Christopher Hastings
Drawn by Langdon Foss
Published by Marvel Comics
Voteloki
Over the course of his publication history, the Marvel Comics version of Loki has been a god, a super-villain, a king, and a storyteller.  He’s gained it all, lost it all, died, come back to life, and opted out of the end of the world.  After all that, where do you take the character?  Have him run for president, of course!
Writer Chris Hastings and artist Langdon Foss take over the character following Al Ewing and Lee Garbett’s run of “Loki: Agent of Asgard,” and they are taking a few notes from that version of the God of Mischief.  Issue one is mostly setup, with Loki stopping a terrorist attack and ‘coincidentally’ becoming interested enough in the political process to throw his horned-helmet in the ring.  But with a trickster like Loki, the setup can be just as much fun as the reveal.
Hastings, the writer and artist of the webcomic “Dr. Mcninja,” is a part of a wave of new independent creators at Marvel.  Spearheaded by Ryan North and Erica Henderson’s “Unbeatable Squirrel Girl,” the superhero publisher is banking on a new selection of titles helmed by artists and writers who got their start on the internet instead of the bullpen.
Foss’s art is well suited, and the coloring by Chris Chuckry lends a nice atmosphere to the comic.  The only real flaw here is that the attempts at political commentary come off as broad and toothless.  ‘Politicians sure are liars’ is hardly a new take in 2016, and with a series of stock fictional characters mostly hanging out in the background, “Vote Loki” doesn’t bring anything new or incisive to the table.  But the reason most readers will pick up this comic will be just to watch Loki string along whatever con this turns out to be.
Vote Loki # 1 is available from your local comics shop, or digitally through Comixology.

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Hugh Likes Comics: Loki, Agent of Asgard

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Written by: Al Ewing

Drawn by: Lee Garbett

Published by Marvel Comics

Loki’s had a strange time of it lately in the Marvel Universe. He’s died, come back to life, co-starred in a few hit movies you might have seen, and was even on a team of (Young) Avengers. Now Marvel has given him his own series, and it’s great stuff.

As a God of Lies and Mischief, Loki understands the power of stories better than anybody, and there is a lot of information floating around about Loki’s past. That past could destroy him if he’s not careful, so he’d like to take it back. The only ones powerful enough to expunge his record is the All-Mother, a trio of ruling goddesses. So Loki’s out in the world working for them doing what he does best: making mischief.

This is a very modern take on an old character, and I love it. It’s written with fans of the movies in mind, but it reminds me a lot more of one of my favorite books, American Gods by Neil Gaiman. Forced to interact more closely with the modern world, Ewing’s Loki feels much closer to his mythical roots than Lee and Kirby’s God of Evil.

It helps that Ewing’s take springs right out of Young Avengers Vol. 3, which was my favorite comic of last year. Loki’s smart, clever, and more than a bit mysterious. He’s out robbing casinos, climbing Avengers Tower with his Seven-League Boots, and even going speed dating! My favorite bit is a spot of panels where someone sees Loki in his Asgardian clothes and asks if he came from a Con. He smiles and says “There’s always a con going on somewhere.” This comic is pure fun.

Garbett’s art is great as well, with beautiful colors by Nolan Woodard. Everything looks, well, magical, with clear but stylish layouts and splash pages. There is a bit in the third issue where Loki travels magically, and actually crosses through the gutters. It is a very cool effect.

This is a series full of myths, mystery, cleverness, and a joy. Loki’s got a plan, and it looks like it’s going to bring him into the crosshairs of ancient hero Sigurd. I can’t wait to see what the Trickster’s got up his sleeve.

Loki Agent of Asgard 1-3 is available from Your Local Comics Shop, and digitally from Comixology. And don’t forget, Saturday May 3rd is FREE COMIC BOOK DAY!