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  1. #1
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    Default Bruce Jones’ ‘Incredible Hulk’ appreciation

    Much to my surprise, I see that Marvel are reprinting Bruce Jonesí much maligned Incredible Hulk run as a series of hardcovers. This got me thinking back to this run, which I originally purchased in TPB form. It was very much a part of the creative upsurge that was going on at Marvel at the time, which gave us Straczynskiís Amazing Spider-Man, Bendisí Daredevil, Morrisonís New X-Men and, um, Austenís Uncanny X-Men, amongst other editorially independent stories and extended runs. I distinctly remember that towards the beginning of the run, Jonesí Incredible Hulk was receiving much critical and commercial attention, which is why I started buying the trades in the first place. But not long into the run, it became clear that the story was heading nowhere, and the initial thrill of Jonesí radical new direction quickly faded. Then I seem to remember that Bruce Jonesí contract with Marvel came to a sudden end, and so he very sloppily attempted to close the run full circle with an abrupt conclusion that came out of nowhere. This lead me to believe that Jones wasnít actually leading up to anything, and that he would have very happily continued to have Bruce Banner walk around America as a fugitive for as long as he could without ever ending it.

    And, yet, I actually liked the run as a whole. It could have been a classic, but instead itís an interesting, but flawed, take on the character. I remember at the time that I absolutely despised Peter Davidís follow-up story arc, "Tempest Fugit", which retconned Jonesí run. I hated it so much that I gave the trade to a charity shop, something which I now regret doing.

    What are your thoughts on Bruce Jonesí Hulk run? Are there any other appreciators out there, if not outright fans?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bad Wolf's Avatar
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    I really liked it. I came on somewhere in the middle of it, but I've since gone back and read the first hardcover. I never felt like it was "going nowhere"; it's just a long game, and it might well read better in book form than monthlies. It certainly had complete stories within it. I'm glad to hear the rest of the run is coming to hardcover.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Brannon's Avatar
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    This was the run that got me to stop reading modern comics for seven years starting around 2000. Boring and ponderous and an exact antithesis of what I want from a Hulk comic. I'm a big fan of Peter David's run up till Gary Frank leaves, however I never read Tempest Fugit where Jones stuff was retconned. That being said, it was certainly justified.
    "I was handed a chocolate bar and an M-1 rifle and told to go kill Hitler."--Jack "King" Kirby

  4. #4
    Superior Member chicainery's Avatar
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    The early issues had incredible covers by Kaare Andrews:



    I liked the run at first, but grew tired of it after awhile. I was a fan of Tempest Fugit, though.

  5. #5
    Rulk needs his moustache! ResIpsaLoquitur's Avatar
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    To be fair, "Tempest Fugit" didn't exactly retcon out the Jones run. Peter David stated that he left the ending ambiguous; Nightmare even said something to the effect that certain parts of the Hulk's life (specifically referencing the Jone stuff) may or may not have happened. To be fairer, Jones himself was responsible for one big oddity: he portrayed the Absorbing Man as really, really, REALLY evil--more than he'd ever been before--and with the heretofore unseen ability to swap minds with people. (Now, if someone can show me where Creel had done that before Jones' run, I stand corrected).

    At about the same time, Creel had reformed over in Dan Jurgens' Thor. The contradiction was so bad that the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe published around that time had to make some excuse about a time warp explaining how Creel was acting so differently in both stories.

    The thing that REALLY retconned Jones' run, in my mind, was Fall of the Hulks. When they established that Betty was restored by the Leader and turned into Red She-Hulk, that pretty much eliminated any chance that Betty's appearances in the Jones run ever happened.
    Last edited by ResIpsaLoquitur; 12-20-2012 at 12:56 PM. Reason: Grammar
    "Well, last night's episode was a very special episode. They revealed that the Incredible Hulk has an evil twin. And he's not green. He's red."

  6. #6

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    Don't you mean they "were" releasing them in hardcover. Again. And this time they managed to get about 5 issues further along before pulling the plug. Again... I got the two OHCs and then the last PHC. I'm enjoying it. But given marvel once again aborted the release I'm really getting over thinking I'll ever finish it.

    I loved the Kaare Andrews cover. After seeing them I tried digging up more work of his but I couldn't find any actual comics he drew.
    Last edited by Mobe1969; 12-20-2012 at 01:11 PM.

  7. #7
    Rulk needs his moustache! ResIpsaLoquitur's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mobe1969 View Post
    Don't you mean they "were" releasing them in hardcover. Again. And this time they managed to get about 5 issues further along before pulling the plug. Again... I got the two OHCs and then the last PHC. I'm enjoying it. But given marvel once again aborted the release I'm really getting over thinking I'll ever finish it.

    I loved the Kaare Andrews cover. After seeing them I tried digging up more work of his but I couldn't find any actual comics he drew.
    They're pulling the plug? I just checked Amazon and see they have three Bruce Jones volumes listed, covering 5 of his 8 arcs (not including his Hulk/Thing and Hulk/Wolverine series). Volume 3 is listed as having come out in November. Has Marvel affirmatively said that they won't do anymore?

    (I'm wondering if this is a pattern. I'm glad that they published 2 Bill Mantlo/Sal Buscema volumes, but they stopped with Hulk getting exiled to the crossroads. They really need to publish that last 14-issue Hulk arc. Grrr.)
    "Well, last night's episode was a very special episode. They revealed that the Incredible Hulk has an evil twin. And he's not green. He's red."

  8. #8
    Member z1co80's Avatar
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    I haven't read it and i have went back and forth on whether i should bother to given the thoughts on it but i may get round to reading it one day if i see it somewhere cheap enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by ResIpsaLoquitur View Post
    They're pulling the plug? I just checked Amazon and see they have three Bruce Jones volumes listed, covering 5 of his 8 arcs (not including his Hulk/Thing and Hulk/Wolverine series). Volume 3 is listed as having come out in November. Has Marvel affirmatively said that they won't do anymore?

    (I'm wondering if this is a pattern. I'm glad that they published 2 Bill Mantlo/Sal Buscema volumes, but they stopped with Hulk getting exiled to the crossroads. They really need to publish that last 14-issue Hulk arc. Grrr.)
    Agreed

    I loved Pardoned and Regression and would love to see Crossroads brought out

  9. #9
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    The only thing I remember about this run is that I threw the comic across the in utter disgust and then Jones got moved to Nightwing....I really hate his stuff.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member jameszahra's Avatar
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    i didnt mind the run..

  11. #11
    Richards!!! josh straightedge's Avatar
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    Not a fan and was really bummed when they put out the 3 MPC's. We get Hulk: The End, which was great but the entire time you sit there hoping for more PAD stuff and instead get 3 Bruce Jones book. Gah!
    Today, I make no demands... no threats! But, one day, I shall voice demands -- and all shall obey them!

  12. #12
    T.S.O.T.I. Hulk_Is's Avatar
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    I dropped the series only three issues in. Once that guy and the girl kept killing each other, but then kept coming back to life - I knew then that wasn't a series for me. And from what I hear, it only got worse.
    Marvel : Moon Knight, Savage Hulk (6/25), Original Sin (5/7)

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  13. #13

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    I really enjoyed Bruce Jones' Hulk run. Back then I posted under such creative names as BruceJonesFan and The BruceJonesEnthusiast. ;)

    Acknowledging that the run wasn't geared toward longtimers (even though I am one) and has its flaws. What I appreciated about it was its focus on Bruce and setting him in a suspense/mystery driven longform story. That Bruce gained/thought he gained control over Hulk thru yoga & meditation. That Bruce was given the Bixby effect with the ladies was a welcome change.

    I liked The Home Base w/Agent Pratt and The Mouth (who I thought woulda been a good Arnim Zola reveal instead of The Leader). The Abomination arc was intense. Could it been a little less decompressed? Sure.

    And Kaare Andrews is the best, most creative cover artist in Hulk's history. And the Weeks, Immonen & Deodato art was outstanding.

    Hulk was used in a unique way ... sparingly. And if u aren't interested in Bruce then that's gonna be a problem.

    Oh and Samson never lost an eye. Hate that mischaracterization of events (lookin at PAD's Tempest Fugit wording). He wore the eyepatch to block the implanted camera.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by ResIpsaLoquitur View Post
    They're pulling the plug? I just checked Amazon and see they have three Bruce Jones volumes listed, covering 5 of his 8 arcs (not including his Hulk/Thing and Hulk/Wolverine series). Volume 3 is listed as having come out in November. Has Marvel affirmatively said that they won't do anymore?

    (I'm wondering if this is a pattern. I'm glad that they published 2 Bill Mantlo/Sal Buscema volumes, but they stopped with Hulk getting exiled to the crossroads. They really need to publiskh that last 14-issue Hulk arc. Grrr.)
    Yeah GRRR! They cancelled the entire MPC line. I think that third Jones Hulk was the last one ever. My copy turned up this week.

  15. #15
    Veteran Member Hypestyle's Avatar
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    At least all the stories are still considered as canon-- right?

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