Planet Hulk #2 Review

Written by: Sam Humphries

Art by: Marc Laming

Published by: Marvel

So far, Secret Wars has been one of my favourite Marvel events in a long time, and even the tie ins have given me a lot to enjoy while remaining fairly separated from the main series. Planet Hulk may be my favourite of the tie-ins I’ve read as it’s mixture of gladiator Steve Rogers, Devil Dinosaur and an entire continent of Hulks is everything I didn’t know I wanted in a Hulk comic. The second issue carries on the excitement from the first fairly well, adding in some new interesting elements.

The biggest development this issue is the inclusion of Doc Green, the current form of Hulk. I have a thing for intelligent Hulks that do things such as recite poetry and act profound, so his inclusion here was a major plus for me. He has some nice interaction with the idealistic Steve Rogers and sheds further light on the realities of life in Battleworld. If there is a problem I had with this, it’d be that Steve’s dialogue feels a little too much like Thor at times, but it’s not too big of an issue. Outside of this, there’s not much overall plot development, but the world building makes up for it. Greenland is a very cool landscape, reminding me of something from a Steven Speilberg movie. There’s a very Jurassic Park feeling to the whole place, and not just because Devil Dinosaur fights Hulk Bulls (though that is a definite highlight). There’s some pretty cool ideas on display here and I’m very much a fan of the idea that it’s not just the people who’s been Hulkified, but the very environment of the landscape. It’s all done very well and I look forward to exploring more of the world in future issues.

Laming does a great job of capturing the scale of his world, his characters look very big, perfect for the types of Hulk he has to draw. Thankfully he also manages to walk the difficult balances between making things look big and nicely hulky without making it seems cringe-worthy or like something from the 90s. The only downside to this is the flashback section of the book, showing Steve and Bucky before the Gamma bomb. While the flashback offers some interesting hints to this Steve’s different origin, the art doesn’t do a great job of depicting him or Bucky. Steve says that they’re supposed to be “beanpoles” but the two look incredibly well in shape with the usual comic square jaws. Again, it’s nothing to sever, just a strange scene that made me double take while reading the comic, the art’s strengths more than outweigh this however.

Overall, Planet Hulk is continuing to be a lot of fun and features lots of the weird continuity blending and team ups that have made secret wars great so far. This is an easy recommendation and one Hulk fans should definitely check out.