Monday, January 27, 2014

The Indexible Hulk #56

Tales to Astonish 099Issue: Tales to Astonish #99
Title: When the Monster Wakes!

Credits: Written by Stan Lee, penciled by Marie Severin, inked by John Tartaglione, lettered by Sam Rosen.

Supporting Cast: Betty Ross, General Ross, Major Talbot.

Villain: Lord of the Living Lightning

Guest-Stars: None.

Plot: The Legions of the Living Lightning have taken over the missile base, thanks to the help of the misguided Hulk! The soldiers managed to gas the Hulk before, but now Betty is in the cell with the Hulk! The Hulk awakens, wondering why Betty is in there with him, but Betty isn't scared, certain the Hulk would never hurt her. Outside the cell, The Lord of the Living Lightning demands Ross obey him, but then it's noticed the Hulk is awake!

The LLL enters the cell, and tells the Hulk Betty is his enemy, but Betty denies it! The Hulk decides to believe Betty, and throws the LLL aside. The Lord of the Living Lightning orders his men to attack the Hulk, and their blasts had an effect... Changing the Hulk back to Bruce Banner! 

Outside the cell, Talbot takes advantage of the distraction to tackle the guard, and heads to the radio to contact the Pentagon. Then he disguises itself as one of the Living Lightning and looks to save Betty. Meanwhile, The Lord of the Living Lightning tells his men to shoot Bruce, but before they do, word arrives of Talbot's escape! With Ross and Betty as their hostages, they aren't worried yet.

But they should be, as Talbot arrives with one of the lightning blisters, and shoots the guards. Outside, reinforcements have arrived, and the remaining Living Lightning troops and the LLL retreat to their jet. Talbot blames Bruce for all this, but Bruce recalls that the LL had missiles ready for launching. Talbot suggests Bruce designed those missiles. Bruce says the Hulk could wipe out the Legions of the Living Lightning, and Ross agrees they have no choice but to trust him.

Ross takes Bruce to where Bruce's old gamma ray device has been rebuilt and Bruce uses it to change into the Hulk (wait, Bruce couldn't get angry enough to change?). The Hulk is still mad about being lied to by The Lord of the Living Lightning, and starts leaping towards their base.

At the LL base, the LLL orders the base abandoned, but first plans to launch their missiles at Ross' base. The Hulk arrives, smashing through their doors. The portable lightning guns are useless against him.  Before the missiles can be launched, the Hulk throws a large crane into the atomic pile, causing the destruction of the base... But what of the Hulk?

Invention Exchange: The rebuilt gamma ray device, which of course looks different than the last one.

Reprinted In: Marvel Super-Heroes #53, Essential Hulk #2, Incredible Hulk (Pocket Books)

Notes: I wonder if when the story was plotted that it was intended that Bruce couldn't change because of being weakened by the device, but by the time Stan saw Marie's pencils he'd forgotten about it?

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