> Hulk Masterworks Volume 2

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From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"Rick, did you leave the Avengers and travel all this distance just to tell me that you're beginning to doubt my loyalty, too??

-- Bruce Banner, pg. 6

If you can't guess what's coming next, you're not a Hulk-Lover of the World!!!

(Click panels for larger images.)


The Incredible Hulk
from Tales to Astonish #68

June 1965 10 pages

Script: Stan Lee Letters: Artie Simek
Pencils: Jack Kirby
Inks: Mike Esposito (credited as Mickey Demeo)

Title: "Back From the Dead!"

Villain: The Leader, Humanoids

Guest Appearance: Glen Talbot, General "Thunderbolt" Ross, Betty Ross, Rick Jones, President Johnson

Letters Page: Page One

House Ads: Page One Page Two

Story Synopsis: As Banner and Talbot fall to their doom from a cliff in Mongolia, Banner transforms into the Hulk and saves Talbot's life by catching him before they fall and absorbing the crash to earth. He leaves Talbot behind and follows the feeble command of his mind to leap home.

The Leader constructs the next part of his plan- to send an army of Humanoids to Astra Isle to steal the Absorbatron. He does this by shrinking the Humanoids down to microscopic size, then plans to drop them on the island and transform them to regular size. Meanwhile, the Hulk has made it back to Banner's home at the base. He falls asleep and wakes up as Banner, surrounded by General Ross, Betty and a large assemblage of military police. But at that same moment, Major Talbot is meeting with the President- the only person besides Rick Jones who knows the Hulk's secret- and he tells Talbot that they must release Banner and let him help test the Absorbatron on schedule.

The Leader heads for Astra Isle in his helicopter and drops his Humanoid "seeds" onto the currently deserted island. Concurrently, Rick Jones consults with Bruce Banner in his jail cell, telling him that the world has so many unanswered questions about him. Also, Talbot shows up and rubs it in that Banner left him behind for dead in Tibet, the stress of which causes Banner to feel the Hulk transformation coming along. He gobbles down some tranquilizer pills to stop it, but Talbot springs him from his jail cell nonetheless, in order to take him to the Absorbatron test.

They land on Astra Isle in their helicopter, but Banner senses something strange going on when he sees a pink, powdery substance on the ground. They descend down into the underground control center, while on top, Banner's weird feeling comes to fruition- thousands of Humanoids spring to life from the microscopic powdery substance! They lift the door to the underground facility and drag Talbot out, but the major doesn't go down without a fight. Banner, too, is tackled by dozens of Humanoids, but at the bottom of the pile, his rage grows until the Hulk lets loose a massive punch, knocking the whole pile off of him. But before he can gain an edge in the fight, a couple Humanoids let go of a knockout gas that puts Hulk to sleep. The Leader descends to Astra Isle in his command craft, ready to pick up his prize!

--synopsis and panel images by Gormuu

--letters page and house ads provided by Justin Fairfax

Issues Reprinted
Giant-Man from Tales to Astonish #59
& Incredible Hulk from Tales to Astonish #60-79

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.

TTA #59 TTA #60 TTA #61 TTA #62 TTA #63 TTA #64 TTA #65
TTA #66 TTA #67 TTA #68 TTA #69 TTA #70 TTA #71 TTA #72
TTA #73 TTA #74 TTA #75 TTA #76 TTA #77 TTA #78 TTA #79


All cover images are courtesy of the Silver Age Marvel Comics Cover Gallery.

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