[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]
Jackie McGee reflects on her first meeting with the Hulk all those years ago. She looks at what she’s doing now, and it shakes her to her core. The Hulk, Absorbing Man, Titania, Puck, and Doc Samson take on General Fortean, now wearing the Abomination Shell, and his soldiers. The battle begins and immediately turns brutal, and Jackie, Betty Ross-Banner, and Rick Jones depart for another target. They’re looking for Dr. McGowan, the woman who enabled everything Fortean has done with Shadow Base.
Immortal Hulk #23 brings us the epic battle between the Hulk and General Fortean we’ve been waiting for. Hulk and Fortean slug it out with the help of their respective allies while Jackie McGee wonders what kind of horror the Hulk is going to bring to Fortean and Shadow Base.
McGee narrates much of the comic, and we’re reminded that she lost a lot to the Hulk–both her home and her father. She’s allied herself with the monster, but she’s seen what he’s capable of now.
We’re also left to wonder what Rick Jones has become and what he is capable of doing now. He’s not the happy-go-lucky adventurous teen we once new; he’s something very different now. We don’t know what that is yet.
Once again, the grim and existential questions raised by the comic are accompanied by macabre artwork from Joe Bennett. The big battle results in a lot of body morphing and general David Cronenberg-esque horror. It looks fantastic and, frankly, I’m here for it. Ruy José supports the visuals with expert inkwork, and Paul Mounts brings it home with a vibrant color palette.
Immortal Hulk #23 is another shocking and completely enthralling issue of the Al Ewing and Joe Bennett powerhouse series. This continues to be one of the most compelling superhero comics I’ve read in years, and the fact that it’s been this good for more than 20 issues is really a feat unto itself. This issue and series receives another strong recommendation. Give it a read.
Immortal Hulk #23 comes to us from writer Al Ewing, artist Joe Bennett, inker Ruy José, color artist Paul Mounts, letterer VC’s Cory Petit, cover artist Alex Ross, and variant cover artist Dale Keown with Jason Keith.
Final Score: 9/10