Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1: Review

Jun 2019
Peter David, Dale Keown

Story Name:

Last Call

Review & Comments

Rating:
4.5 stars

Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1 Review by (June 5, 2019)

Review: Bruce Banner wants to give it all up but a suicide counselor convinces him that Hulk is a good guy who helps people (and she proves it by needing her life saved at that exact moment). Very entertaining throwback to a classic moment in Hulk's career as Bruce reviews his life with Betty, including a detailed account of their first meeting. And it's always nice to see Mister Hyde beaten to a pulp but when did he get to be a match for the Hulk?

Comments: One of a series of new stories reuniting favorite creative teams to celebrate Marvel's 80th anniversary. Peter David and Dale Keown collaborated on the Hulk's book from 1990-1992 in THE INCREDIBLE HULK #369-398. Mark Farmer, Marc Deering, Walden Wong, and Scott Hanna are credited as inkers, and Peter Steigerwald with John Wald as colorists. Story takes place after Betty's death in INCREDIBLE HULK #466. Issue includes an ad for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.





 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

On Christmas Eve, Bruce Banner calls the suicide prevention hotline in Reno Nevada where his wife Betty once worked. He speaks to her friend Veronica and informs her that Betty is dead and he is responsible for that death. He tells her of his many failed attempts to kill himself but the Hulk always prevented it, as though he were the personification, not of his anger, but of his will to live. He explains he has now hired a hit man who will shoot him down if he gives a certain signal but another one will cancel the contract. Bruce tells of how they met, when he went over to General Ross' house before the Gamma bomb test and he attracted her attention by helping her with a difficult equation. Eventually they married and she was able to convince him that he shouldn't blame himself for the Hulk. He ponders how others' lives would have changed if he had not survived the bomb blast and likely for the better: Betty, Glen Talbot, Rick Jones, General Ross.... He recalls how Hulk had to fight her as the Harpy when she tried to convince him that Betty never loved him....

Veronica reminds him of all the people the Hulk has saved when she is interrupted. Cal, a stalker, has shown up at her office, revealing himself as Calvin Zabo, Mister Hyde. Bruce, who recognized Cal's voice, swiftly arrives as the Hulk and fights Hyde, who seems to be a match for him...until Hyde mocks Betty's death. Hulk beats him into the ground and the baddie says, “Sorry for your loss” before passing out....

Veronica supplies Bruce with some clothing and thanks him for saving her with a reminder of how Hulk saves lives. As Bruce walks away, he gives the signal to the hitman—Deadpool—to cancel the contract....


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> Incredible Hulk: Last Call: Book info and issue index

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Dale Keown
Dale Keown (Cover Penciler)
Dale Keown (Cover Inker)
Peter Steigerwald (Cover Colorist)


Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Bruce Banner
Bruce Banner

(Robert Bruce Banner)
Hulk
Hulk

(Bruce Banner)

Plus: Mister Hyde (Calvin Zabo).