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Invincible Iron Man #131: Review

Feb 1980
David Michelinie, Jerry Bingham

Story Name:

Hulk Is Where The Heart Is!

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Invincible Iron Man #131 Review by (April 20, 2015)
Comments: Part one of three parts. Erica Sondheim makes her second appearance in this issue, having been introduced, along with Scott Lang as Ant-Man, in MARVEL PREMIERE #47. Tony Stark knows Hugh Hefner, also referenced in the first movie (though there it was really Stan Lee). There’s also a family, Fred, Ethel, and their son Ricky, sort of an inaccurate reference to I LOVE LUCY. The kid has action figures from MICRONAUTS, a plug for the then-new Marvel series. Twelfth cover to feature only the back of Iron Man’s head; the first eleven came between issues #2 and 41; I don’t know about you but I’ve missed them. The title is a play on the proverb “Home is where the heart is.” One of the letters is from Mary Jo Duffy, who was then a new editor for Marvel.

Review: Enjoyable story begins with an amusing sequence in which Hulk gets all up in everybody’s grill with humorous effect. The story then takes a realistic turn as Tony Stark finally realizes the Hulk is a suffering human being in need of help. A treatment is in sight but at the end things take a strange turn! I realize this review isn’t really reviewing much but I was writing it while one of my son’s friends was in the room playing Kingdom Hearts and now I can’t get the theme from THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS out of my head. I’ll try to make up for it in the next, hopefully less gonzo, review. Trust me, the issue is cool. One strange thing, though: Mrs. Arbogast seems a lot younger and slimmer than usual. No idea why.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Invincible Iron Man #131 Synopsis by T Vernon
Tony Stark has returned from his trip to Hong Kong (last issue) and Bethany Cabe is driving him back to the factory when they run into a massive traffic jam. Seeing people running away from the jam, Tony goes to investigate and discovers that the highway is blocked by the Hulk, who has overturned a fruit truck and is having a snack. Tony sends Beth to look for a phone to call the Avengers so he can suit up as Iron Man in the privacy of a nearby van (labeled “Love Machine”). Meanwhile, the angry truck driver tries to mace the Hulk but gets swatted for his troubles. The police open fire on the Jolly Green Giant but he sends a tremor through the ground knocking the cops off their feet. A National Guard helicopter arrives but Hulk shoots it down with a tanker full of milk. Iron Man arrives and tries to talk to the Hulk but Jade Jaws punches him through a line of cars. Hulk dodges a bazooka blast that wrecks an overpass and a van is ready to topple. Seeing a kid aboard sends Hulk to the rescue; the boy’s sincere gratitude and kindness calms him enough so that Hulk changes back to Bruce Banner. Crying for help, Banner collapses into Iron Man’s arms and Shellhead takes him back to Stark HQ and puts him to bed….
The next morning, Mrs. Arbogast enters to awaken Tony and discovers Bruce Banner. Recognizing him as the Hulk, she panics and flees. Tony calms her down and checks on Banner. Bruce shows him the design for a miniaturized, nuclear-powered pulse regulator that would stabilize his heartbeat when he becomes excited and prevent him from transforming into the Hulk. Tony calls in Scott Lang to help develop the device and famed surgeon Dr Erica Sondheim operates on Bruce to implant the device. When Bruce recovers they put him through a series of tests, confronting him with horrifying images of monsters and disasters and the device keeps him calm throughout. As they leave the medical building, they are met by police with a warrant for Banner’s arrest. Bruce panics and runs but a grenade explosion tosses him through the air. When the smoke clears, there stands an angry Bruce Banner—with the mind of the Hulk….


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> Invincible Iron Man: Book info and issue index

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Jerry Bingham
Bob Layton
Ben Sean
Bob Layton (Cover Penciler)
Bob Layton (Cover Inker)


Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Hulk
Hulk

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)