Reviews – Marvel Comics: Red She-Hulk #63

Posted: March 10, 2013 in Reviews - Marvel Comics
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With its focus on two relatively minor, or at the very least, non-mainstream characters, namely the titular Red She-Hulk, better known as Bruce Banner’s ex-wife Betty Ross, and Aaron Stack, aka Machine Man/Android X-51, this title has the potential to be a very interesting way to expand the Marvel universe in genera and the Hulk/gamma-verse in particular. That said, I have to say that for me, issue # 63 didn’t serve any real purpose beyond making me want to read the next issue. Granted, that is a reasonable purpose for a book to have, it just shouldn’t be the only one.

Stepping back a little, let’s look at where we are coming into this issue, hopefully without getting any more spoiler-heavy then a recap page. Basically, the current storyline, starting in issue #58 when the title was rebranded for Marvel NOW! as Red She-Hulk ( it was previously just Hulk), centers on Betty Ross, who has been given a glimpse into the future, or of a possible future, thanks a girl named Eleanor Bennett and a machine known as the terranometer, trying to expose and destroy the US government’s current super soldier program, Echelon, headed by General Fortean. At the very least there is plenty of potential here for misunderstanding and conflict as anyone working for or with the government who hasn’t seen what Betty has is given very little choice but to view her as the villain of the story.

Now, getting back to this issue specifically, I will admit that, for the 6th issue in the current story this actually makes a pretty good jumping on point for anyone who hasn’t been reading it. Unfortunately, for someone like me, who’s been reading since issue #58, or earlier, that’s exactly the problem. Don’t get me wrong, accessibility is great, but as I said earlier, that shouldn’t be they only point of a single issue, which I feel it was here. Simply put, this issue was an in-between, it was filler. The first two and a half pages of the issue, in the form of a round table discussion show being watched by Betty Ross and Aaron Stack, is essentially an extended recap page. The rest of the book shifts for the most part into set-up for the next issue and probably further down the line. The book introduces, or re-introduces as the case may be, three significant characters to the series, none of which I will spoil here, but none of those reveals pay off in this issue. The best I can say I’d that, as is so often the case, the last page character reveal will certainly be a major part of issue #64. The best part of this issue, in my opinion, was the fight that takes up the majority of about eight pages starting about halfway in, and even that was pretty one-sided and underwhelming.

So, bottom line, I’ll give it to you from three perspectives. First, if you’ve been reading this story from the beginning like me, it’s not inherently bad, but you aren’t really missing much if you skip it. Second, if you’re only going to pick up one book this week, you can probably find something better. I won’t recommend anything since this is the only Marvel book I bought this week. And third, if you think you want to get into this series but don’t want to have to backtrack, go for it, I’d wager this month is a better place to start then next month will be.

Michael Bowie

  1. […] #6                                             Red She-Hulk #63 Thunderbolts #7                                             Red She-Hulk #65 […]

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