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Incredible Hulks: Enigma Force #1

Posted: Friday, September 17, 2010
By: Ray Tate

Scott Reed
Miguel Munera(p), Greg Adams(i), Jorge Maese(c)
Marvel Comics
Three former Micronauts team up with Jarella's niece and Death's Head to hunt down the Hulk's son, who has apparently abducted the planet K'ai.

This was more or less an impulse buy. I used to love the Micronauts--the awesome toys and the awesome comic book. Sadly, Enigma Force is a Hulk book, and I don't give a damn about Hulk continuity. However, I'm not all that keen on how Scott Reed portrays the Micronauts either. So that's why I gave the book only 2 bullets.

Arcturus Rann is more of a sphincter than a leader. He harbors a "deep, dark secret"; something that was never broached in The Micronauts. So, either Rann suffered from memory loss, or this "deep, dark secret" just suddenly developed as a plot convenience.

Rann and Marionette have divorced. Can't one Marvel marriage last? Damn you, Mephisto! Mari wields a sword for some reason. She even states that "I'm just a hired sword." That irritates me. Rann packs heat. Marionette flashes a sword. In The Micronauts, Marionette was a crack-shot with a laser-pistol. Why switch now especially in a sci-fi setting?

I will give Reed this much. His characterization of Bug is perfect. Best character in the book. I'm puzzled as to how and why Death's Head became involved in the Microverse. As an Acroyear substitute, he lacks appeal. He seems to be a kinder, stupider version of the bounty hunter that harried the Doctor. Death's Head debuted in Doctor Who Magazine, then published by Marvel Comics Limited. Jarella's niece leaves much to be desired for. She has eyes and breasts for Rann. She just strikes me as a plot device introduced to generate tension between Rann and Marionette. Think of her as a dense Orion Slave Girl.

Although I take issue with the way Reed treats the characters, some of the dodgy dialogue--"My past is calling. Out there, Fate is bringing me once more to the planet K'ai."--and the plot, Miguel Munera is a real find. Enhanced by Adams' inks and Maese's colors, Munera's art convinced me to take a chance on Enigma Force.

Munera has a terrific handle on the action scenes. While Rann with a beard and mustache is a silly picture, the expressions and movements of the character reflect the original. Likewise with Marionette, even if she carries a sword. Munera and Adams nail the happy-go-lucky Bug, and Maese's color co-ordination for Bug's new uniform is very attractive. The artists also come together to make Jarella's niece a complete sexpot, her function in the book.

The art is beautiful and fitting for the action and characters. The Micronauts' reunion however leaves a sour taste in the mouth, but Hulk fans might appreciate Enigma Force more.



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