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Herc #4

Posted: Thursday, June 9, 2011
By: Sam Salama Cohén

Greg Pak, Fred Van Lente
Neil Edwards, Scott Hanna (i), Jesus Alberto (c)
Marvel
Once again, the Marvel Universe is in deep turmoil. Even in Brooklyn, chaos ensues, and where there was only one powerless demi-god now stands Hecate -- goddess of witchcraft bent on having her revenge against old affronts -- and Kyknos, the son of Ares who, like his father, should be dead.

The funny thing is they’ve teamed up to put an end to old Herc’s misery.
Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente have reinvigorated Hercules by infusing him with a needed dose of badassery, a sweet and mythically meaningful arsenal and -- more importantly -- a purpose.

I hope that this B-rate demigod going all max on his enemies and on anyone who perpetrates evil on the borough of Brooklyn is just the reemergence of an Avenger I have always loved but that, until recently, had been lost in a endless Limbo of poor characterization and mockery after mockery. In giving Herc all this new/old arsenal, the writers are giving him both inspiration and a link to the heroic roots of the greek demigod. And with each issue of this smart and challenging series, Hercules seems to remind readers of his past and glorious feats.

Honestly, this is how a greek demigod should be portrayed. Pissed off, snarky, badass, merciful but violent… all of them traits that with the menace of Fear Itself looming over the world seem to reach new heights, new levels.

Artistically, I must admit that the first issue surprised me, but Edwards’ style has really grown on me. I somehow believe he manages to translate the snarkiness of Herc and his bold resolve while giving the comic his own touch.

Though a good follow up on the Fear Itself/Ares’ worshippers arc, this issue, however, lacked the perfect mix between humor, action and that constant sense of being haunted by unseen menaces that the previous issue had. Maybe it’s just that the second part of the issue was slower and seemingly a set up for the next issues, where the previous one started firing since the beginning until the last page.

However, I’m left with a great taste, because the Herc that I love is back. In the man’s own words to Kyknos: "Poor Kyknos. As foolish as you were the last time I killed you, eh?"

So, yes. The son of Zeus is back, and he is here to stay.



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