Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Sensational She-Hulk 42: Byrne Recycles More Plotlines

This is yet another issue of three and four panel pages with a story recycled from earlier plotlines (She-Hulk fights Spragg, The Living Hill!, but this time in space, and Xemnu, another old foe, pops up again).  My best guess is that creator John Byrne was devoting his main energy to his creator-owned series Next Men and trying to do the bare minimum on She-Hulk (well, maybe not "bare minimum" as he already ran blank pages in a previous issue).  The issue isn't without its charms, but it's work well below what Byrne is capable of.  Here are some random thoughts on this issue:

*She-Hulk's sidekick Weezi goes on strike until Byrne starts drawing her skinnier.  This is an inspired bit, but probably could have been done in a page or two and not the six pages it took up.

*She-Hulk punches more rocks.  At first I thought Byrne just reused panels from last issue, but he actually drew a few more pages of She-Hulk punching rocks.  It would have been funnier if he just reused the same panels, but I guess he didn't want to make it too obvious that he was padding out what was a thin story to begin with.

*Enilwen the giant shows up.  This time he collects rocks.  Since Enilwen is a parody of comics creator Len Wein (you may know his work if you know Wolverine), I would guess this is some strange sort of inside potshot at Wein, but I have no idea what it is.  Last time, Byrne was making fun of Wein's teddy bear collection. Maybe Wein collected rock albums?

*A subscription advertisement shows Marvel publishing 72 titles one could subscribe to.  No wonder this era of Marvel is relatively not well-regarded.  They were likely just publishing too many comics and the talent pool grew thin.  When Morbius, a Spider-Man vampire villain, has his own title, then you know that Marvel isn't being too picky about what it's putting out.

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