Warning: some SPOILERS for the issue may follow.
Last issue we saw that Bruce Banner suffered seemingly permanent brain damage, making the former genius physicist a mentally challenged man. This is an interesting story decision, but the immediate consequence of it is that the story shifts its focus away from Banner himself, and away from the classic split-personality struggle he goes through. With Banner now basically a toddler-brained man, he becomes almost entirely uninteresting as a character.
This issue features an attempt by SHIELD to contain The Hulk, and thus protect the public. It was hard enough when Banner was cooperating and trying actively to subdue his destructive outbursts, but now that he has the mind of an easily provoked child, it becomes a truly frightening task.
Meanwhile, our trusty mysterious villains have recreated The Abomination, (out of recycled Hulk material?) and sent him on a mission to collect something from Banner. The battle between the two is basically a background fight here, since what they do is cause massive destruction, forcing the non-super-powered characters to run. If only these characters were interesting or compelling enough for us to care about their fates this could be interesting, but unfortunately the characters of Hulk are, so far, just there.
While the premise of the book is interesting, the story itself feel underdeveloped here. The issue basically revolves around keeping Banner calm and the monster contained. One might wonder, “why not try and simply keep him under sedation, deep in an underground bunker”?, and writer Mark Waid may address that in future installments. But for now, The plot is a bit simple and uninteresting, and our main character is mentally neutered.
“Hulk #2” has an interesting idea at its core, but so far the book’s story and characters aren’t developed or compelling enough.
Asaph Bitner is a staff writer for Capeless Crusader. His other activities include studying for a college degree and dreaming of visiting the Song Of Ice And Fire universe as a future-tech wielding jedi secret agent. You can follow him on twitter at @AsaphBitner.