The Incredible Hercules #132
This has been recommended to me by enough people that I decided it was time I checked it out. Our story this issue: Hercules is traveling with a disguised Athena and a magically de-aged and amnesiac Zeus. Athena stays behind to fight off some harpies, and soon, Herc and Zeus come to the aid of Balder the Brave as he’s attacked by a bunch of dark elves and a troll. Balder recruits Herc to battle the queen of the dark elves as she makes plans to conquer the world. But since the elves fear Thor, Hercules must travel to their realm in disguise — hence, the costume change on the cover. But as Hercules and Zeus head out for the battle, is Balder hiding something from the heroes?
Verdict: Thumbs up. Wonderful dialogue, excellent action, and some awesome imagery, too. The best moment has got to be Zeus rediscovering how to throw lightning — it’s not often you’ll see a shirtless eight-year-old in a dress look so thoroughly badass.
The Incredible Hercules #133
In this issue, we follow Herc’s former sidekick, Amadeus Cho, the Seventh Smartest Person on Earth. He’s traveling by bus across the country as he tries to find his missing sister and find out who killed his parents. He makes his stop in the small ghost town of Excello, a former soap-making company town with a few very bizarre quirks. For one thing, the town tends to disappear when you’re not looking at it. People tend to just show up out of nowhere, and they’ve all got a weird fixation on the Master Mind Excello Radio Hour, the quiz show where Amadeus learned he was the Seventh Smartest Person on Earth. Oh, and all the people seem to be nothing but evil flying glowing brains. A federal agent shows up to help him, but do they stand any chance against Pythagoras Dupree, the Sixth Smartest Person in the World?
Verdict: Another thumbs up. Again, very nice dialogue, and the double flashbacks — to Amadeus’ adventures with Hercules and to Amadeus’ own origin — are very well done. We don’t get to see much of the villain, but he certainly sounds interesting enough. And the town of Excello is plenty creepy. I think I’m enjoying this series enough to add it to my regular pull-list…