I was looking at my graphics over the weekend and in particular the various Marvel events that we’ve seen over the last several years. The quality level of them has been quite variable- some have been great, some have been mediocre and some have been completely dreadful *cough*ageofultron*cough* but none has quite managed to utterly disappoint me to the same extent as World War Hulk.
Now, I’m a big Hulk fan and Planet Hulk is definitely among the best contemporary story writing featuring the big guy that we’ve seen for a long time. It also set up WWH nicely: a ruthless and intelligent Hulk who has never been stronger on a collision course which pretty much every hero on Earth.
Now the event when it started was little more than a series of fight scenes but that didn’t bother me. Hell, I don’t see how it could have gone any other way really.
What upset me was the sidestep at the last second. Earth’s smartest heroes exiled the Hulk on a ship with a drive capable of blowing up a planet and were ultimately responsible for the death of his wife, child (as far as we knew at the time) and almost every living thing on the planet (other than a number of refugees). I thought that was going to be a hugely character defining moment for each of them. They killed millions and destroyed a world as a result of their own hubris. Go and live with that.
Then at the last second… nope, its the giant bug’s fault. What? Pardon me? Did you really wimp out of epic character development at the last second? You did? DAMN IT, MARVEL!
I haven’t read it myself but I’ve heard similar complaints about the conclusion to Jonathon Hickman’s run on the Ultimates.
So what do you think the worst examples of great storytelling dropping the ball at the last moment might be?