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Incredible Hulk #174: Review

Apr 1974
Gerry Conway, Herb Trimpe

Story Name:

Doomsday... Down Under!

Review & Comments

4 stars


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Incredible Hulk #174 Synopsis by Fredrik Jullum
Bruce Banner is trapped inside a sinking ship after his battle with Cobalt Man. There's no way he can possibly survive now. Wait! Cobalt Man breaks through the wall, grabs Banner, and takes him to the surface telling him that victims of radiation have to stick together...

Ted Roberts (Cobalt Man's brother) believes that his sibling Ralph has changed, and with some luck, the transformation could be reverted, turning him back to normal. Cobalt Man answers that they shouldn't know anything about being normal or intelligent in a world that lives in fear of nuclear war, and that mankind will soon learn a valuable lesson. Uh-oh, that doesn't sound good.

A rescue helicopter arrives, and by some bizarre coincidence, General Thunderbolt Ross, Betty Ross, and Colonel John Armbruster are all aboard it. Betty is shocked over the fact that Bruce is alive, feeling her life has become too complicated lately.

After being picked up, Ted tells Ross about the Cobalt Man, but Armbruster considers that the Australians should handle the problem.

Now, time for some backstory on Cobalt Man! Ralph Roberts was messing around with his armor in his lab six months ago when an explosion gave him an almost deadly dose of radiation. Doctors told him that he only had some months left to live before the radiation killed him. Ralph thought about nuclear war, and how he could protect the world against a fate like the one he now had. And his way of doing it? Destroying an entire city an a nuclear explosion as Cobalt Man. And what city? Sydney. The one where most of the cast happens to be at the moment!

So Cobalt Man starts running around the town, blasting, throwing, and knocking down stuff. Meanwhile, Ted tells Betty that the Hulk may be the only one able to stop his villainous brother. Betty wonders how they can turn Bruce into Hulk, and Ted has a plan. While Ted distracts a guard, Betty sneaks into Bruce's room and gives him some capsules that should work against the drugs they gave him to prevent him from turning into Hulk at the hospital. It doesn't work too well though, so Betty takes Bruce to the roof, and in a last desperate action, she pushes him off the edge. Bruce turns into the Hulk on the way down, and sets off to destroy the Cobalt Man!

It turns out that Cobalt Man is causing all this destruction to build up energy, so he'll eventually overload, and explode, taking out Sydney! The two powerhouses battle. Cobalt Man tries killing the Hulk by flying out of the atmosphere, causing Hulk to suffocate. But Hulk breaks free far above the Earth as the two continue battling.

Cobalt Man is being held by Hulk, who eventually lets him free. Cobalt Man overloads and explodes high above, Sydney is saved.

But what about the Hulk? He is sent flying. No one knows where to but pretty much everybody believes he's dead.

But is he really? And if he's alive, what new adventures await the green giant wherever he lands? To be continued!

Also in this story: President Nixon.

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Herb Trimpe
Jack Abel
George Roussos
Herb Trimpe (Cover Penciler)
Herb Trimpe (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Dave Hunt.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Betty Ross
Betty Ross

(Elizabeth Ross)
Bruce Banner
Bruce Banner

(Robert Bruce Banner)
Cobalt Man
Cobalt Man

(Ralph Roberts)
Colonel Armbruster
Colonel Armbruster

(John D. Armbruster)

(Bruce Banner)
Thunderbolt Ross
Thunderbolt Ross

(Thaddeus Ross)

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