Issue(s): Hulk #126
Some cultists that serve the Undying Ones find Bruce Banner (who has been sleeping in the grass since his battle with the Absorbing Man) and bring him to their mansion.
They send him into a dark dimension to fight a creature called the Night Crawler (his name will later be changed to Dark Crawler to avoid confusion with the fuzzy elf from the X-Men).
When one of the cultists, Barbara Denton, has second thoughts, she is sent to the dark dimension too. As part of a very confusing origin, Barbara will eventually become the Valkyrie.
This is especially creepy because it turns out that the head cultist is her husband. Bruce turns into the Hulk and fights the Crawler. If he wins, it means that the undying ones will be able to cross into the Earth's dimension. When the Hulk destroys the Night Crawler's floating rock, the Crawler teleports them all to the Undying One's dimension, where Dr. Strange is held prisoner.
Since the Nameless One and his Undying Ones are now busy fighting the Night Crawler, that threat is ended. In order to redeem herself for her part in the cult ritual, Barbara trades places with Dr. Strange, who has been a prisoner of the Nameless One.
Strange teleports back to Earth with Banner, and the two of them head to Strange's house for a change of clothes. For once, Banner winds up with different color pants (although green isn't exactly a normal color for pants either).
As Mark notes in the comment, Dr. Strange also decides to hang up his cape this issue, on the grounds that the threat of the Undying Ones has ended. Considering all the other threats Strange has faced, it's not exactly a logical conclusion. I don't know why they had to have Strange retire just because his series was canceled.
The Night Crawler is a cool design even if he looks a little sketchy. There's also a couple of pages where the Crawler emits magical darkness and there's a nice effect with the coloring.
Otherwise the art is typical Trimpe, which means it's scratchy and not very pleasant.
Meanwhile General Ross and Major Talbot give Betty Ross a confusing list of things that happened recently to Bruce, the point of which is either to convince her that Bruce is or isn't dead. I can't tell.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: Takes place directly after the Hulk's battle with the Absorbing Man in Hulk #125, but there is no telling how long he slept before the cultists arrived.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Day of the Defenders
Inbound References (14): show
Roy Thomas actually "retired" Dr. Strange in this issue, probably under the belief that since he couldn't sustain a solo series, the character was better off eliminated.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | August 12, 2011 9:48 PM
As Jack Norriss makes a boatload of appearances in Defenders through the years (and even saves the world a time or two in the Gerber era), he should probably be listed under "Characters appearing" and get a "Historical Significance" note, too. The whole Headman/Nebulon craziness would be far less fun without Jack doing a slow burn through it all.
And do my eyes deceive me, or is that a Colan/Palmer Dr. Strange floating in the Undying Ones' dimension in that panel? Perhaps a scan lifted from DS 183?
Posted by: Dan Spector | August 1, 2014 3:11 AM
Thanks, Dan. When i first reviewed this issue i didn't know Jack.
Posted by: fnord12 | August 1, 2014 9:57 AM
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