Issue(s): Hulk #212, Hulk #213
But Jim is friends with the Hulk.
And really, just because you've got little coils that shoot out of your arms, that doesn't put you in the Hulk's league.
You have to love the Hulk's negotiating techniques as well...
The Constrictor will much later be fully developed into an interesting character. Right now he's kind of a generic assassin.
Also this issue, Betty has moved off the army base and she gets herself a new look, presumably with a more independent attitude. The attitude seems primarily based on making herself look more beautiful, but i guess when you've been living as a stuffy army brat all your life, expressing your femininity is a sign of independence.
The letter page for issue #218 has a reader complaining that too many people have adamantium, and that if the Constrictor were to get his hands on adamantium, why wouldn't he make something more useful than a pair of stupid coils. In the same column, Kurt Busiek writes in to say the Constrictor has potential, but he's way out of the Hulk's league. He says a consistent problem for Len, who writes Hulk, Thor, and the Fantastic Four, is that he creates villains that would do better against Spider-Man, Daredevil, and Nova. It's a similar argument to the one made by another writer in Marvel Two-In-One #32, which said that characters are not written at consistent power levels.
Not satisfied with the Constrictor, Len Wein goes totally over the top and introduces the Quintronic Man!
The 5 in 1 threat!
Can you imagine the training required to drive that thing? If the guys in charge of the legs aren't completely coordinated, they're going to wind up with both legs in the air at the same time, and the Man on his ass.
You also have to deal with the fact that the guy in the head portion has really let it go to his.
This thing was built by Stark Industries for use in "interstellar exploration" (i swear, between this, the Jupiter rover and the Venus suit, it's like Stark was gearing up for some interplanetary conquest).
Anyway, this thing is sent in after the Hulk. It's powerful enough to melt the street around the Hulk, but not enough to hurt him directly.
It does manage to beat the Hulk with sleeping gas, but Jim Wilson helps Hulk escape and Hulk doesn't let himself get tricked the same way twice.
Meanwhile, the Jack of Hearts is hunting down some criminals, and hears about the Hulk's rampage and decides to go after him.
He arrives too late but vows to hunt the Hulk down.
Hey, when they had special news announcements in the 70s, did they just cut over the audio of whatever program was on? Or does this guy just think he's getting a newsflash from Big Bird?
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: The Hulk is in the street with Jim Wilson at the end of #212, and #213 shows him getting shot at the police, with Jim behind him, so not much time takes place in between. Issue #214 takes place soon after the end of this issue.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (4): showApril Sommers, Betty Ross, Clay Quartermain, Constrictor, Doc Samson, Gaffer (SHIELD Scientist), General 'Thunderbolt' Ross, Glenn Talbot, Hulk, Jack of Hearts, Jim Wilson, Kroptokin the Great, Leader, Nick Fury
The audio would be cut out usually for weather alerts that were potentially problematic but not hurricane-level(in that case, they'd interrupt the video too).
Posted by: Mark Drummond | June 7, 2013 4:32 PM
Is this the Jack of Hearts first appearance in a color comic? (I've been going through this site in order, and this is the first in that I've seen)
Posted by: Erik Robbins | August 27, 2013 12:09 PM
NM, just read that in the next entry.
Posted by: Erik Robbins | August 27, 2013 12:11 PM
You're right though. I called the follow-up arc his first color appearance but he does appear here first as a teaser.
Posted by: fnord12 | August 27, 2013 12:38 PM
You know how PBS gets during pledge drive time. Having Big Bird deliver the news would get those funds easily.
Posted by: Ataru320 | August 27, 2013 3:36 PM
The Quintronic Man seems like a failed attempt at doing Voltron, but 1977 was several years before even the Japanese did their show much less the American version.
It's very interesting how the same kind of concept can be a success with a different implementation/talent behind it.
Posted by: Chris | December 6, 2014 6:29 PM
Personally, I never understood why people made fun of Supernatural's racist truck but defended the Shining as scary. It's not like there are sentient racist hotels in real life but not sentient racist trucks. I guess what they were really saying is that the writing was much better in the Shining than in the Supernatural episode. And that pretty much sums up the difference between Voltron and the Quintronic Man.
Posted by: Michael | December 6, 2014 6:43 PM
There had been three-piece mecha in anime at least; I know Sentai didn't even go five until '87 with Maskman. Then again Marvel and Toei did create Leopardon for their version of "Spider-Man" in 1978; they brought it to Sentai with BFJ in '79; then Marvel left and mechs kept getting bigger; but as a final wrap around: Susumu Takaku, main writer of Spider-Man and Battle Fever, was also GoLion's (Voltron's original anime) main writer.
Posted by: Ataru320 | December 7, 2014 7:41 AM
The five-part mech thing immediately reminded me of Combatra from Shogun Warriors (although in the comics, Combatra only had a single pilot).
The SW comic didn't appear until late '78 (first issue cover-dated Feb '79) but of course the licensing and production of the comic would have started several months before that.
No idea when the toy first appeared in America, but we might be getting into the right timeframe.
And at least in Japan, Combatra existed as "Combattler V" in April of 1976 as a TV show. Maybe cels or screenshots appeared in Starlog or some other U.S. mag?
Posted by: Dan H. | December 8, 2014 1:40 AM
Ken Ishikawa's Getter Robo creation with three different pilots came out in 1974, and I think the cartoon version, part of a package called Force Five in America, Starvengers, didn't arrive until 1980. I don't know how in tune Len was with Japanese pop culture, but Quin here was at least something you hadn't seen before, even if it's totally unclear how it works! I've never sat through the Japanese Spider-Man, but it's interesting that the show shares a main writer with Voltron (Go Lion).
Posted by: Cecil | October 23, 2015 12:00 AM
As a relatively new enthusiast of Japanese comics history, let me share :22 of Ken's work. You may enjoy some of the other folk on the slides, too.
Posted by: Cecil | October 25, 2015 10:17 PM
Seriously with the Big Hero 6 series coming, I'd love to see an updated modern version of the Quintonic Man mech. (or a mecha like just called "Quintonic") Doesn't matter if it's an ally or enemy, having that with all the other obscurities the movie mined (Orca, Black Talon) would definitely fit that series.
Posted by: Ataru320 | August 18, 2016 11:53 AM
He got an upgrade in INDESTRUCTIBLE HULK #3, and I just read he returned in CIVIL WAR II: SPIDER-MAN #2 last month. I'll have to check that out.
Posted by: Andrew Burke | August 18, 2016 12:36 PM
Sal Buscema is a god for being able to take something that's so ridiculous like Quintronic Man and make it look awesome and badass.
Posted by: Bonez | March 11, 2018 11:11 AM
"McCord, you're acting without authorisation." A Watergate reference?
Posted by: The Small Lebowski | March 11, 2018 1:23 PM
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