Today's topic is: Red She-Hulk!
Ahh, Red She-Hulk, because one different colored version of an established character was not enough. Many face-palms were heard around the world when this was announced, and to this day I am cringing on what this character is going to bring to the Marvel Universe at large. To say this character looks and feels stupid is an understatement. Hit the jump as I take a closer look at the new gamma-powered lady.
Meet She-Hulk, The Third
Let's start with the obvious: do we really need a new She-Hulk? There's already the original flavor, Jennifer Walters, which is a pretty interesting character if of itself and had her own ongoing series that was canceled last year. Another She-Hulk (the All-New All-Savage kind) called Lyra, introduced not very long ago, a character from the future that decided to stay in the present that had her own mini series and will now be appearing as back-ups in the pages of Incredible Hulk.
I guess if we follow logic, since the Red Hulk is villain, so is going to be the new Red She-Hulk, at least to give readers something different. Look, I'm all for creating new and original characters, but creating evil versions of established characters by just giving them a color-swap and (in this case) a change of clothes is far from original. It's sad when I have to be specifying what color-version of a character I'm talking about.
It's Raining Hulks
Not to mention the fact that there's already a bunch of gamma-powered beings running around the Marvel Universe. If we are to believe upcoming images, there's at least seven variations of the Hulk. Seriously, here is the whole list of Hulk-type characters:
Hulk (Bruce Banner, although from what I hear he was unpowered recently. Let's see how long that lasts. )
Red Hulk (Unknown)
A-Bomb (Rick Jones. Yes, that Rick Jones)
She-Hulk (Jessica Walters)
Savage She-Hulk (Lyra)
Red She-Hulk (Unknown)
Savage Hulk (Skaar, the son of Hulk)
And that's without counting either Doc Samson or the OTHER son that Hulk has (currently appearing in the pages of Son of Hulk), or older villains like The Leader and Abomination. If this trends continue, Marvel will need to have a "House of Hulk" event where the Scarlet Witch says "No more Hulks" just to downsize the amount of Hulks running around. Although the upcoming World War Hulks (yes, plural) may possibly take care of that.
Personally, I think it also robs the uniqueness of the character to have so many other characters that have the exact same power-set. Imagine if there were a bunch of Spider-Men running around New York City, only with slightly different costumes and personalities fighting against each other. If that sounds familiar to you, it's because you read The Clone Saga.
Anyway, Red She-Hulk just happens to be the latest one in that line, but she also has something else working against her...
The Bad Girl Look
Seriously. Look at that thing. It covers only slightly more than what Witchblade wears, except that it is somehow made of magic fabric that tears only in the non-questionable areas (must be the same material as Hulk's purple pants). I know what you are thinking, this could be just a promotional image, showing when she transforms and breaks her clothing. While I agree that COULD be, the other artwork that we have of her has her wearing the same outfit. Look...
I don't want to sound like a total nerd when I say this, but if that is indeed her final costume, it just looks completely not functional. This is not a "Batman couldn't carry all that in his belt!" complain, but rather a "how is that thing not going to fall apart in the middle of the inevitable fight she is going to get in" one. I have a feeling this will end up being like Supergirl's outfit, where artists will have to dance around the fact that Red She-Hulk's clothes are constantly falling off her body.
On the other hand, I'm sure teenage boys around will want to buy this book. And that's always a good thing, right?
The color of the character is equivalent to a venomous frog's skin pigmentation, telling me to stay away as far as I can. And I plan to do just that, but it still annoys me to see a character that could have easily been conceived in the heyday of the excesses of the early 90' be created almost 15 years later. For all I know, I could be very wrong, and Red She-Hulk is going to be an extremely compelling character with her own unique characteristics that sets her apart from all the other Hulk-related characters, but that sounds very unlikely.
And you are probably thinking "But Matt, you don't read the RULK title anyway!", and you would be right. If the character stayed in the Hulk title, then this wouldn't be that big of a deal but I also have a feeling that won't happen. Red Hulk has started to slowly bleed into other titles, and even appeared as part of the Marvel 75th Anniversary variant covers. Not just on the variant cover, but on the outline around it...
Grilled Cheese Count
3 Grilled Cheeses to quieten my mild rage. A lot of the rage stems from frustration that such a seemingly ill-conceived character, with a lot of the worst qualities that plagued the previous two decades of comics, is getting such a big promotional push from Marvel.