Thursday, September 10, 2009
Written by Greg Pak & Fred Van Lente
Art by Reilly Brown
Best issue of Hercules or best issue of Hercules ever? I'm not sure, but it's definitely a close one. For those out of the loop, Hercules has been tricked into stopping the 'evil' Dark Elf queen by Malekith the Accursed, who posed as Baldur the Brave telling Herc that Thor was banished and, as the Dark Elves have had interactions with Thor before, Malekith convinced Hercules to imitate Thor so that his trip would go smoother. Hilarity ensued.
This issue picks up shortly after arriving in the Dark Elf kingdom and damn near every page was probably a moment of the week for me as Hercules meets the beautiful Dark Elf queen, Alflyse, and proceeds to have reactions similar to the cover to the left here. She's beautiful and not as evil as Hercules was led to believe. Hercules completes some trials to prove his worth (and how awesome Herc really is, especially in the intelligence department!), ends up sleeping with and possibly marrying the queen, who then uses his identity as Thor and the knowledge he was banned from Asgard as a reason to invade and restore his honour.
However, that brief description leaves out a lot of what really makes this issue as good as it was, such as how Thor shows up at the end dressed in Hercules's clothes complaining of a draft from the skirt, the picture perfect expressions from Reilly Brown (so glad they finally got a stable artist to stay on for more than an arc at a time) and seemingly running joke of great sound effects like Clubbawak for a club wacking something. Hell, even the recap page at the start, something I almost always ignore, was hilarious as Hercules sums up what's going on by ridiculing Thor's costume.
Verdict - Must Read. Arguably the best book Marvel is publishing right now and this was easily one of the best issues in the series and a constant reminder why I love this book.