Uncanny X-Men Issue #66 (March 10, 1970)
Story By: Roy Thomas
Art By: Sal Buscema and Marie Severin
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Brief Description: Hulk is on the rampage, but he is the only one who knows how to save Professor X! Can the X-Men stop Hulk in time to save their mentor’s life?
Characters Introduced in This Issue:
*The Hulk (Bruce Banner): The Hulk is a physicist named Bruce Banner who turns into the giant green monster called the Hulk for the first time when he is accidentally caught in a blast from a gamma bomb that he invented. The inspiration for Hulk came from Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Bruce has many parallels to this classic character. Bruce Banner turns into Hulk when he gets angry and he is not always able to control the green monster.
-Powers: Hulk has the potential for limitless physical strength and durability.
Recurring Characters in This Issue: Polaris, Havok,Professor X, Angel, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Iceman, Beast
This issue begins with the X-Men surrounding Professor X’s bedside, mourning the fact that he is in a coma.
Trying to figure out how to save the Professor, Jean probes Xavier’s mind and discovers that Bruce Banner is the key to saving Xavier.
The X-Men (minus Polaris, Havok, and Iceman) then seek out Hulk and battle him in the streets.
They do not fare well in the fight until Jean is able to revert him back to Bruce Banner with her mental powers.
Bruce then reveals that there is a device that he and Xavier invented that can save Professor X, but before he can take them to his lab, the military shoots Bruce and turns him into the Hulk.
Hulk then runs to the desert with the X-Men in pursuit. The X-Men battle him in the desert until they are able to crush him under a pile of rubble from a nearby cliff. Inside the cliff they find Banner’s lab and realize that even though Bruce was in Hulk form, he still subconsciously led them to the device to save Professor X’s life.
They bring the device back to the mansion and Professor X awakes from his coma!
This issue was a nice conclusion to the Silver Age of Uncanny X-Men. It was fun to see the X-Men face off against the Hulk and save Professor X’s life. The Professor is always saving them so it was great to see the tables turned.
My favorite part of this issue were the fight scenes between Hulk and the X-Men. Hulk is one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel Universe and it was great to see the X-Men kick his butt.
My other favorite part of this issue was the love triangle panels between Iceman, Havok, and Polaris. The tension finally comes to a head in this issue and it is great. Poor Bobby is going to lose this fight with Alex and it is actually pretty clear why Lorna prefers Alex. Bobby is very possessive and hot headed when it comes to Lorna. Alex on the other hand gives Lorna her space and seems to respect her more.
My only major problem with this issue is that Polaris and Havok once again do not go on the mission with the rest of the X-Men. Their excuse this time is that they need to protect Professor X from his enemies, but any of the X-Men could have done that. Havok and Polaris are never used well in the Silver Age. They are more like scenery than actual characters.
Other than that though, this is a solid issue. It didn’t blow me away, but it was a satisfying end to the original run of the X-Men. Now it’s time for the Golden Age of Uncanny X-Men!