Friday, June 20, 2008

The Incredible Hercules #118

The Incredible Hercules #118

Dream Time: Sacred Invasion part two

Things are going along nicely for our intrepid band of adventurers until they're forced to deal with Nightmare in order to receive instructions on how to navigate the Dreamtime in order to take on the Skrull Pantheon. Nightmare, being a sonovabitch, naturally takes advantage of the deal to gain more power but is routed when Mikaboshi tricks Nightmare with a shadow copy of himself to to distract him long enough to retrieve the map they need. Successful, our crew heads off into the Dreamtime while a new menace appears to be lurking on board their vessel.

Oh, and Herc gets laid.


Reading it at first, I thought the issue was pretty filler-y. Looking back over it, it's pretty obvious what Pak and Van Lente are trying to do. Every heroic quest always has side quests, right? This is just like that. Lots of references to Jason & The Argonauts to back this up. I suppose one can fault Pak for laying it on thick like that, but I don't think most people would get the point without it. It does give the issue a nice stand-alone feel to it though.

As a Secret Invasion tie-in, I think it's handling the job fairly well. Like I mentioned last week, the tie-ins are probably serving the event better then the main series. It's interesting to see the Skrulls portrayed as spiritual creatures in the beginning. This particular arc is playing with the notion that eliminating an enemy's spiritual cause will cause a collapse of an enemy's overall mission. I really like this idea and is probably one of the most original notions that I've seen in comics in a really long time. The arc might be playing second fiddle to a greater crossover, but I'd bet money someone rips off the notion a few years down the line and wins an Eisner for it, I guarantee.

Pak just keeps having so much fun. The ship they use is powered by Herc's and Ajak's rowing actions. Mikaboshi talks in nothing but haiku. Nightmare's unleashing all manner of nightmares on them including vicious monsters, IRS agents and mother-in-laws. And of course the snappy patter between all the gods. Herc gets to put his hair down, mess around and, uh...mess around.

Sandoval does a good job with the art duties. Has Nightmare always looked liked Dream from Sandman? I can't remember the last time I saw this character.

I really really really want to keep following this story. It's not on my pull list at Gotham, even though it should be. I'm not sure how much longer I'll have my job at this point and if I leave it sooner then expected then I'll be dropping this title too quickly to save money. That fucking sucks. I really want to see how this whole quest ends but I think it's got like two or three more issues before the end.



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