Thursday, 5 August 2010

Incredible Hulk #134. Draxon and the Golem

Incredible Hulk #134, Draxon and the Golem(Cover from December 1970.)

"Among Us Walks... The Golem!"

Written by Roy Thomas.
Drawn by Herb Trimpe.
Inked by Sal Buscema.
Lettering by Artie Simek.


Darn those infernal children, with their puppy dog eyes and their bawling. Just as you're having a nice relaxed lumber around a bombed-out city, they come along and beg you to overthrow their dictator for them.

That's right, the Draxon two-parter concludes with the half that makes it a classic as, prompted by the tears of a little girl, our anti-hero steps into the shoes of the Golem to free the people of Morvania from their servitude. It's an inspired idea from Roy Thomas, the legend's historical roots and inevitable World War Two parallels adding an extra layer of resonance to both the tale and the concept of the Hulk.

The Hulk of course, as we all know, can't resist the pleading of a child and so decides to get rid of Draxon which, despite Draxon's new high-tech weapon - whose final part, ironically, arrived in the same crate as the Hulk - he does in short shrift. Given the chance to rule the kingdom, the Hulk rejects the offer, spotting, in a way the locals can't, the sheer stupidity of the customs on which their society's built.

You can hardly blame him. It's a land of fools convinced that whoever wears a medallion has a right to rule the place, no matter how unfit he is to hold that power. With ideas like that, no wonder their country's in a mess.

But it's all great stuff, the little girl tugging at all the right heart strings, and the peasants of Morvania learning a valuable lesson about not placing your trust in inanimate objects and irrelevant traditions. The fact it took a brainless beast to teach them the errors of their ways says it all about the potential folly of adults and the potential wisdom of those infernal children, of whom the Hulk, when you get down to it, is basically one.

2 comments:

Hoosier X said...

This one I remember.

It was a few years old when I saw it. I was in the seventh or eighth grade (1976? 1977?) and one of the kids brought it to school, and it got passed around all day. Boys love the Hulk!

I don't remember it vividly, but I remember thinking it was so cool to compare the Hulk to the golem legend (which I knew from an issue of The Invaders).

We managed to keep the comic book hidden all day, even though bunches of us were reading it throughout the day. In your face, Mrs. McCarthy!

Hey! Teacher! Leave those kids alone!

The Cryptic Critic said...

Teachers have rarely understood that comic books are greater literature than Shakespeare.

And then they call themselves educated...

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