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It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Month, Part 2 – Mad #204 (The Incredible Hulk)

September 8, 2011

I’m going to skip the Jaws II material in this, though someday I’ll have to take a closer look at the Marvel Super Special adaptation (featuring some uninspired art from the usually sublime Gene Colan) of that needless sequel. Captain Neuman in the mouth of a great white shark kind of rules, though.

Since the first part of this month-long retrospective looked chiefly at a Mad spoof of one of the great films of my youth, it seems natural to slide over to a cherished small-screen gem of yore getting similar treatment. Enter “The Incredible Bulk.”

This one (Artist: Angelo Torres, Writer: Lou Silverstone) hits all the expected beats in tackling that fondly-remembered Bill Bixby/Lou Ferrigno series, but the best part of it by far is the series of cameos by comic book/strip characters, some of which are utterly out of left field. Take this title page scene, as the “Bulk” rampages down a city street:

Batman and Robin, Andy Capp, Doonesbury characters and Snoopy, all sharing a stage. Only in Mad.

It goes on, as this sequence will attest (with a Sergio Aragones margin sketch thrown in for good measure):

And there’s more. This wall-crawler sighting would have had the five-year old me tittering:

Maybe not so much the Man of Steel having his changing room destroyed:

Hagar the Horrible and long-suffering pal Lucky Eddie are obvious in this panel, but Blackhawk and his squadron, with their distinctive HAWKAAAA battle cry, almost (literally?) flew right over my head:

Let’s be honest, one Snoopy appearance just isn’t enough, and why not throw the Hulk’s old Tales to Astonish pal into the mix:

Finally, if not a reference to a comic character, at least a comic mainstay, with the Charles Atlas “Made a Man out of Mac”/Flex Mentallo beach incident used to illustrate a question I often pondered as a kid, why Banner never made lemonade out of lemons:


“Don’t make me Mad. You wouldn’t like me when I get Mad.”

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