Rampage (UK) #17 (Story 1)

Background

Rampage was a UK-only magazine for the teen market published by Panini Comics from late 2004 to early 2007.

Each three-weekly issue featured a couple of short out-of-continuity stories with Marvel comic characters. The rest of the issue was filled-out with puzzles, posters and "fact" files, along with a solid helping of comp-ad-titions and promo-mercials for Marvel products, along with Star Wars and other non-Marvel movies and games.

The creative team from Rampage seems to cycle through the same basic list of UK creative talent that produces the Spidey stories for Spectacular Spider-Man (UK Magazine), so it's perhaps not surprising that the look and feel of the Spider-Man stories is very similar between them.

Spidey doesn't appear in either of this issue's two short stories, but we'll review them anyhow, starting with this six page "Incredible Hulk" story (also starring Thor and Loki).

Story 'Gods and Monsters'

  Rampage (UK) #17 (Story 1)
Summary: 22-Feb-2006 (Spider-Man References, Hulk & Thor Story)
Publisher: Panini Comics
Editor: Tom O'Malley
Pencils: Jon Haward
Inker: Lee Townsend
Lettering: Peri Godbold
Colorist: James Offredi

In New York City, Doctor Donald Blake abandons his hospital duties to transform into Thor so that he can investigate reports of a rampaging monster.

Thor arrives on the scene to find that monster is the Incredible Hulk. The Hulk is lashing out wildly, driven mad by hallucinations caused by Loki. At this point Loki launches stage 2 of his plan, which is to have Hulk see Thor as a ghastly monster and attack him. To add a twist, Loki enchants Hulk to see Loki as Rick Jones – long-standing best buddy of the Hulk.

Hulk hammers Thor. Rick Jones (secretly Loki, are you following this?) cheers on Hulk as he smashes Thor.

But Hulk stops just before the fatal blow. Hulk has noticed that Rick Jones has the wrong voice. And why would Rick Jones be urging Hulk to destroy a brutal nightmare of a monster?

With those clues, Hulk's superior intelligence pierces the veil of Loki's deception... and...

General Comments

What the frell?

Seriously? Famously dense Mister Hulk pauses mid-rampage to analyse a mis-characterization, and then sees through Loki's deceptive spell without further assistance?

Overall Rating

There's no writer credit on this issue, and I can understand why. Nobody was prepared to accept responsibility for this turkey.

One Web.

Footnote

Marvel UK (aka Panini Comics) released only two original content magazines in that month (Feb 2006).

There's this issue Rampage #17, containing a story named "Gods and Monsters" featuring Loki and set in New York.

Then there was Spectacular Spider-Man (UK Magazine) #129, containing a story named "Gods and Monsters" featuring Loki and set in New York.

That's some impressive lack of creativity!