Waiting For The Trade – The Incredible Hercules: Assault on New Olympus

Writers: Greg Pak & Fred Van Lente
Artists: Rodney Buchemi, Reilly Brown, Jason Paz
Colourist: Guillem Mari
Letterer: Simon Bowland
Collects: Incredible Hercules #138-141

So this is what it’s all been building up to. Since the demi-god and professional quaffer Hercules teamed up with the 7th smartest person on the planet their adventures have led them to this point. Along the way the cast of characters has grown and at times this now feels like a team book rather than a solo one…and unfortunately the more characters that join the less I’ve enjoyed. I think it’s because the strength of the book was in its unlikely lead duo and their relationships. For opposite ends of the spectrum they shared a friendship from which they both benefited, through tough times and hard challenges.

The crescendo is a battle against New Olympus (what do you mean you already guessed!?) with Herc, Amadeus and a whole host of Marvel’s finest taking on Hera and her hordes. But there’s little of the witty interplay between the characters and it doesn’t feel like even the most dramatic of turns has any real impact. Major events unfold in this book and pass without eliciting any kind of response from me.

The art is okay, I like Buchemi’s curvaceous female characters but his blokes have a bit of the Scott Kolins about them and from me that’s not a compliment.

I fail to understand the need for the Avengers to appear in the book, I know Herc is well-connected in the Marvel U but this just felt like a crossover for crossover’s sake. They don’t really do anything other than have some one-on-one fights with appropriate villains for their power-set.

A disappointing end to a great series.

Reviewer: Dave Williams

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