The Players – Hulk, Machine Man, Rick Jones, Hercules
The Story – It is a whole new post-apocalyptic world and trying to find his way in it is the Hulk.
The Take – The story of how the Hulk became the Maestro continues here in this second issue written by long-time Hulk scribe Peter David and it is just as good as the first issue was with a couple of surprises to keep things interesting. Roaming the country, the Hulk is amazed at just how well humanity has destroyed itself and while that does not necessarily make him sad, it is what they have done to the land and to the animals that live upon it that really hurts. Soon he finds that which was all but thought to be extinct – mankind and he finds them living beneath the earth with Machine Man leading them. It is here that he learns about New York and how some of it is still standing with a lot of what is left of mankind congregating there under a leader who calls himself the Maestro. It intrigues the Hulk to no end, so much so that he finds he has to go there and meet this mysterious person. David writes a mesmerizing tale, one that had not only hooked the reader in from the first issue but years before when the tale of the Maestro first manifested and he was a villain already, his throne and his rule absolute. Here that has not happened as of yet but as the book moves onwards, one knows that it is only a matter of time and it is here that readers get to see it happen. The artwork by Germán Peralta and Dale Keown is as stunning as it was in the last issue and if there is one man who needs to take over once Joe Bennett’s tenure on the regular Hulk book has ended, it is Peralta. Also in this issue, Rick Jones is introduced as an old man in a wheelchair, just as fans might remember him from the Future Imperfect series and one can only imagine what that first meeting between the two is going to be like. While it does not seem like there is a lot going on, there in fact is as David is slowly building up the world in which the Hulk now finds himself, a lot of it not specifically told in words as it is in pictures as done by Peralta. It is a necessary thing to do in order to get the Hulk to where he will eventually become the Maestro for it will not be only one thing that will trigger that transformation but a bunch of them and seeing it so far has been a lot of fun. With a great cliff-hanger to leave it all on, the second issue of Maestro is well worth the time and money.
Worth It? – Yes.