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SMASH! Breaking the HULK Code!

If you're like me, in the last couple of years you have a new ritual when you tote your new Marvel comics home. You sort out the Digital Edition issues, open them all about seven pages in from the back cover, peel off the sticker that covers the digital code, and then repeat with the next book. In the end, you have a stack of comic books that are all open this way to make it easy to enter all your digital codes at once.

If you haven't figured out that it's easier and faster this way, you're welcome.

Anyway, this week I'd picked up the first two issues of the Marvel Knights - Hulk book by Joe Keatinge, Piotr Kowalksi, and Nick Filardi. It's a four issue miniseries, which not unlike a recent Wolverine arc, starts off with a Bruce Banner who has lost memory of himself and his Hulk identity.

But back to my stack. Having entered the code for issue 1, I slid that book off the stack exposing the open issue 2. And did a double-take. Here's what you would have seen if you'd been looking over my shoulder…

Marvel Knights Hulk - Issue 1

Marvel Knights Hulk - Issue 2

SMASH is what leaped out to me first. And of course the huge image of the Hulk, well, smashing. A full disclosure requires we note that while that is a Hulk in the first picture, it's not The HULK. But we'll stray away from spoilers here. It's remarkable enough that the content, layout and action mirrors so strongly at the same point in the first two issues.

But that's not the real surprise.

When we look at the two inset frames of people watching the SMASHING, they look pretty crazily similar. Expression, dialogue, and even the angles of their heads. The third image below lays one frame transparently over the other so you can really appreciate this.

Inset Frames and Overlain

Of course this could all be a coincidence. There's enough different here that we're doubting it's a case of lazy artist. Rather we think someone is having a bit of fun with us, seeing if we noticed.

Well, we did!

Ric Bretschneider

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