Appearing in "A Monster in Our Midst!"
- Absorbing Man
- They Who Wield Power (Shadow only)
- Bruno Caper
- United States of America
- Tinkerer's tank
Synopsis for "A Monster in Our Midst!"
After learning that Doctor Strange couldn't bring Jarella back to life, a heartbroken Hulk passes through New York City. Although the population is fearful of the Hulk, the brute does nothing to attack the onlookers and authorities, in fact he acts as though they aren't even there.
Meanwhile, some crooks decked out with a tank given to them by the Tinkerer uses the weapon to free their leader, Bruno Caper, from the Men's lock up. Thanks to their advanced weaponry they are able to break Caper out. When they flee the scene they spot the Hulk walking across their path and make the poor decision of hitting the man-monster with their vehicle. This snaps the Hulk out of his sorrowful trance and enrages him. The Hulk then chases after the tank and easily trashes it, deciding that he will react to those who attack to him in kind. But, before the Hulk can smash the men inside the damaged vehicle the police begin arriving on the scene. Seeing this as far too much trouble, the Hulk bounds away so he can be left alone. While back at the men's lock-up, a pipe was damaged in the break-out and is now dripping on a cardboard box that has been locked in one of the high security cells. Not far away, the Hulk ducks into an alleyway and falls asleep from complete exhaustion. As the Hulk sleep he calms down enough that he reverts back into Bruce Banner.
At that same time in Los Angeles, Jim Wilson has gotten himself into some trouble in the neighborhood of Watts. After easily escaping his attackers, Jim tries to figure out what his next move is. Spotting a newspaper headline about the Hulk, Jim decides that it is time to call in some help from an old friend.
Back in New York, Bruce wakes up in the alley thanks to the noise caused from some garbage men doing their rounds. After being told to scram, Banner decides to try and start cleaning up his life. Surprised to find a travellers check still intact in his pockets he uses it to buy some new clothing. Still, Banner is depressed and considers buying a gun and committing suicide for a moment, but quickly dispells the idea deciding to keep on fighting to survive. Finding a rooming house with an apartment for rent, Bruce decides to try and get one. He is greeted by April Sommers, a tenant who looks after the property for the landlord. She offers Banner a room that was once owned by Kropotkin the Magician, who she was forced to evict for outstanding rent. Banner accepts the room and left alone to settle in, Banner hopes that this is the rebirth of his human identity and the death of the Hulk.
While at Gamma Base, General Ross tries to talk to Glenn Talbot about the his problems and how they are impacting his marriage to Betty. Talbot tells his commanding officer that his personal affairs are none of his business. Their argument is then interrupted by Doc Samson who has just returned from the desert where he has found a mysterious blond haired man wandering out there alone. Since Gamma Base is out in the middle of nowhere, Doc Samson wonders where this stranger came from.
At that moment at the Men's lock-up in New York, some guards check the high security room and are shocked to discover the prisoner they had in the cardboard box managed to escape. This prisoner turns out to be the Absorbing Man who has been waiting for the guards so he could break out of his cell. As the Absorbing Man makes his escape, a news crew begins a live broadcast of his rampage outside the jail. This report is watched by both Bruce and April. Banner tries to keep himself under control so he will not transform into the Hulk. Thankfully for Bruce, the Absorbing Man is suddenly teleported away allowing him to calm down. However, the threat of the Absorbing Man is far from over. In a new costume, Carl Creel finds himself in front of a mysterious tribunal calling themselves They Who Wield Power. They tell Creel that they have sought him out so that he can use his power to destroy the Hulk. Wanting a rematch against the green-skinned brute, the Absorbing Man agrees to work for these mystery men.
- The trouble that Jim Wilson has gotten involved in is with the Coropration as is revealed throughout the course of Incredible Hulk #209 and resolving itself in Incredible Hulk #237.
- Banner mentions the death of Jarella which occurred in Incredible Hulk #205. The Hulk failed to get Doctor Strange to try and revive her in issues 206 & 207.
- Kropotkin makes an appearance in Incredible Hulk #214.
- Mention is made of the marital problems that have been facing Glenn Talbot and his wife Betty. This has been the result of his being in a catatonic state from Incredible Hulk #188 to 200.
- The mystery man that Doc Samson brings to Gamma Base is revealed to be the Leader in Incredible Hulk #223.
- Mention is made to the Absorbing Man's defeat at the hands of Thor in Thor #236. Banner recalls his previous battle against the Absorbing Man in Incredible Hulk #125.
- The identities of They Who Wield Power are revealed in Incredible Hulk #241
- Cover art: the original version, similar to the final one, was done by Dave Cockrum but was not used.
- Letters (story pages): Rosen pages 1 & 2, Watanabe pages 3-17.
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