The Northlake Public Library in suburban Chicago unveiled its Hulk statue earlier this month to a crowd of more than 300. ^Trustee Tom Mukite, who joined the board specifically to spearhead the statue campaign, called the event the “largest turnout at the library ever.”
Mukite and the other trustees launched an Indiegogo campaign in April to make improvements to the library that included the addition of a Hulk statue to help attract visitors. According to the campaign’s page, “Today’s libraries are celebrating creativity, entertainment and life long learning, and they are doing it with technology and popular materials including graphic novels.” It continued, “We want to smash [libraries'] stuffy reputation with a 9 foot tall Incredible Hulk Statue.” In explaining why the Hulk is an appropriate decoration for the library, the campaign said, “Just as Dr. Bruce Banner transforms into the Hulk, we want our library community members to make their own personal transformations through books, programs, and awesome new equipment. [...] The project will show off the fun side of the library and get the community talking. The Hulk will force patrons to look at the library in a whole new way.”
Bangkok’s prestigious Chulalongkorn University has apologized for a student mural depicting Adolf Hitler among a group of superheroes.
In a letter sent today to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which had complained about the banner, the Thai school said the administrators and students “deeply regret the appearance of this deeply offensive mural.” The university found that the students who created the image were “unaware of its significance” and have been given a verbal warning.
The enormous graduation banner, hung outside the Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts building, bore the word “Congratulations” above images of Superman, Batman, the Incredible Hulk and other heroes, and included Hitler in the background giving the Nazi salute.
A library in suburban Chicago fell well short of its $30,000 fundraising goal to purchase graphic novels, a comics-creating station and a 9-foot-tall statue of the Incredible Hulk, but thanks to the generosity of a California businessman, it’s still getting a life-sized Green Goliath to call its own.
The trustees of the Northlake Public Library launched an Indiegogo campaign on April 26 in hopes of expanding its collection of about 2,300 graphic novels and manga, adding computer software and hardware, and buying a Hulk statue that might help attract visitors. “This larger-than-life literary character will become a giant green beacon of light to highlight our graphic novel collection, our creation station … not to mention the library’s sense of humor and whimsy,” the campaign description reads. “The project will show off the fun side of the library and get the community talking. The HULK will force patrons to look at the library in a whole new way.”
But with mere days to go, the Indiegogo drive has raised just $3,710; the statue alone costs in the neighborhood of $8,000.
Earlier this week, it was Chris Davis Day at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, with the O’s celebrating the breakthrough season of first baseman by giving away bright orange T-shirts emblazoned with the unmistakable silhouette of Baltimore’s current favorite son as he cracks yet another ball over the outfield wall.
After spending the early years of his career bouncing between the Texas Rangers minor and Major league teams, Davis was traded to the Orioles in 2011, becoming an everyday player in time to experience the team’s 2012 rise and run at the playoffs before exploding this summer. As of this writing, he leads the American League in home runs, slugging and OBPS (on-base plus slugging), and has been alternating the lead in batting average and on base percentage with a handful of other players, including last year’s Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera and fellow Oriole Manny Machado.
But what, pray tell, does this have to do with comics?
Artist Mike Del Mundo has been turning heads with his covers to Marvel’s schizophrenic X-Men: Legacy, but we’re learning there’s more to Del Mundo than his mental (in a good way) work. I have no other way to say this, so I’ll borrow a line from a famous movie: Mike Del Mundo has a Hulk.
The above illustration is Del Mundo’s contribution to Marvel’s “Time Travel” series of variant covers, this one appearing on the upcoming Indestructible Hulk #12. But as I explored Del Mundo’s DeviantArt gallery, I found the artist has more than just a casual interest in the Green Goliath, especially putting him in situations outside of what you’d normally think.
Witness the Incredible Hulk … at a spin class:
Happy Mother’s Day and welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at the comics, books and what have you we’ve been checking out lately. Joining us today is Allison Baker, co-publisher of Bandette, Edison Rex and all the other Monkeybrain Comics you can find on comiXology.
To see what Allison and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.
Just as Dr. Bruce Banner transforms into the Hulk, we want our library community members to make their own personal transformations through books, programs, and awesome new equipment,” Tom Mukite, a trustee of the Northlake Public Library, writes on the project’s Indiegogo page. “This larger-than-life literary character will become a giant green beacon of light to highlight our graphic novel collection, our creation station … not to mention the library’s sense of humor and whimsy. The project will show off the fun side of the library and get the community talking. The HULK will force patrons to look at the library in a whole new way.”
According to the Franklin Park Herald-Journal, Mukite became a library trustee in October specifically so he could spearhead the campaign. “We’ve been working on The Hulk statue since August when we first got the idea for it,” he tells the newspaper. “It was running a bit slow. We have to get everything approved by the trustees. I figured if I was on the board, everything would be easier.”
The library has about 2,300 graphic novels and manga, but hopes to greatly expand the collection. In addition to the books and the statue, made by licensed sculptor Studio Oxmox, the goal is to purchase an iMac with a drawing pad, editing software, a 3D printer and more.
So far, the Northlake Public Library has raised $775. The campaign ends June 9.
Thirty-six questions. Six answers. One random number generator. Welcome to Robot Roulette, where creators roll the virtual dice and answer our questions about their lives, careers, interests and more.
Stepping up to the wheel today is Greg Rucka, the prolific and wonderful writer of Stumptown, Lady Sabre & The Pirates of the Ineffable Aether, Whiteout, Queen & Country, Punisher, Gotham Central and the upcoming Lazarus with Michael Lark and Santiago Arcas, which is due from Image this summer.
Now let’s get to it …
Less than two weeks after suffering a stroke, writer Peter David is able to walk forward and backward, with assistance, at the rehabilitation center in
New York Florida.
“He is working on balance and trying to get the right leg to cooperate with what he wants it to do,” his wife Kathleen wrote today. “There was a minor set back with the arm that is being worked on. He does have a better range of motion than he has had since all this started so we are cautiously happy about it but he has a long way to go.”
Kathleen David, who last week asked those interested in helping to cover insurance co-pays to purchase some of Peter’s books from Crazy 8 Press, today said she will add a donate button to his website on Monday, and plans to organize online auctions. She also encouraged fans to send him cards and assorted well wishes:
c/o Second Age, Inc.,
P.O. Box 239,
Bayport, NY 11705
On a related note, EW.com has published an essay Peter wrote in early December to mark the 50th anniversary of the Incredible Hulk. In the piece, the writer recounts being offered the reins of the title in 1986, his approach to Bruce Banner and, 12 years later, the circumstances that led to his departure.
“Out of fifty years of his existence, I took up twelve straight years (plus annuals and such) covering the concerns and chaos that the Hulk had to face daily,” he wrote. “If I’d known that I’d be leaving the book the issue afterward, I’d never have killed off Betty (although since then she was brought back to life and is now the red She-Hulk, so that made a lot of difference.) I had up periods and down periods. Times where I had the book fully under control and times where I was roughing it and had no clue what I was doing. In retrospect, if I had to draw one conclusion from my time on the series, it was this: Hunh. Nope. I still got nothin’.”
Censorship | At least one comic, alas unnamed, was among the thousands of books removed this week from a Turkish government restricted list. Most of the bans were widely ignored anyway, but Metin Celal Zeynioglu, the head of Turkey’s publishers’ union, pointed out one important effect of lifting them: “Many of the students arrested in demonstrations are kept in prison because they’re carrying banned books. From now on, we won’t be able to use that as an excuse.” [The Australian]
Publishing | Tom Spurgeon’s latest holiday interview is with Shannon Watters, the editor of BOOM! Studios’ children’s comics line, which includes Adventure Time, Bravest Warriors and Peanuts. [The Comics Reporter]
“The great thing about the Hulk is that, as we saw in the Avengers movie, I don’t care if you’re 300 yards away when he changes. You pee your pants because you know your life is likely over, whether you’re his friend or his enemy. It’s like being in the middle of a lightning storm — you just don’t know. And I never want to lose sight of that sense of danger to the book.”
– Mark Waid, discussing the Green Goliath as a force of nature, and a weapon of mass destruction, in Marvel’s Indestructible Hulk, which debuts today
Nine Marvel series will end in October even as the publisher debuts Uncanny Avengers #1, the first title in its sweeping Marvel NOW! initiative.
According to Marvel’s October solicitations, which went live this morning, the month will mark the conclusions of Captain America, Fantastic Four, FF, Incredible Hulk, Invincible Iron Man, New Mutants, The Mighty Thor, Uncanny X-Men and X-Men Legacy.
Naturally, some of those aren’t entirely unexpected, as the new Uncanny Avengers, by Rick Remender and John Cassaday, will be joined in November by All-New X-Men, by Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen, followed by Avengers, by Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opena, in December and New Avengers, by Hickman and Steve Epting, in January. Likewise, Ed Brubaker revealed two weeks ago that he’s ending his acclaimed seven-year-run on Captain America, a departure that dovetails nicely into Marvel’s relaunch plans.
However, what will replace such mainstay titles as Fantastic Four, Incredible Hulk, Invincible Iron Man and The Mighty Thor, and when, remains to be seen. Although it’s unlikely the publisher will go too long without versions of those comics on the shelves, Marvel has promised a slow rollout of relaunches between October and February.
Even if you don’t understand the appeal of attending conventions dressed as your favorite comic-book or cartoon character, you have to admire dedicated cosplayers. Oh, not the ones who slap on a headband and call themselves “Naruto.” No, I’m talking about the ones who spend countless hours sewing costumes and then browbeating their friends into donning the costume of the appropriate teammate or supporting character.
Or, say, someone like this guy in Brazil, who decided to go all out as the Incredible Hulk, only to discover — too late! — that the green body paint isn’t entirely water-soluble.
According to Extra (Google translation), Paulo Henrique dos Santos dressed up as the Green Goliath for Sunday’s Challenge for Peace run in Rio De Janeiro, where the costume was a smash. But three miles and more than 20 baths later, he’s still unable to revert to human form.
The Giant-Size Marvel blog found this awesome example of Jim Steranko channeling Robert Crumb by way of Friends of Ol’ Marvel (FOOM), the Marvel fan club from the ’70s. In case it’s too small to read, that’s a FOOM membership card in Hulk’s hand.
Now if someone would only uncover a lost John Buscema drawing of Mr. Natural as Odin.
Entertainment Weekly has the first look at wax versions of Spider-Man, Iron Man and the Incredible Hulk from Madame Tussauds New York’s “Marvel Super Heroes Cinema 4D Experience,” which opens April 26. According to the museum’s London website, the interactive exhibit features the S.H.I.E.L.D. command center, with “Hulk’s gigantic legs can be seen standing astride a massive plinth, his torso disappearing through a gaping hole in the ceiling” — that explains why the Green Goliath’s head is poking out of a manhole in the photo — the Hall of Heroes, the Heroes Gallery and the Super Hero Test Area, patterned after Tony Stark’s work room.
See the full photo below, along with the trailer for the Madame Tussauds London exhibit.