Tales to Astonish Issue 95- “A World He Never Made!”
Published September 1967
A startling, spectacular star-studded sensation by: Similin’ Stan Lee and Magificent Marie Severin
Embellished by: Herb Trimpe
Lettered by: Sam Rosen
The Hulk remains aboard the spaceship headed for the Planet Wundagore II, when the High Evolutionary calls for the original pilot, Sir Ram. However, the Goat Knight is either dead or knocked out due the Hulk punching him in the head. The High Evolutionary calls for Ram, warning that a cosmic storm is about to erupt near the planet. The Hulk doesn’t know what to do and ends up making the situation worse by smashing the control panel. Confused by all the buzzing lights and sounds, he goes to seek out the pilot who is still in the cargo bay.
The High Evolutionary is definitely banking on the Hulk arriving because time grows short and all of his beast men will destroy the planet and him as well.
Back on the ship, Sir Ram tries to stabilize the ship to avoid the cosmic storm. He succeeds, but ends up dying as a result of absorbing all that radiation. The Hulk cries at another loss of a new friend, and after absorbing all that cosmic radiation as well, turns back into Bruce Banner. The High Evolutionary has managed to turn on the ship’s cameras and notices that the Hulk has turned into a normal human being, and now must take the ship in for a safe landing. Banner notices the dead body of Sir Ram and thinks the Hulk may have killed him, and can’t do anything but watch as he descends into Wundagore II.
Banner leaves the ship, and finds the High Evolutionary, who confirms that he is human under that armor. The host gives his new guest a tour of this highly advanced laboratory, and while Banner’s back is turned, he zaps him with a “vacuum ray.” He traps Banner in a glass cage and and tells time that he cannot afford the Hulk to rampage in his lab too early. Now the High Evolutionary is ready to advance Banner’s evolution by 10 million years! What the hell?!
Tales to Astonish Issue 96- “What Have I Created?”
Published October 1967
Brought to you by our gregarious group of goofy, green-skinned gremlins:
Stan (the Man) Lee, the Brighter Writer
Marie (the She) Severin, the Smartest Artist
Herb Trimpe, the Distincter Inker
Al Kurzrok, the Betterer Letterer
and Honest Irving, the Bony Phony
For some reason, the High Evolutionary took down his protective plastic dome, especially as the New Men start invading his lab. One manages to land a punch on him, but HE activates his force field just in time to protect himself. The experiment is cancelled and he frees Banner and demands he changes into the Hulk, but with no time he leaves the milksop and attacks the beast men on his own. Banner isn’t sure what the hell is going on, especially without his glasses, and turns into the Hulk just as a beast man throws him across the room. The slugfest begins as the Hulk starts beating up the Knights of Wundagore in pairs.
Meanwhile, the High Evolutionary is severely wounded and takes off his mask. He is indeed an old man, and in order for him to survive, he must use the Evolutionary ray that he used to create the New Men on himself. He strips down to his skivvys right in the middle of the melee and zaps himself. A loud explosion occurs because the ray was set on 11, and he reappears as enlightened like the Buddha or something. Apparently, evolution leads to enlightenment which is a pretty strange thing to see in the middle of a battle between a brute and some animal men. He reverts everyone back into animals, and finally takes the Hulk back to Earth. The High Evolutionary’s state is too much for his mortal coil and so he becomes one with the cosmos.
The Hulk, trapped in his immortality, looks to the stars once again.
That was some freaky new age stuff, especially when we are now led to believe that science trumps the current form of religion and can lead one to enlightenment and salvation. How the hell will the High Evolutionary return to wreak more havoc in the Marvel Universe? Let’s leave that for later.