Synopsis for “The Monster and the Madman!”
Continued from last issue…
General Ross, Major Talbot, Betty Ross, and Doc Samson are still reeling over the supposed death of the Hulk, completely unaware that this has all been a ruse created by Dr. Doom so that the Latverian monarch can exploit Banner’s intelligence and the Hulk’s brute strength to further his goals of world domination.
In far off Latveria, Banner has been subjected to Doom’s subliminal inducer making him a loyal slave to Dr. Doom and put to work designing weapons for the dictator. When Doom brings his love Valeria to meet Banner and gloat over his usefulness. However this fails to warm Valeria’s heart, and when she learns that Doom is using Banner to recreate the Gamma Bomb, she is horrified. At the mere mention of the Hulk’s name, Banner begins to panic and transform into the creature, however the brute is easily subdued by Doom who knocks out the beast with a powerful gas, causing him to revert back to Bruce Banner. Doom then explains that he intends on using the Gamma Bomb to force the annexation of the surrounding countries.
Although the bomb is not complete, Doom orders his minions to send the Hulk out with it strapped to his back to attack his enemies. Implanting in his mind that his enemies are nearby, the Hulk is sent out with the gamma bomb. However, much to Doom’s anger the bomb goes off too soon and harms nobody. He then learns that Valeria sabotaged his plot, using his own subliminal inducer to change Banner back to normal. Before Doom can have Valeria thrown in his dungeon, the castle is attacked by a furious Hulk.
When their battle puts Valeria at risk of injury, Dr. Doom selflessly uses his force-field to protect her. However, the Hulk is still looking for a fight and is about to crush Doom to death, until Valeria, not wanting to see her one time love killed begs the Hulk to spare him. Making a connection between this situation and his own failed relationship with Betty, the Hulk glumly wonders why he hurts beautiful women with his actions and decides to leave.
Bounding off into the distance, the Hulk departs Latervia with Dr. Doom shouting at him to come back and finish their fight.