Last autumn, while browsing that emporium of human curiosities known as Wal-mart, my son and I happened on the Halloween costume isle. Hidden among the Disney characters and creepy scarecrows, Will spotted it, a gloriously weird costume, none other than the Venomized Hulk!
|Oh yeah, we bought the costume|
The costume was a strange amalgam of The Incredible Hulk and the Spider-man villain, Venom. We were both in awe of it, snatched it off the shelf, and ran to the checkout line while knocking down rival shoppers for good measure. Yes, this was months ago and Will trick-or-treated in said costume and all that jazz. But that's not where the story of the Venomized Hulk ends, oh no, in fact it's just the beginning of my Venomized Hulk-a-mania!
|In the mouth of Hulk madness|
It began slowly at first, with a little marker doodle on a sheet of construction paper. Half-Hulk, half-Venom? What the? My feeble mind could not seem to comprehend this abomination.
|That don't make no kinda sense...|
As the days grew shorter and the memory of Halloween faded, the nagging quest for details on just where Will's costume version of the Venomized Hulk came from yielded little results. Did Hulk willingly team up with Venom or was it a hostile takeover? Perhaps I sucked at internet searches or perhaps Halloween costumes are only intended to be understood by the seventeen and under crowd? Whatever the case, I pressed on and the doodles continued.
|More half-Hulk, half-Venom insanity|
|What's up with those little Venom heads sprouting out of the Venomized Hulk?|
My eureka moment came sometime in early December, as I completed my then daily ritual of scrawling and pinning scraps of Venomized Hulk information to my conspiracy wall:
|It all leads back to Hulk... or maybe Venom...|
While looping the red yarn around the last pin, which oddly led to a photo of Sam Neil, it hit me. The random doodles weren't random, they were in fact... panels! Yes, that's it, they were telling a story!
|Panel borders added along with numbering, bringing order to chaos|
With new direction in life, I was finally able to tear down the conspiracy wall (after collecting a scanning a random collection of doodles for posterity) and press forward. My new mission: abandon understanding the Venomized Hulk costume and just make a single page comic about him/it!
Since it has been years since I made a comic page, I had to find my old breakdown template. Once that was done, I set about making four options for this single page comic: one with Venom overtaking the Hulk and three with the Hulk joining forces with Venom. Why not two of each? I have no idea - I didn't plan this too well.
|Decisions, decisions, RAAWR is always good|
By this time it was mid-December 2021 and I was certain I'd have this single page knocked out by the new year. Spoiler alert: I didn't. But never fear, I have some solid progress on rough pencils and I actually believe I may complete this page (traditional ink and all). So if you've gotten infected by my Venomized Hulk costume craziness too, be on the lookout for the second and final part of this series where you'll discover which of the four options I choose!