Every issue began with the Hulk.
Even now, re-reading his old tales gives me more far pleasure than it ought to. Why is this? No doubt because anyone with any sense wants to be able to bend street lamps with their bare hands, and thus the Hulk appeals straight to the heart of what it is that makes super-hero comics appealing.
Reading The Incredible Hulk #127, a couple of days ago, for my post on that issue, reminded me just how much I love old Hulk stories. And so, fired up with a suitable passion, here's my ten favourite Hulk covers that were drawn by Happy Herb Trimpe - the Hulk artist of the 1970s.
The Hulk finally finds love - but not for long, as naughty old Psyklop crashes the party.
Ka-Zar swings into action as Umbu the Unliving strikes.
Let's face it, what sort of mad person wouldn't want to read a comic that features a monster called, "Umbu the Unliving"?
It's an orange monster vs a green monster!
It's the Hulk vs the Thing!
It's all happening on the side of the Baxter Building!
The Wolverine makes his debut and heads straight for our hero.
Thanks to Kang, time weighs heavily on the Hulk's shoulders.
Can it be? Can it be curtains at last for our hero?
It's Ka-Zar again, as Herb gives us serpentine layout packed with power and portent.
I love that colour scheme.
I love the Glob.
I love the cover.
It's got the Hulk. It's got the Valkyrie. It's got a storm. It's got the Empire State Building.
Not only that but just dig how the angle of the masthead conflicts with that of the rest of the shot, to give us a cover seething with drama.
Doc Samson makes his debut.
And, just for a moment, he manages to convince us he's actually a threat to the Hulk.