Thursday, February 19, 2009

LBJ Loves the Hulk, but Nixon hates Greenskin!

When you’ve got a rampaging green Hulk running around the country, naturally the commander in chief needs to be involved!

Tales to Astonish 88, President Johnson wants to pardon the Hulk!

Lyndon B. Johnson sees that Hulk fella on television (in Tales to Astonish #88) and thinks, hey Doc Banner ain’t so bad after all.  He calls up General Thunderbolt Ross and authorizes a full pardon for the Hulk.  Unfortunately, Ross decides not to give the pardon after the Hulk smashes a Dairy Queen.

Hulk 139, Ross speaks to Nixon

Fortunately for General Ross, the conservatives moved into the White House in 1969.  Ross has so much juice in this administration that he can get a direct line to President Nixon whenever he calls!  Nixon looks pretty relaxed in this scene.  Was he drunk?

Hulk 139, Nixon okays the Leader, does Congress know

I suspect inebriation, because on the next page he authorizes Ross’ secret project that involves the Leader.  Not only that, Nixon compounds this mistake by making Spiro Agnew the liaison!  What’s Nixon thinking?  He’s not thinking, he’s drinking himself right out of office!

Hulk 147, Nixon confused by Spiro Agnew

Later on, both Spiro Agnew and Nixon appear to check out the project to destroy the Hulk.  Nixon is utterly baffled by Agnew’s penchant for alliteration.  I suspect this was a turning point in their relationship.  A few months later, when Agnew offered his resignation for pleading no contest to tax evasion, Nixon accepted it gladly.  The Leader scandal was never uncovered by Woodward or Bernstein.

Hulk 174, Nixon mourns the passing of the Hulk

In a rare sober moment, we see Nixon mourning the apparent loss of the Hulk, along with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.  I imagine it was a somber moment as Nixon could see his own fate looming on the horizon. 

I’ll bet anything that Herb Trimpe voted for John Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey, and George McGovern!  Nuff said.

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