Stu West in To Be HULKinued 185 words

Tales to Astonish #83

"Less Than Monster, More Than Man" — Let's say it's 1966 and you're in the mood for a story about a secretive high-tech espionage organization whose members are referred to only by a numeral ("Number One", "Number Two", "Number Six" and so on) as they carry out strange actions in pursuit of obscure but presumably sinister goals. Unfortunately, The Prisoner won't debut on TV for another year so you'll have to settle for reading Tales to Astonish, where the Secret Empire also does all of the above. Sadly, the Secret Empire must be the most self-sabotagingly vindictive shadowy enterprise of all time: after failing to kidnap Betty Ross last issue, Boomerang embarks on a perfectly credible Plan B, but with no support from Numbers Two to Nine, who are busy meeting to discuss killing him off until Nine throws a stun grenade at the rest. It's the sort of group where the failure to wear a metal bucket under your villain robes can be described as "blind confidence". Meanwhile, the Hulk goes out looking for food and comes back carrying General Ross and Rick Jones. OKAY.

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