2008’s Incredible Hulk is the only MCU movie that Honest Trailers hasn’t hilariously mocked, so in honor of Infinity War‘s arrival, they took on the big green rage monster.
Bruce Banner has long been one of my favorite characters, but prior to Mark Ruffalo taking over the role in The Avengers, the scientist/smasher hadn’t seen a truly satisfying movie incarnation. You might even say that the Hulk had seemed a bit cursed. I adore Ruffalo’s performance, and the quirky shy brilliance he layers Bruce with, but we also have to acknowledge that on the Hulk side, it helps a lot that technology has come a long way since Ang Lee’s 2003 Hulk and Louis Leterrier’s 2008 The Incredible Hulk, the subject of the Honest Trailer here. It’s easier to take the Hulk seriously when he can blend in seamlessly with the environment and really look like Mark Ruffalo made big and green.
The Incredible Hulk isn’t a movie that I want to bleach from my brain like Hulk, but it’s also very much a product of the time before Marvel Studios was the sleek movie-making juggernaut that it is now. It feels rather like a rough draft for what would come later, and the movie was famously plagued by “creative differences” that eventually lead to star Edward Norton—who also rewrote chunks of the script—to not return to the MCU as Bruce. Norton is a good actor, but I’m glad that the part was passed onto Ruffalo. These days it’s hard for me to imagine another Bruce Banner.
The Honest Trailer here is some light-hearted fun. “Meet Bruce Banner,” it begins, with a shot of Ruffalo from The Avengers. “No, not the one people like.” Then we move onto a shot of Eric Bana. “Who’s that? He never played the Hulk. Did he?” Honest Trailers has also appeared to have bleached Hulk from their brains. Everyone should. “No, you know the one I’m talking about. The Death to Smoochy guy. There he is! Ed Norton shines as the first Marvel actor to show off how many crunches he for the part.”
One really good point that the trailer brings up is that Liv Tyler’s Betty Ross just dropped off the face of the MCU, even though her father, General Thunderbolt Ross, is still running around in it. I rather wish they’d kept Betty—or even just the idea of Betty—rather than the Bruce/Natasha thing that the MCU seems intent on making happen for reasons unknown.
As the trailer reminds us, The Incredible Hulk is probably better than we remember. So if you’re doing a massive pre-Infinity War marathon, it might not deserve to be left out. Unlike Hulk.
(via Honest Trailers, image: Marvel Studios)
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