The Hulk Deserves Better: Considering How Horrible the Avengers are to Bruce Banner

I’ve been deep into writing my book (yay!) so I’ve not posted a new piece for over a month.  To help fill the quiet during the book writing process, here’s a piece I wrote but never had the chance to post.  Enjoy!

As a character, that Hulk has always fascinated me.  When I was a kid he wasn’t a Spider-Man-level favorite nor was he quite at the level of Thor.  But he was a strong (heh heh, no pun intended) contender for that third favorite spot, alongside characters like Wolverine or Venom.  And if we look at the sheer number of their comics I read, Hulk totally blew Wolverine and Venom out of the water (obviously we’re excluding team comics here because why should my opening anecdote become needlessly complicated with nostalgic rankings?).  I began reading The Incredible Hulk amidst Peter David’s legendary eleven year run on the title (1987-1998).  While I’d read forwards and backwards from this point, my first Hulk comics were during the period Doc Samson had successfully merged all of Bruce Banner/the Hulk’s personalities.  Banner’s intellect was paired with the Grey Hulk’s confidence (and eyes/hairstyle) in a body carrying the Green Hulk’s size, color, and power.  It was a good time to be a Hulk fan…because this incarnation of the Hulk skirted a lot of the things about the Hulk that always made me sad. 

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What does YOUR Hulk look like?

As a kid, I was always reading and re-reading The Incredible Hulk.  In fact, I have one comic box from my youth entirely filled with nothing but Hulk comics.  There was just something about this monstrous hero that I found exciting!  However, reading about the Hulk also made me sad.  So often he’s the epitome of isolation, feared and rejected by the world, unable to be with those he loves.  It’s an odd experience to love a superhero who always makes you feel like you should give them a hug and tell them it’s going to be alright.  But the Hulk also fascinates me as a metaphorical example of our anger’s devastative potential.  And when I read the Hulk now I wonder…what do I unleash when I get angry? Continue reading