[Warning: The Post Contains Spoilers For Avengers: Infinity War]
Some Incredible Hulk fans felt a little gipped coming out of Avengers: Infinity War because of the fact that the Strongest Avenger only made one fleeting appearance in the film. In fact, there’s been some great debate about why Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner had such a hard time summoning the big, green rage monster after the film’s opening sequence. One of the most prevalent theories is simply that Hulk had never been manhandled quite the way Thanos had manhandled him in that scene and he was simply scared to come out.
Infinity War co-director opened up on the Happy Sad Confused Podcast about the creative decision to have Hulk refuse to enter the fray for the remainder of the movie, and his reasoning is far more emotionally insightful than that. In fact, it seems it has nothing to do with fear at all:
“I think people have interpreted it as Hulk’s scared. I mean, certainly, that’s not a…I don’t know that the Hulk is ever … he’s had his a** kicked before, and he loves a good fight. But I think that it’s really reflective of the journey from Ragnarok.
“These two characters are constantly in conflict with each other over control. And I think that if the Hulk were to say why, it’d be Banner only wants Hulk for fighting. I think he’s had enough of saving Banner’s a**.”
That’s definitely an interesting way to look at it. The Hulk character, as Russo interprets it, doesn’t merely want to be Banner’s emergency escape valve. It wants to be its own vital character that has more to do than simply Smash, and bail Bruce out of jams.
It should be interesting to see how they follow up on this thread in Avengers 4. It’s been said elsewhere that there’s a whole Hulk Arc that was designed to begin with Thor: Ragnarok, continue into Avengers: Infinity War, and then culminate in Avengers 4. So let’s see where they go with this.
What did you think of the portrayal of Bruce Banner and the Incredible Hulk in Infinity War? Personally, I found Bruce lacking and uneven. To me, it felt like they didn’t have much for him to do and were kind of spinning their wheels- which is a shame because I loved where they were going with the character in The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron. I don’t know who- or what- Bruce Banner is anymore.
SOURCE: Happy Sad Confused Podcast