Marvel's The Incredible Hulk is a 2008 live-action movie produced by 20th Century Fox and Marvel Studios based around the popular superhero, the Hulk. Taking place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe it is the second film of Phase 1 released on August 1st 2008.
20th Century Fox had originally given the Hulk a film in 2003 which opened to poor critical reviews and lackluster box office profits. In 2005, when Kevin Feige was bargaining with Fox for control over properties to adapt he requested they be allowed to reboot the Hulk franchise in order to complete their theoretical Avengers roster. Seeing the Hulk as a dead end with no immediate plans for reboot, agreed to let Marvel Studios have it. In late 2005 it was later announced a reboot of the popular superhero was in development being a part of the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe, along with Iron Man along with Black Widow and Hawkeye. Darren Aronofsky was announced as Director shortly after.
How the film would be handled was largely disputed, even more so than other Marvel productions at the time. Everything from the casting, tone and even plot was a debate between Marvel, Aronofsky, and Fox. They originally wanted the film to parallel the classic Hulk comic books with David Duchovney starring at the titular role. But when he was unavailable the time filming was scheduled and the writers couldn't find an angle on a modern day Nuclear testing plot line, the idea lost traction. It was then somewhere down the line changed more closer to the more modern Hulk comics and the TV series from the 80s, with Mark Ruffalo cast as the lead.
They did agree however agree that the Abomination would be the movie's main villain. Wanting someone who "actually challenged the Hulk" as the director said. But finding a way to make a Yugoslavian spy into a modern Hulk film proved to be a challenge. Eventually they did figure out a way they were happy with and the film entered production, filming on schedule as intended. Being released in the United States and worldwide on August 1st 2008.
- Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner/The Hulk
- Tim Roth as Emil Blonsky/Abomination
- William Hurt as General Thaddeus "Thunderbolt" Ross
- Liv Tyler as Betty Ross
- Michael Angarano as Rick Jones
- Salma Hayek as Katherine Wayensboro
- Kevin Rankin as Ralph Ryder
- Ty Burrell as Leonard Samson
- Teddy Sears as Benjamin Tibbets
- Kevin Corrigan as Brian Banner (Flashback)
- Anna Silk as Rebecca Banner (Flashback)
- Tim Blake Nelson as Samuel Sterns (Cameo)
The film starts with the inside of someone's body functioning normally before beginning to mutate and turn green. After doing that it shows the main title THE INCREDIBLE HULK while the camera pans out from a young boy's eye on Christmas Eve. His mother, Rebecca, comes up to him and tells him to get to sleep for Christmas tomorrow, revealing the boy's name to be Bruce, as she tucks him into his bed and kisses him goodnight.
Later, Bruce is woken up when he hears a ruckus downstairs. He gets out of bed and sneaks through the staircase only to see his father, Brian, noticeably drunk, yelling at Rebecca that he didn’t get anything for Christmas so he doesn’t have to spend a penny more on that "monster" than he has to. Rebecca tries to convince him that Bruce is still his son and to go back out and get at least one gift for him to which Brian responds by violently slapping her across the face. Bruce then runs down the stairs and tries to help his mother but Brian pushes him away and warns him to "stay out of this, you little freak!" while the camera then shows Bruce's face as he witnesses his father brutally beating her to death.
In the present, Bruce is revealed to now be an adult sitting in therapy with his psychologist, Doctor Leonard Samson. Telling him how it's the ten year anniversary since his father died in prison, that he cried the day he found out, after learning his father abused him too. He grew up thinking that all the Banner men all had the "monster gene" in them, which is why he hated him so much. His Dad wasn't evil, he just didn't know any better. Samson insists that cycle can be broken, but to do that they have to dive deeper into that trauma, forgiving his father is a good first step, but it’s still going to be a long road.
Bruce looks at the clock and realizes the session is over, thanks Samson for seeing him on such short notice, claiming he really needed it today, and then leaves to return to work at Culver University, where he is shown to be a Professor of Nuclear Physics. He begins teaching one of his lectures on the electromagnetic light spectrum, while a student named Rick Jones sits in the back of the classroom goofing off with other students, not paying attention. As Bruce continues teaching he eventually notices a Military General standing outside the door. Once the class ends, Bruce politely greets General "Thunderbolt" Ross but he insists just Thaddeus is fine before asking if they can talk in his office.
There, the General tells Bruce that on behalf of the United States military he would like to formally invite him to join the Operation Fallout a government initiative started during the Cold War that's moving forward at Culver University involving the study and implementation of a radiation exposure therapy for soldiers operating in regions under active nuclear threat. General Ross adds on that his daughter, Bruce's girlfriend, recommended him as part of their elite team. He's one of the University's primary experts on Radiophysics, and wants to think his presence would benefit the project. Bruce is honored by the offer and instantly accepts it. General Ross then shows Bruce to the lab where they come across Betty working. She greets them and gently kisses Bruce on the cheek, which General Ross seems openly annoyed with, eventually then introducing him to the other scientists on the project.
Katherine Waynesboro, Professor of Cellular Biology, says nothing, not even looking up from her work. Next is Emil Blonsky, Molecular Biology transfer from Cambridge. He shakes hands with Bruce saying that he looks forward to working on the project, and hopes to eventually use it to gain a further understanding of the effects Gamma Radiation has on the human genome. Bruce timidly says that he agrees, overwhelmed by Blonsky's cool overconfidence. The third scientist then enters the compound named Ralph Ryder escorted by Private Benjamin Tibbets. Who quickly says "Hi" to Bruce before making casual small talk with Betty. Bruce seems caught off guard by this but doesn't react and instead introduces himself to Ryder instead.
Later that night, Bruce and Betty are at home getting ready for bed until he asks her if she persuaded her father to hire him for the project. Betty insists that all she did was explain to him that he's the top of his field and a tenured professor at an Ivy League school who he'd be crazy not to look into, and wonders why he asks. Bruce says how it just doesn't seem like he likes him very much, but Betty replies that he's like that with everyone. Bruce claims he doesn't notice it and Betty replies saying she's known him a lot longer. He then concedes and thanks her for the good word then.
It then does a timeskip showing Bruce and his fellow scientists continuing to work on Operation Fallout and how to crack radiation resistance. One day while Bruce is walking through Culver University, Rick Jones is carelessly walking through the campus while texting on his phone until he’s almost hit by a speeding security van, but Bruce pushes him out of the way. As they get up Rick realizes Bruce just saved his life and thanks him profusely, afterwards recognizing him as his Professor. Bruce though timidly reminds him he’s been taking his class all semester and Rick stutters before insisting of course he knows that. He then stutters for a moment before saying that he was just heading to his dorm to work on next class's homework assignment, which Bruce unconvincingly takes his word for.
He then goes to the lab where Operation Fallout has finished synthesizing a vaccine that’s designed to make the immune system absorb and dispose of any excess radiation it’s been infected with. The vaccine is injected into a mouse who's then placed onto a Gamma Ray Projector where it's exposed to a lethal amount of Gamma Radiation, which kills it, much to everyone’s disappointment. Katherine Waynesboro begins to investigate what went wrong while Emil Blonsky and Ralph Ryder quietly go to the corner. Ralph asks how long they need to "keep the act up" and Emil tells him only after they have a working hypothesis. They can't go back to the A.I.M. empty handed, not after they used all their connections to get onto this project. Ralph points out it's been six months and they're not getting anywhere but Blonsky responds that he sees potential with this group and thinks they’ll get what they’re looking for in less than a year if they stick with it.
More time passes as Operation Fallout continues to work on the vaccine, eventually finding promising results. Betty is then seen walking on campus to the lab as General Ross is waiting alongside Private Tibbets. He tells him to go inside and help set up as Ross walks over to his daughter and they discuss the experiment. Betty says how Bruce's research saved the whole project, adding that she hopes he proposes soon. The General though is irritated by her sentiment and openly expresses disapproval of her relationship with Bruce. Claiming their family comes from a military background and Bruce doesn't deserve to be a part of that. Betty disagrees with her father and they argue over it until he brings up that Private Tibbets seems to have a little "crush" on her which might be worth giving a try.
The two of them then go inside and everyone starts to prepare for more testing. Betty lets her father's words get to her and decides to listen to his advice, approaching Benjamin Tibbets and getting to know him, doing nothing to stop his flirtatious advances. Bruce eventually notices and looks upon it with jealousy, but before he can say anything General Ross comes up to him and says how Betty is moving on, that maybe they weren't meant to be after all. Bruce says how that isn't true, they love each other, but Ross points out how he won't be able to provide for her like a Private could, and Betty can do so much better, if Bruce cares, he should let her.
Katherine Waynesboro then starts setting up the next animal test subject until Bruce insists to her that he wants to test it on himself. She says how they're still weeks away from human trials but Bruce argues that a little bravery never hurt anyone, the animals have all been responding well to the treatment, they can just give him a low dosage, it'll be fine. Katherine decides to go along with it, telling Emil Blonsky and Ralph Ryder to get the Gamma Ray Projector ready.
Bruce is then injected with the vaccine before stepping into the chamber which Betty notices, now ignoring Private Tibbets while she asks Bruce what he's doing. He insists that the vaccine works and he’s going to prove it, strapping himself onto the Projector while inside the control room Blonsky and Ryder turn on the Gamma Radiation. Everyone observes how Bruce’s body appears to be completely resistant to the noxious effects of the radiation which Katherine and Betty show relief at as Bruce gives them a thumbs up.
In the control room again, Ryder is excited too, claiming that they’ve figured it out. Blonsky though is unimpressed, insisting that they need to know how strong it is, turning the radiation up even higher. After that Bruce starts to suddenly become affected and begins having a seizure before suffering an intrusive memory from his past. In the memory, Bruce is a child in the Courthouse where he’s called up to the stand in order to testify against Brian Banner. The lawyer asks him what happened on Christmas Eve and despite harsh glares from his father, Bruce tells him the truth. The Judge sentences Brian to life in prison and as he's being taken away starts struggling with security trying to go after Bruce, screaming how he's going to kill him while calling his son a monster again. Despite Bruce appearing to be emotionally indifferent to all of his father’s threats, the camera pans down to his hand which he starts clenching into a fist.
In the present, everyone is terrified at what's going on until General Ross barges into the control room before demanding Blonsky and Ryder to shut it off. They do as told but Bruce doesn't stop reacting to the radiation until suddenly he opens his eyes, revealing them now to be lime colored, as he starts transforming into an eight foot tall green skinned monster. The transformed Bruce goes on a rampage through the lab as Private Tibbets asks what the hell happened to "Banner" and Bruce replies that there's no Banner, only Hulk crushing him and shattering the entire lab. The Hulk breaks out of the building and begins getting pursued by campus security who try to shoot him but their bullets do nothing, with the Hulk responding by pounding them too. Hulk then continues smashing through all of Culver University, fighting anyone or anything that gets in his way, only to eventually stop after he starts to calm down and, surprisingly, reverts back into his normal human form as Bruce Banner. Disoriented and confused, he gets up before being tased in the back by Emil Blonsky, who finally puts him down.
Bruce wakes up in the hospital where Leonard Samson is standing over him, surprised that he actually woke up at all, claiming that after his "big incident" they didn't think he would. Samson then goes to get the nurse and Bruce asks where Betty is. After no one answers him he gets out of bed and tries to find her when he finally gets to her room only to see she's in a coma. As he looks over her about to cry, General Ross, now with a broken arm, pins Bruce to the wall telling him that he did this! Bruce says he doesn't know what's going on and Ross explains that after he got bathed in Gamma Rays he turned into some kind of monster, giant, green, called itself the Hulk. It killed fifteen people including Private Tibbets, and then did this to Betty. Bruce sheepishly says that he's sorry but Ross insists that so help him God he will make sure he pays for what he did. Leonard Samson afterwards pulls Ross off and claims nobody knows for sure what happened at the University but right now Bruce needs to rest.
At Culver University, Rick Jones makes his way through a crowd of students only to see the destroyed property around the Biology Department. Agents revealed to be working for S.H.I.E.L.D. tell him to keep moving, that there's nothing to see here. Rick asks what happened to Bruce Banner and an Agent confirms that he's at Willowsdale Memorial Hospital. Behind the crowd Emil Blonsky and Ralph Ryder are quietly watching the S.H.I.E.L.D. Investigation unfold. Ryder speculates that S.H.I.E.L.D. is going to shut down Operation Fallout after what happened and Blonsky insists they can't let that happen, not when things are just getting interesting. Ryder asks how they're going to keep interest alive outside of A.I.M. then and Blonsky reminds him radiation resistance might be a dead end, but there's a new selling point now.
At the hospital again, Bruce is trying to rest until Rick Jones walks in and asks what happened. Bruce explains that he thought they thought the vaccine was ready, so he tested it on himself, but it turned him into some sort of monster, he tore the university apart, and put the love of his life in a coma. Once he gets out of here it's only a matter of time before the Military locks him up and throws away the key. Rick quickly looks around and says how Bruce saved his life that day on the Quad, now it's time for him to save his, they're busting out of here, he has a car outside they can use to get away. Bruce says he isn't going to let him do that, Rick will just get in trouble too but Jones insists that his life is already over, his family won't talk to him anymore, he's failing his classes and is probably going to be kicked out of school soon anyway, this is his choice.
Bruce asks what if he gets caught too and Rick explains he's been drag racing since he was sixteen years old, this is cake. Before Bruce can reply it cuts to Leonard Samson going to check on him in his room only to see that he's gone. Samson starts to call for security as the camera pans to the parking lot outside showing Bruce to be with Rick in his car as they drive away.
Later, General Ross is arguing with the police who claim they're searching the entire block but there's no sign of Bruce anywhere. He tells them to keep looking and walks off to take a breath until being approached by Emil Blonsky. He asks how the search is going and Ross explains if Banner's not found in the next twenty four hours then the Department of Homeland Security can take over, but until then all they can do is sit on their asses and wait. Blonsky responds that they're not going to be able to find him either, no one could, except them. Ross asks what he means and Emil insists they know Bruce and how he thinks, with a few good men and a couple million dollars, they could track him down, predict his movements, weed him out. The General admires their shared ambitions and admits he wants to put Bruce away for what he did to his daughter, afterwards telling Blonsky he has connections at the Pentagon and might be able to pull some strings.
It then does a montage of the next couple of weeks, where Bruce and Rick each take turns sleeping in the trunk while driving across the country. Eventually, Bruce goes up front to ask where they are and Rick tells him northern Minnesota, ten minutes from Canada. Bruce rubs his face to wake up until Rick says that a buddy of his hooked them up with some fake IDs and recommends Bruce memorize his before they get to the border. The two of them then start to slow down when they reach the Canadian frontier, being stopped by border patrol for vehicle inspection.
Rick cooperates and the border patrol officers question Bruce about his business in Canada. They ask his name and Bruce tells them the fake alias Rick gave him, Stanley Lieber, but to his folly they search it and manage to find the real Stanley Lieber who looks nothing like him. Bruce humorously tries to explain that he gained some weight... and dyed his hair. Border patrol ask Bruce why he's lying about his name and even asks Rick if this man is holding him against his will. Despite Jones insisting not the border patrol officers claim identity theft is a felony offense and try to take them in. Bruce resists arrest and the officers start to force him down physically, causing Bruce to transform into the Hulk again.
Hulk then takes out all the border patrol officers and almost attacks Rick Jones too before running off through the forest and across the border. Rick follows the trail of destruction behind in his car until it's late at night and he finds Bruce no longer transformed, kneeled down and weeping. Rick comes out and tries to comfort him but Bruce says not to touch him, he's a monster. Rick though assures him that he's not, and speculates that he transforms when he's angry, which just means he needs to go somewhere peaceful, remote, further up north.
Meanwhile, at the Pentagon, General Ross is showing everyone a newspaper clipping of a "Green Sasquatch" spotted in Ontario. He says that Bruce Banner has now crossed the border and is an active international threat which Homeland Security and the Canadian Mounted Guard have been struggling to contain, he wants to help. Ross then gives his pitch for Project Greenskin an initiative made up of scientists and experts on Gamma Radiation who will put their knowledge together to find and bring Banner to justice. Ross then calls up all the scientists hired for Project Greenskin which happen to include Emil Blonsky and Ralph Ryder, the General then commenting Katherine Waynesboro had respectfully declined to be part of the team, but that he was able to get his daughter to take her place, as it shows a now recovered Betty join the scientists too. She comments that instead of punishing Bruce Banner for his alleged crimes, she wants to find a cure for his condition. Ross is noticeably annoyed by her motivations, but doesn't say anything.
Months pass by as Bruce and Rick continue to live as fugitives traveling through Canada while at the same time, Project Greenskin is continuing to work tirelessly in order to track their movements. Emil Blonsky and Ralph Ryder are designing special sonic cannons to physically restrain Bruce when he's transformed. In the middle of their research Ralph begins reminiscing over how much time they've spent designing these specs, time that they could've spent with their own experiments at A.I.M. Blonsky casually points out that they'll resume their own work once they have Banner fully contained but Ryder demands to know why he's worth any of this at all. Blonsky, now giving his full attention, explains that what happened to Bruce is more than just some accident, it's transformation, evolution in action. Man bypassing his limitations to become something... better, except it was wasted on someone who doesn't deserve it. They have a moral obligation to right that wrong, to make sure history is only made by those who earn it. That's why he joined A.I.M. in the first place, to do science the right way, regardless of how much arbitrary utility the elites can squeeze of it, afterwards asking Ralph if he agrees, only to respond with timid submission.
Meanwhile, unlike the rest of her colleagues, Betty is working on her own project, a cure. General Ross eventually visits his daughter and after exchanging one sided formalities, informs her that on account of budget cuts her funding for the antidote is going to be allocated to weapon's development instead. Betty angrily tells her father how it's insane that he's prioritizing hunting Bruce down instead of helping him, he's not a criminal, just the victim of a science experiment gone wrong. Ross says that they can focus on curing him once he's captured but Betty responds that curing him first would be just as effective. General Ross clarifies that his job is to protect his country, and if the best way to do that is to take down Bruce Banner kicking and streaming, that's the way it has to be, and maybe that's not fair, but life isn't.
In Canada, Bruce and Rick settle down in Yellowknife where they stop at a bar to rest. Rick tells Bruce to stay calm and order a beer but he asks if that's a good idea, not knowing what the Hulk could be like when he's drunk. Rick insists it will relax him, which should prevent another incident. They both then sit down and order whatever is on tap, making small talk to each other while watching a Hockey game on the TV.
Bruce begins to start having a good time until accidentally knocking over someone else's drink. Bruce tries to apologize but he only seems to get more upset. Bruce then warns him not to get him angry, "you wouldn't like me when I'm angry". He doesn't take the threat seriously though and pours the rest of his beer over Bruce's head, asking him what he's gonna do about it. Rick tries to calm Bruce down before he snaps and when that doesn't seem to work, Bruce responds by hastily storming out the door to prevent anything from happening. He walks over to Rick's car and takes a gun out of the dashboard before leaving town to go into the wilderness. Once he gets out far enough Bruce then points it towards the side of head and shoots himself, collapsing to the ground as his eyes turn green and he transforms into the Hulk, spitting the bullet out. At the Pentagon, Project Greenskin is instantly alerted that the Hulk has been spotted in the Northwest Territories and General Ross calls in an entire platoon of tanks and to have everything else on standby.
The Hulk begins ripping apart Yellowknife and terrorizing the population until the Military along with General Ross show up and shoot at him using their tanks, bashing Hulk into a nearby building. They then continue to shoot everything they have at him which only serves to make the Hulk more angry, and therefore stronger. As the Hulk continues to attack and becomes more and more unstoppable Ross calls Blonsky and Ryder's sonic cannons, which are so powerful they subdue the Hulk enough that he eventually calms down and turns back into Bruce Banner. Meanwhile, Rick Jones attempts to skip town in the chaos but is spotted and arrested by the Military, eventually taken into the same truck Bruce is in where they're both deported back to the United States.
In Washington DC, Bruce and Rick are both detained and prevented from seeing anyone before being escorted to a Military trial. Even though Betty tries to defend Bruce, General Ross along with Emil Blonsky and Ralph Ryder all testify against him, claiming he had full control as the Hulk and needs to be punished for it accordingly. Fortunately, Leonard Samson is then called up to the stand and demonstrates through his research that the Hulk is an involuntary reaction to stress that Bruce exhibits no sign of control over after he transforms, his testimony complicating the case enough for everything to be delayed further. Afterwards, Bruce thanks his old therapist for helping him and Samson responds that it's becoming a highlight of his career, Bruce's case is one of a kind. Betty then sees Bruce and rushes over to hug him, relieved that they're allowing visitors to see him. Bruce begins to tightly hug her back and afterwards tells Betty that he'll be able to see his cousin too, she can help.
In their laboratory at the Pentagon, Blonsky assures Ryder that this is just a temporary setback, he'll never win the trial. Ryder puts his foot down and firmly insists he can't know that, and he's done waiting, they're leaving tonight. Blonsky mutters that if he leaves he's not coming with him to which Ralph reminds him you don't quit A.I.M. you get let go. Ralph then grabs Blonsky by the shoulder but before he can do anything Emil pulls out a pocket knife and stabs him in the chest, causing Ryder to instantly bleed out as Blonsky realizes what he did and quickly cleans the knife before leaving in a hurry.
At the same time, General Ross is in his office until Betty storms in and asks him why he's filing an objection against Samson's testimony. The General responds that it was a decision by the United States Military's legal team dictated by dozens of lawyers and personnel, not just him. Betty rolls her eyes and mutters he won't even tell her the truth, afterwards though insisting the Judge will never sustain this, Samson clearly has no "conflict of interest" like they're claiming. Ross then asks her if that really matters, they have Bruce where they want him, and enough resources to keep dragging this out for years on end until they find an angle, or she just gives up.
Before Betty can respond a loud security alarm starts blaring and Ross goes to see what's going on, Betty following not far behind. Ross is then escorted to the laboratory where he's shown Ryder's corpse, the soldiers explaining that the cameras picked up him and Blonsky arguing until it got violent, then he snuck off the premises without anyone noticing. Ross demands to know why he would do this and the soldiers claim they have an idea, walking over to Ryder and Blonsky's desks where they pull out belongings linking them to A.I.M. Theorizing they might've been spies, sent here to gain intel on Operation Fallout at Culver. Betty then speaks up asking what A.I.M. is and Ross explains it stands for Advanced Idea Mechanics they're a bunch of crackpots obsessed with pushing the limits of science without regulation, ethical or otherwise. Ross then begins barking orders at his soldiers to find and detain Blonsky while Betty slips off again.
In the Pentagon's underground prison complex Bruce and Rick are in adjacent cells separated from each other by a concrete wall. Rick asks him if he really can't remember anything when he transforms and Bruce explains it's a little more complicated than he lets on. It's not that he's unconscious but more like a dream, he sees fragments and images, but never the whole picture. Rick points out if he remembers then it must still be him inside, on some level. Before Bruce can answer, all the cameras suddenly turn off as Betty enters through his cell and tells him that they're getting out of here.
Bruce slows her down claiming this could sabotage their whole case but Betty yells at him it already is, even if they win this trial there'll just be another one, and another one after that, her father is never going to leave him alone. She's taking him to Grayburn College in Philadelphia, her and Katherine Waynesboro have been collaborating there to come up with a cure using the same Gamma Radiation treatment that turned him in the first place. Bruce though talks back asking even if this cure works what are they gonna do afterwards, wondering if she even has a plan. Betty just insists they'll figure it out, all she knows is that they're never going to get another chance if they don't leave now. Rick in his cell then starts to speak up asking what's going on and Bruce tells Betty that Rick has to come with them too.
At Grayburn College, Katherine Waynesboro is shown to be trying to replicate the vaccine as well as induce the exact same Gamma Radiation levels that Bruce was exposed to. In the middle of research, she begins to see someone's shadow coming into the room. She calls out for Betty, thinking it's her, only to see a deranged Emil Blonsky barge in instead. He pulls out his knife and holds it to her throat, confessing that he's been following her work these last few months and knows she's still doing experiment with Gamma Radiation, that he wants her recreate what happened that day at Culver on him. Waynesboro becomes confused by his request and wonders why he would want to do that. Blonsky explains that he always knew he could be the smartest guy in the room, but then he saw what a little radiation could do to someone, someone like Bruce Banner, and he knew he wanted more. Katherine responds that the effects of the Gamma Radiation are still unpredictable, what might've worked for Bruce could turn him into an abomination! Blonsky though ignores Katherine's warning and sternly demands she get to work.
She does as instructed and injects him with the vaccine before setting up the Gamma Ray Projector, turning it up to the highest setting. As Blonsky gets exposed he starts to viciously transform, his eyes turning teal as he grows massively in size while his skin turns hazel and his hair falls out, with bones protruding from his arms, legs and backside. He then accidentally thrusts Katherine onto the floor with his new found strength before smashing through the wall and into the city. Betty, meanwhile, is shown across town yelling at traffic while driving through the streets of Philadelphia with Bruce and Rick. She starts to get a phone call and picks up only to hear a desperate Katherine on the other end of the line telling Betty that Blonsky found her and used Gamma Radiation to turn himself into a monster, they have to get out of the city now! Bruce overhears and asks what's going on with Blonsky until the three of them start to notice cars flying in the distance.
They all get out of the car and start running as the Abomination destroys everything in his path, eventually spotting Bruce in the crowd of pedestrians, muttering "Hulk!" as he snarls. The Abomination then runs over to Bruce and brutally smashes him into the pavement as Betty screams and Rick watches in anguish. Suddenly, the Hulk's fist emerges from the rubble and manages to punch the Abomination back a dozen meters before digging himself out and yelling "Hulk, Smash!" as they both run at each other and tear Philadelphia apart, Rick taking Betty and any nearby civilians to safety on the sidewalk while the two behemoths continue to clash. After a long, intense, and drawn-out battle the Hulk finally has the upper-hand on Abomination, but just before he can kill him Hulk sees a reflection of himself in a broken mirror and then afterwards turns his gaze to Abomination. Contemplating his decision he lets out a loud roar and decides to spare the Abomination, jumping to cover with Rick and Betty before slowly transforming back to Bruce Banner.
The Military eventually makes it to Philadelphia and takes the Abomination away. General Ross asks about the Hulk and his daughter but the soldiers claim they're nowhere to be found. Ironically, it then shows Bruce at Grayburn College with Betty and Rick where Katherine Waynesboro performs tests on him using the Gamma Ray Projector. After observing the results Katherine shares the disappointing news that these mutations are hardwired into Bruce's genetics, and doesn't know where to begin with reversing them. Betty starts arguing with her on alternative angles they could approach treating him until Rick notices Bruce is gone, with only a note left over.
They all read over the contents of the note as Bruce does a voice over of it to the audience, claiming he knows what they're all thinking right now and that he's sorry for what he's about to do, but they deserve to live normal lives, and knows that's going to be impossible as long as he or the Hulk are around. He's been on his own since he was eighteen, never really fit in anywhere, this is just gonna be another phase of life for him, except now he has a new challenge to overcome, one that he has to do alone. Because even if it might seem impossible now, he will find a way to beat this, and when he does, he will come back. As the message was being read it shows Bruce now in Brazil getting off of a pickup truck he hitchhiked with. After they drive away he takes a deep breath and walks forward, the camera panning into his eye.
Teasing The Incredible Hulk 2
A janitor is seen mopping the floor after hours while a wall-mounted Television plays in the background. On it, WHiH News is doing a report on the Hulk while the Janitor turns around to begin watching, the light from the Television revealing him to have the name tag Samuel Sterns on his uniform.
- Culver University, the fictitious school Bruce Banner is a Professor at, is based on the Culver Institute where David Banner worked in the 1979 Bill Bixby The Incredible Hulk TV show.
- Operation Fallout is inspired from the Hulk's Ultimate Comics origin where the Military used him to try and recreate Captain America's Super Soldier Serum, as opposed to having him directly create a Gamma Bomb.
- Emil Blonsky was originally, in the comics, a Yugoslavian spy who sabotaged the experiment that turned Bruce Banner into the Hulk. Though he still contributes to the latter, he is instead given a more modern interpretation as a mole for A.I.M. instead.
- Benjamin Tibbets replaces Glenn Talbot in most adaptations as Bruce Banner's romantic rival for Betty's affections. In the comics, Tibbets has no connection to Betty and instead becomes a supervillain called Flux.
- Rick Jones, in the comics, was saved by Bruce Banner from a Gamma Bomb explosion, not a speeding security van.
- S.H.I.E.L.D. the organization A.I.M. tries to avoid, is the same one headed by Director Nick Fury who appeared in the end-credits of Iron Man.
- Bruce telling Betty he's going to call his cousin for legal help is an in-universe reference to Jennifer Walters, a lawyer and Bruce's paternal cousin whom he was always close with.
- Samuel Sterns, the janitor who's seen in the end credits scene, is the civilian identity for one of the Hulk's greatest enemies called The Leader.