Breaking Banner: How Does The ‘The Incredible Hulk’ Work?

Understanding The Multiple Personalities Of The Incredible Hulk
Posted on: May 27th, 2013

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Ed’s note: Fan Fix by Nathan Adler, is one man, and one major fan’s tireless efforts to fix continuity in comics, in the ultimate chronicle of character histories and fan theory into an ingenious bit of streamlining. 

This Fix is written by long time Hulk fan, Deadfast Author and BAD HAVEN founder Mark ‘The Bad Man’ McCann:

 

the hulk - avengers movie

Monstrous Origins

Since his inception The Incredible Hulk has been held up as an analogy for many things; the 60′s counter culture urge to rise up against repression – a reaction to the frustrations of war and the fear of nuclear side effects/ mutations and even a study on anger and justified violence. Stan Lee called the character ‘a golem’ in line with Jewish myth, and recalled Hulk as a perfect fusion of ‘ Robert Louis Stevenson’s Jekyll and Hyde and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein’.

But with so many dissonant personalities emerging over the years of his publication History it’s difficult to give a cohesive history of what exactly ‘Hulk’ really is when compared to his character history as an off-shoot of a gamma bomb experiment gone wrong and the fractured psyche of genius nuclear physicist Bruce Banner.

 

Incredible Hulk toy incarnations

The different incarnations of Hulk from left – Gladiator Hulk, The Meastro, Gamma Irradiated Spider-Man, Joe Fixit, The Professor, House of M Hulk, The Green Scar

 

What we can agree on, is that from his initial appearance, although retconned and retconned again, Hulk emerged from the Gamma Bomb explosion of Banners own design a Gray behemoth who would revert to Banner by sunrise, and Hulk again at sunset. This Hulk was different to the more commonly known version; a rampaging, monosyllabic, child like engine of destruction.

And although the actual reasoning behind this change would be more one of simple editorial practicality (The Grey colouring during his first appearance in Incredible Hulk #1 proved problematic; ‘resulting in different shades of gray, and even green, in the issue’), the effects of the later change to ‘Green’ for the character and ‘childlike’ to the personality would be the catalyst for a long list of personality changes that would result in one of the most seemingly schizophrenic characters in comics.

 

During the Hulk's first ever appearance he was coloured Grey

During the Hulk’s first ever appearance he was coloured Grey

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