| > HULK MOVIE SPOILER - (but an obvious one)|
> I say this is an obvious spoiler because I think everybody knows it before they enter the theatre, but any way, here's the spoiler:
> The current Hulk movie focuses on Bruce Banner (rather than the Green Guy) as the central protagonist whose story drives the movie.
> The previous Hulk movie did the same.
> The Hulk TV show did the same.
> I think this is why I tend to be less than satisfied by Hulk movies and Hulk TV episodes. You see, Bruce Banner's main goal in life is to stop becoming the Hulk. Trouble is, it's impossible for me to root for Bruce Banner in this, for two reasons:
> 1. I don't want Bruce Banner to stop becoming the Hulk, because then there would be no more Hulk, and I don't want that.
> 2. I know Bruce Banner will never stop becoming the Hulk, because then there would be no more Hulk, and Marvel won't allow that.
> Thus I both want and expect the protagonist to fail in the main goal of his life. This undermines the effectiveness of the storytelling for me personally. Since I'm not rooting for the protagonist, I gradually lose interest in the plot. By the second half of the movie, all I was interested in was seeing the Hulk smash stuff. I wasn't rooting for Bruce Banner so I became bored with Bruce Banner.
Rooting for the protagonist is not the be all and end of all any intimate experience with a narrative.
For me, it was exactly the fact that the movies and other media focused on Banner that had me interested. Hulk's actual comic gets really boring really fast when its just about Hulk. In fact, for a self-admittedly "less cerebral" movie, The Incredible Hulk put forth an interestingly profound thought that made me really stop to think.
When Banner and Betty are driving in the car to see the mysterious Mr. Blue we get to see deep into Banner's motivations toward the Hulk - he wants to destroy it. He doesn't want to learn to live with it, and have tea and crumpets with it, and get along all howdy-do. He wants the monster dead. This is an allegory we should all relate to. We all have a bad side, but we can't just destroy it either. It's a part of who we are.
Banner's drive to eliminate the Hulk is unbalanced - he's not seeking balance with it - and so he is doomed. This has all the makings of a superb tragedy (sadly its a serial so we'll never really see that). What should make this work is that the Hulk should be unpredictable and scary (which they got a bit of in this movie). Stan Lee's original concept had a man transforming at night into something that didn't act like him, believe in the same things, etc. That should be terrifying.
People who live with Multiple Personality Disorder often have a personality that is horrified by the others. That should concern all of us. Its like a stranger taking your wife on a date and all you can do is hear about it. Its like some criminal committing horrible acts WITH YOUR APPEARANCE and making it so YOU have to go on the run. That's MPD.
Look at it from this perspective: You root for the Hulk, but his motivations are just as incompatible as Banner's. The Hulk's main goal in life is to be left alone:
1. I don't want Hulk to be left alone because then there would be no conflict in the stories, and I don't want that.
2. I know that the Hulk will never be left alone because then there would be nothing to tell an interesting story with. "Hulk, outside of his Cave of Solitude is picking flowers and being left alone. The Abomination descends from the sky with an earth-shattering landing. Hulk asks to be left alone. Abomination: "Ok, fine be that way." Abomination walks away." Marvel won't allow that.
| > Did anyone else feel the same way?|
> When Banner and Betty are driving in the car to see
> the mysterious Mr. Blue we get to see deep into
> Banner's motivations toward the Hulk - he wants to
> destroy it. He doesn't want to learn to live with
> it, and have tea and crumpets with it, and get
> along all howdy-do. He wants the monster dead. This
> is an allegory we should all relate to. We all have
> a bad side, but we can't just destroy it either.
> It's a part of who we are.
> Banner's drive to eliminate the Hulk is
> unbalanced--he's not seeking balance with it--and
> so he is doomed. This has all the makings of a
> superb tragedy (sadly its a serial so we'll never
> really see that). What should make this work is
> that the Hulk should be unpredictable and scary
> (which they got a bit of in this movie). Stan
> Lee's original concept had a man transforming at
> night into something that didn't act like him,
> believe in the same things, etc. That should be
I would further note that these things you've said, which are really self-evident, strike at the heart of Marvel's recent effort to "sissify" the comic character; those efforts really do destroy
the character. If the Hulk isn't a dangerous, unpredictable monster, the personaification of rage, fear, frustration, irrationality, and all of those darker things of which he's supposed to be composed, then there's nothing scary about him at all, and no reason whatsoever for Banner to want to destroy him. His "plight" becomes a humorous thing, good for nothing other than being the butt of jokes. Forget "Don't make me angry; you wouldn't like me when I'm angry." This version is more like: "Watch out for that one; when he gets mad, he turns into a 2,000-pound teddy bear." Spoken through barely repressed giggles, of course.