10. Hulk at the Tropicana
Ol' Green Eyes croons Sinatra-style show tunes with all the classiness you would expect.
9. "Nobody Loves the Hulk"
This guitar-jangling rock song is a pop culture artifact from 1966, a single for sale in issues of Marvel Comics. You thought John Lennon's "Imagine" was a tear-jerker?
Try this: "They dropped an H-Bomb on him, but Hulk only became annoyed."
8. Hulk rollercoaster
At Universal theme park's Marvel Superhero Island, don't eat at the Fantastic Four cafe before you ride this gut-wrenching lunch-loser. Some enterprising soul captured the whole ride on video. Obviously, he edited out his ear-busting screams and other unpleasant noises.
7. Hulk 1970s toy commercial
The Hulk song in this toy commercial is still stuck in my head thirty years later.
I'm not sure why Hulk and Spider-Man have "fly away action," but some questions are not meant to have answers.
6. Hulk vs. Thor
Hulk and Thor fought plenty of times in Marvel Comics, because they could.
Decades before Marvel hit it big in movies, this fight is the first-ever live action smackdown between Marvel superheroes, from the Hulk TV show reunion Return of the Incredible Hulk.
It's on DVD now. Buy it. The power of Thor compels you.
5. Incredible Hulk #417
The longest-running Hulk comic book writer is Peter David, who brought humor and heart to the Hulkster (along with plenty of smashing). Hulk throws a bachelor party for sidekick Rick Jones and invites the super-males of Marvel. Hijinks ensue, including Captain America attempting to hire a magician, and instead getting an ecydiast. (You have to look it up. We're not that kind of Web site.)
4. Hulk cartoons
Three Hulk cartoon series appeared in three decades. None of them are on DVD, legally anyway, and that makes me angry. In 1966, the Hulk cartoons appeared to be the result of someone going crazy with the scissors on a pile of comic books, then moving the pieces back and forth. It offered a finger-snapping theme song that rhymed "gamma rays" with "unglamorous." That is called "creative expression."
The 1982 series had an awesome bass drum intro with Hulk growling and breaking things, as Hulk is wont to do. It was notable for Bruce Banner's clothes, which ripped to shreds every time he Hulked out, but returned to buttoned-up shirt, tie, and nicely pleated pants when he returned to Banner form.
The 1996 series had Lou Ferrigno himself as the voice of the Hulk, Luke Perry as Rick Jones and John Rhys-Davies as Thor.
Sci-fi conventioneer Joe Crowe: He brought the wrath of Hulk on himself and somehow survived.
3. Meeting Lou Ferrigno
Lou Ferrigno appeared at Atlanta's DragonCon sci-fi convention in the late 1990s, and I got in the autograph picture line. After seeing dozens of fans talk about the Hulk TV show with him, I decided to talk about something no one else did: his voice acting as Hulk on the 1996 cartoon. Some advice: Don't be the one guy a celebrity remembers.
As the line drew closer, I plotted my message in my head: "It's good the cartoon makers asked you to do the voice of the Hulk."
But what came out of my mouth, to Lou Ferrigno's face, was "I'm glad they asked you, because they must have said, "What could Lou Ferrigno be doing?"
Time stood still. I realized what I said. He realized what I said. He said "Thank you for enjoying the show," and we shook hands. He squeezed my hand, as if to say, "I could rip this arm right off."
This is a great moment in Hulk history because I survived.
2. Superhero party from Saturday Night Live
A classic SNL sketch from the Not Ready For Prime Time Players. Bill Murray is Superman, but the show-stealers are Dan Aykroyd as The Flash and John Belushi as Hulk. Flash introduces Ant-Man with "Hey, Hulk! You'll like this guy! He has the strength of a human!"
1. The 1970s Incredible Hulk TV show
Great TV show? Or the greatest TV show? (Sorry, Manimal
.) From the opening credits to the lonely walk at the end, the whole series David Banner's startling metamorphosis
is undistilled nerd joy.
In four seasons, (all are on DVD. ) Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno taught us many life lessons.
Number one: Don't try to fix your car during a lightning storm.