Have you ever been so angry that you steal a plane, fly it into outer space, and become a gladiator on an alien world?
Bruce Banner has, because anger and comic book ridiculousness are kind of his thing.
Finally, this week, we’ve received confirmation of what fans have speculated over for months—that Thor Ragnarok will borrow heavily from Planet Hulk, by having Hulk appear as a gladiator on an alien world named Sakaar.
In case you’re not familiar with the Planet Hulk comic, Hulk crash lands on this planet after being tricked by Reed Richards and Tony Stark, who are tired of their friend going into an uncontrollable rage every time someone cuts in line at the post office. They decide that the easiest way to deal with Hulk is not to attempt to cure him, or reason with him, but to launch him into space while he’s distracted, so that the problem goes away forever.
Spoiler alert: the problem doesn’t go away forever. Once Hulk gets back from Sakaar (which, because Reed Richards is an utter tool, gets blown up when Hulk’s spaceship prison goes nuclear for no reason), we get World War Hulk.
How things are going to play out in Ragnarok remains to be seen. We probably won’t see Hulk leading a band of rebels to overthrow the leaders of the planet, because that would be too much fun. We also won’t see Hulk battle with the Silver Surfer, because again, too much fun (in both cases, Marvel doesn’t own the rights to the properties in question).
We also have to assume that Hulk’s having a pretty good time on Sakaar when Thor arrives, because, after all, in the MCU continuity, Hulk took off into space of his own free will, and not because of Reed Richards’ meddling chicanery.
So, Ragnarok is going to borrow from Planet Hulk without providing a straight adaptation. That’s fair enough, and it worked when the Russo Brothers did the same thing with Civil War. It’s nice that Marvel’s using more comic book source material in their story ideas, because there are a lot of fantastic ideas bubbling around in the printed page that would look fantastic on-screen.
Case in point: World War Hulk. It’d be wonderful if Ragnarok saw Bruce Banner becoming absolutely livid with all of humanity, and deciding to return to Earth for an all-out battle royale in which he crushes Doctor Strange’s hands (yet again), kills his former teenage sidekick, and thrashes Iron Man’s latest Hulkbuster.
Come on, Marvel, give us what we want. You have an unnamed Avengers 4 on your books after Infinity War, give us the brutal Hulk movie we’ve been desperate for all along.
It’d solve the problems of expired contracts if Steve Rogers had to retire because Hulk had literally ripped all of his limbs off! Don’t tell us you don’t want to see that too!