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Quote1.png He's faking! Somehow he's going to become the Hulk again! He's not cured -- He'll never be cured! He's the Hulk, I tell you THE HULK! Quote2.png
Thaddeus Ross

Appearing in "The New Hulk!"

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  • Anti-Hulk Vehicles

Synopsis for "The New Hulk!"

Now that the Hulk has seemingly been vanquished, the members of the Hulkbusters and their allies have a funeral for their fallen comrade Carolyn Parmentor. Among the mourners are Rick Jones, Bruce Banner, his wife Betty, Doc Samson and a contingent of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents who are on site to ensure that if Banner turns into the Hulk after all, they will have a response. Among the Hulkbustesr, Samuel LaRoquette is the most upset as he had a romantic past with Carolyn before her death. He is furious that she has been buried in the desert given that she loved the ocean. Craig Saunders tries to calm his friend, but LaRoquette still blames both Doc Samson and Bruce Banner for Parmentor's death. Samson becauase he interfered with their hunt for the Hulk, and Banner for not equipping them properly. Although Banner tries to apologize for his involvement, Samson believes that if anyone should be to blame it is LaRoquette himself. This almost causes the two to come to blows, but the rest of the Hulkbusters pull them apart, urging calm and decorum. After the funeral, everyone drives back to Gamma Base. In the car containing Bruce, Betty and Rick they discuss putting everything behind them and moving on. Banner is concerned about Rick after he fell into the same chemical bath that seemingly cure him, as the young man looks sick. Rick assures him that it's probably nothing but a cold. Betty then expresses her impatience with how long it is taking S.H.I.E.L.D. to clear Bruce so that they can resume their marriage and finally take a honeymoon.

Back at Gamma Base, S.H.I.E.L.D. agents are secretly wheeling in a containment unit that contains the energy being known as Zzzax. Elsewhere in the facility, Clay Quartermain meets with Bruce and Betty. Bruce is to be sequestered in a cell at night. Betty is not happy with this, but Bruce fears that if the grey Hulk has returned then so might the nighttime triggers that turned him into the Hulk. That night, while Bruce is asleep he has a nightmare about the green Hulk breaking into his cell, he pleads to the creature to leave him alone. At that very moment, Zzzax causes a power surge in the facility thanks to some faulty insulations and it knocks out the power all over the base, particularly in Banner's cell, and the cameras that monitor it.

Not far from Gamma Base a massive hulking man-monster walks across the highway. When a big rig speeds toward him, this brute easily smashes it, before continuing his way to Gamma Base. Back at base, the power is restored and Clay Quartermain and Doc Samson get access to Banner's room. There he finds that Bruce's clothing is torn, and when he asks Banner what happened, Bruce doesn't remember and figures perhaps he tore his clothing while having a bad dream. When the other begin to doubt this, Bruce points out that nothing else in the room was damaged, which wouldn't be the case if he turned into the Hulk. Quartermain and Samson learn that the power outage was caused by Zzzax, but the creature is still contained. This comes to a relief to Doc Samson, but soon he has a visitor. It turns out to be Polly, a colleague to Northwestern University. She has come to inform him that his tenure there has been terminated. In light of his activities as late, Polly also wants nothing to do with him either and after delivering the news she leaves Gamma Base. Hearing that Doc Samson is now out of a job, Clay Quartermain asks him if he wants to rejoin the staff at Gamma Base, as they could use his expertise. They then go to where a test is being run on Bruce Banner to see if he will still transform into the Hulk. Doc Samson is horrified to see that this "test" is merely a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent slapping him around. However, after the test doesn't trigger a transformation into the Hulk, Bruce explains that he authorized this test.

After he hasn't transformed into the Hulk when losing his temper, Bruce is given the all clear from S.H.I.E.L.D. and this success. Listening from around the corner is Rick Jones who is also happy to hear that Bruce has been apparently cured. However, he himself has not been feeling so great of late. Betty also hears this from an observation room and can hardly bring herself to hope that the nightmare of the Hulk is finally over and the newlyweds can resume their marriage. Her thoughts are interrupted by her father who enters the room. He refuses to believe that Bruce has been cured and warns her that the Hulk will be back to destroy everything. Betty tells her father he is insane, especially after he shot Rick, and this rejection from his daughter caused the disgraced soldier to pause. Their argument is interrupted by S.H.I.E.L.D. agents who ask Ross to return to the lab to continue their tests. With one more evening test to go, Bruce tries to go to sleep hoping that he will not turn into the Hulk and finally win his freedom. Suddenly, a green-skinned monster, not unlike the Hulk starts tearing up Gamma Base.

Fearing that it is Banner, S.H.I.E.L.D. mobilizes a strike unit when the creature leaves the base and starts going on a rampage out in a nearby town. In the commotion, Quartermain also learns that Bruce Banner cannot be found in his cell. Clay goes out into the field in a jeep along with Betty and Doc Samson to search for Banner in human form. They demand explanations, and Banner explains that something attacked his cell. Banner insists that he has not transformed into the Hulk again. They don't believe him at first until suddenly another Hulk, this one skinnier with long hair and a different shade of green. Stating that it has sought out Banner, this new Hulk grabs Bruce and leaps away from the scene, leaving the others to wonder who this new Hulk is.


Continuity Notes

  • Bruce explains how he used to transform into the Hulk at night during his earlier days. This was the status quo in all of the Hulk's transformations between Incredible Hulk #1 and 2. Exposure to the Gamma Ray Projector started more random changes.
  • Samson was working at Northwestern University in Incredible Hulk #314, he took a leave of absence to hunt for the Hulk.
  • Betty mentions how her father tried to break up her wedding with Bruce and also shot Rick Jones. Both of these events happened in Incredible Hulk #319.

Publication Notes

  • This issue features a letters page, Green Mail. Letters are published from Bill Climer, Tony Wolf, Brian Friend, Frank Balkin and Anonymous.

See Also

Links and References


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