Appearing in "Neverlab"
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Synopsis for "Neverlab"
Aboard a Russian space station, a young boy named Anatoli is sent out into the cybernetic forest on the ship in order to become a man on his 11th birthday. This is a rite of passage for the youths aboard the ship, to traverse this dangerous synthetic forest so they can see a woman they call mother. As the boy traverses through the forest he tries to keep his fears in check when suddenly one of the exterior walls blows open and the Hulk comes crawling into the space station before the sealant activates and closes the hole. The boy thinks it is one of the bears until he starts to speak. The Hulk recognizes the boy's language as Russian and wonders where he is. The boy switches to speaking English and asks if the Hulk is a shaved bear or a fairy. The Hulk tells the kid that he is neither and that he intends to leave as soon as he figures out where he is. The Hulk finds a porthole and realizes he's in space.
Suddenly, the Hulk hears an angry growl, and Anatoli tells him that it is one of the bears. Before the Hulk can get an explanation as to what is going on he is attacked by a cyborg bear. Getting fed up with the cyborg's attacks, the Hulk punches it into a nearby tree which surprisingly consumes all the flesh from the bear. The boy tells the Hulk that they must hurry as the man he calls father has likely heard the screams. Eventually, Anatoli leads the Hulk to the location of his "mother", a woman in a breached portion of the space station who is anchored from the void due to the fact that her leg is caught on a vine.
Later, the Hulk is taken back to where the other boys live and asks what is going on. That's when a teen called the "Old One" arrives and identifies the Hulk as an American and is thankful that he is there. The Old One tells the Hulk that he is aboard a space station called Neverlab, created by the Russians in 1972 during a time they believed that space would be the next battlefield in the Cold War. He explains that the station was constructed using reversed engineered Skrull technology to breed a race of Russian super soldiers on a mobile combat lab that has been cloaked from the surface ever since. He explains how the cyborg bears and cybernetic plants were made. But ultimately, the Berlin Wall fell and the Cold War came to a close and the Russian government had other priorities and Neverlab was soon forgotten. That's when a series of murders started aboard the space station. The scientists tried to leave and the soldiers fed those who tried to the bears. The scientists retaliated by unleashing the plants on them. The Old One concludes his tale by telling him that the only adults who survived on the ship were the people they refer to mother and father.
Back in the forest, Oleg the man the boys call father observes the dead bear that was killed by the Hulk. He knows that his boys couldn't have killed the bear and wonders who did it until he smells the familiar stench of an American and is delighted that he finally has something to kill after all these years. By this time, the Old One has finished telling the Hulk how their father was the greatest of the Super-Soldiers and refuses to leave his post and control the space station since mother had died under mysterious circumstances. The Hulk is interested in knowing more about the escape pods but before he can be told Oleg turns off the artificial gravity aboard the station. The Hulk asks the kids to direct him to the escape pods, but before they go he smashes himself in the head with a fire extinguisher to make himself angry enough to prevent a change back into Bruce Banner.
He leads the boys into the forest and fights off the bears, all the while he wonders what it is that Banner sought here. Suddenly, he is attacked by Oleg who is armed with anti-gravity boots and a massive hammer. As the two fight it out, the Old One manages to restore gravity, but this causes the Hulk and Oleg to strike the floor with sufficient force to break through into the void of space. While Oleg struggles to get back into the space station he begins to freeze in the void, leaving him open to be shattered to bits by the Hulk. With Oleg dead, the children take control of the space station and head toward the planet Mars. The Hulk then leaves in one of the escape pods. Unfortunately, the Hulk cannot figure out a way to control the ship and is forced to allow Banner to take control so they can land safely. As he blacks out, he is unaware that part of one of the technorganic trees is on board the ship with him.
When the Hulk wakes up again, he finds himself back on Earth in a forest with Kraven the Hunter pointing a gun in his face. Kraven is happy to see the Hulk's true face and tells him that the hunt is about to begin.
• Hulk continues to STAY ANGRY in Jason Aaron’s highly anticipated new story arc!
• To do so, the green goliath picks some fights... on the ocean floor and in space!!!
• SEA MONSTERS! RUSSIAN SUPER-SOLDIERS! THE ANGRIEST HULK YET! STAY ANGRY, TRUE BELIEVERS!
- The Hulk sarcastically quips that things always go "so well for him" in space. He is referring specifically to the time he was exiled to the planet Sakaar from Incredible Hulk Vol 2 #91-105.
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