Appearing in "The Mountain"
- Fantastic Four (Cameo)
- Major Reeves
- Brian Banner (Only in flashback)
Races and Species:
- Cryogenic inducer prototype (Only in flashback)
Synopsis for "The Mountain"
Following his battle with Ravage, the Hulk has fled to the snowy mountains of Colorado. There he lets his rage soar because he just wants to be left alone. Not far away, in a secluded cabin, are Mitch Bennett and his son Danny. When Danny hears the echoes of the Hulk's screams, the boy becomes scared and wishes his mother was there. Mitch assures his son that they won't be staying here much longer as they plan on going traveling. However, things are not going to go as planned, as the Hulk's rage causes an avalanche. Not only does the Hulk get caught up in the landslide of snow, but it also buries the Bennett cabin. Mitch grabs jackets for himself and his son and tries they try to escape out the front door, only to find that they have been snowed in.
Meanwhile, at Gamma Base, General Ross is overseeing the containment of Ravage, a new gamma-mutate that they have cryogenically frozen. With him is his daughter Betty, who tries to convince her father to give up his hunt for the Hulk, but he can't, even though the Hulk recently saved his life. When Betty asks where her husband is, he tells her that he has been showing Major Reeves, a representative from the Pentagon, around the Gamma Base facility. Major Reeves is unimpressed with Gamma Base's inability to permanently contain the Hulk and will make sure his report to the Pentagon will reflect this. Major Talbot tries to explain to him what it is like to face the Hulk, but Reeves has a solution for them: Wait until the Hulk reverts back into Bruce Banner and shoot him in the head.
Back in Colorado, Mitch and his son Danny begin to panic as the cabin may buckle under the weight of the snow and crush them alive. Suddenly, Bruce Banner bursts out of the snow. They quickly get him some clothes and some food to eat. Hiding his true identity from the Bennetts, Bruce tells him he was just passing through the area when he got caught in the avalanche. He also learns that Mitch and his son were about to leave for California to start a new life somewhere else. With the cabin continuing to strain under the weight of the snow, Danny becomes scared again. Watching Mitch comfort his son make Bruce think about how differently his family life was with his abusive father, Brian Banner. Needing to get out before the snow crushes them, Bennett looks where they pulled Bruce out of the snow and he is surprised to see that Banner managed to tunnel down to their cabin almost from the top of the snow. They begin digging their way out. After some tense moment,s Bennett manages to break through to the surface. When he gets out and reaches for his son, Danny panics and stumbles, sending both him and Bruce tumbling back down into the cabin.
Bennett then notices that emergency crews are arriving on the scene and wonders if his plan is ruined. Still, with the life of his son on the life he goes to the crew to get their help. Out of sight, the Hulk bursts out of the snow with Danny in his arms. Reverting back into Bruce Banner, he carries the boy back around and turns him over to Bennett. With Danny safe, the officers arrest Bennett. Bruce learns that Bennett had lost custody of his son after divorcing his wife and tried to flee the state with him. This comes to a surprise to Bruce, but when one of the officers makes mention that there is no way you can tell what a father will do to his son, it gets Bruce thinking about his father again. Back at Gamma Base, Glenn Talbot reports back to General Ross about his meeting with Major Reeves. With this additional pressure, the General says he may have gotten just what they need to stop the Hulk once and for all. He leads Glenn into a meeting room where the Fantastic Four are waiting.
- This series is stated as happening "six years ago", this measurement of time passed in the Modern Age between stories published in 1998 and roughly around Incredible Hulk #209 per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616. Stories published in 1998 fall under "Year Ten" of the modern age. Incredible Hulk #209 was published in 1977 which falls under "Year Four" of the modern age. As such the measurement of time here is accurate. When the Timescale pushes forward in November 2017, these stories will have taken place 11 years prior to present day publications.
- This story takes place during a period of time that Betty Ross was married to Glenn Talbot. The couple got married in Incredible Hulk #158. From the perspective of this story, the pair have been married for roughly a year. After a troubled marriage, the couple get divorced in Incredible Hulk #238 roughly a year after this story based on the Sliding Timescale.
- Bruce thinks about his abusive childhood, this was first explored in Incredible Hulk #312.
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