Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) is the only Avenger of the original six who didn’t get a satisfying arc in Endgame. Some of the best Hulk action happened off-screen. Like Bruce Banner’s transformation into Smart Hulk. Or Hulk becoming a superhero that kids love. Or Bruce and Nat (Scarlett Johansson) getting some sort of closure after the relationship they almost had. And while Professor Hulk was a crucial player in the plot to save the day, it still felt like Marvel could do more with the character.
As soon as Marvel announced She-Hulk, we expected a Hulk cameo. It might be a TV show, but Marvel isn’t making a Hulk movie any time soon. So, having Hulk in She-Hulk might be the next best thing. Fast-forward to the present day, and we have a few exciting developments, including an explanation for a particular post-credits scene featuring Hulk. Before we move forward, you should know that big spoilers follow below.
Marvel’s big Hulk surprise
Hulk might be a Marvel character, but the studio doesn’t hold the movie rights for the character. Or at least, it couldn’t make any standalone Hulk films, which is why we never got a Ruffalo solo Hulk project. That might change in the future, as a rumor says there’s a World War Hulk movie project in development.
But Marvel’s big Hulk surprise came in a different form earlier this year. Ruffalo appeared in a mind-blowing post-credits scene at the end of Shang-Chi. What’s perplexing about the scene is that Smart Hulk was gone. He’s Bruce Banner again, although his hand is still injured from the snap.
It was such a shocking development that audiences might fail to grasp the real meaning of the credits scene. Hulk’s presence aside, that credit scene tells us that the Avengers are very much active. Seeing Wong (Benedict Wong) on a video call with Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) and Bruce Banner indicates that the Avengers aren’t done protecting the planet. The big teaser’s implication here is that an Avengers 5 is in the making.
Professor Hulk’s “downgrade” to Bruce Banner is just a great bonus mystery that has to be explained. And a leak might give us the answer.
How Bruce Banner gets to be Bruce Banner again
The 10-episode She-Hulk TV show starring Tatiana Maslany as Jennifer Walters/She-Hulk should premiere next year. We don’t have a release date for it or a trailer. The TV show will feature another great cameo in addition to Ruffalo. That’s Tim Roth’s Abomination. Coincidentally, we last saw Abomination in Shang-Chi, where he seemed to be on friendly terms with Wong.
A brand new leak tells us that it’s in She-Hulk that Smart Hulk will want to revert to Bruce Banner.
The mods explained in a spoilers roundup that a person familiar with Marvel Studios’ MCU Phase 4 plans disclosed various details about unreleased projects. She-Hulk happens to be one of them. And the first thing the leaker mentioned about the series is that Smart Hulk will have to return to his human form to give a blood transfusion to Jennifer:
Professor Hulk reverts to human form to give blood transfusion to Jennifer (This was said months before the Shang-Chi credit scene was revealed)
The leaker says that Banner will struggle to transform to Hulk again, and Jennifer will help out with that. This seems to be an indication that Ruffalo will have a more significant role in the TV show than cameos:
Bruce and Jennifer fight in Hulk form as training, then get drinks at a bar. Bruce uses Hulk clap after Jennifer sucker punches him (this scene may have been cut)
The other Hulks
The leaker also said that Roth has a major role. But the real villain is Titania, with Jameela Jamil supposedly playing her. William Hurt and Jon Bass are also in the series. And, interestingly, Charlie Cox appears as Daredevil, which will be different from the Netflix version.
Cox will cameo in Spider-Man: No Way Home, several leaks said. Marvel reportedly wants to give Daredevil a soft reboot, which means the Netflix events aren’t canon, but the characters will be similar.
Finally, the leaker also indicated that four other actors will do motion capture, not including Hulks, Abomination, and Titania. The mods say this matches up with reports that the Wrecking Crew are involved in She-Hulk.
These are rumors, however, so treat them accordingly. The leaker also said that Kevin Feige “absolutely hates leaks,” so Marvel can change plans if spoilers are leaked early enough. If the spoilers are accurate, then the events in She-Hulk will take place between Endgame and Shang-Chi. And we’ll get to see Smart Hulk returning to Banner form this time around.