The Marvel Cinematic Universe created a unique and, as it turns out, perfect time jump between Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. Due to the Covid pandemic, Marvel Studios has been playing catch-up after a year of delays, and that means that by the time next summer’s The Marvels arrives, the timeline will have pretty much synced up with the real world again in 2023. However, although the MCU has told some of the stories that occurred during the 5-year Blip, including the upcoming Secret Invasion series, there are plenty of other stories that could be told and Mark Ruffalo would love to tell a Bruce Banner/Hulk story.
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Ruffalo recently reprised his MCU role in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, playing both Bruce Banner and Smart Hulk. The latter of these was a creation that Banner developed during the Blip, combining both of his personalities into one supreme personality with Banner’s intellect and mentality and Hulk’s strength. However, even though She-Hulk has touched a little on Banner’s time during the Blip, Ruffalo has a pitch for his own Hulk story based during those missing years. While speaking to EW, Ruffalo said:
“I think this is a good entry into that time period, that [five] years between Infinity War and what happened in Endgame — there’s a gap where we don’t know what happened to him and all of a sudden he’s a professor, and he is no longer Banner after he couldn’t turn into the Hulk. I love how we start to open up that world, but I think there’s almost a standalone story to be told for just those two years. How did we go from a Banner who couldn’t turn into the Hulk anymore to all of a sudden this fully integrated version? This is a really nice way to introduce that story, but I also feel like it doesn’t satisfy exactly what happened in that time period. I think there’s a lot more to say about it.”
There are Rumors of Big Hulk Storylines to Come
The MCU is always dipping into Marvel Comics for story arcs and plot lines for its characters. When it comes to Hulk, however, there has been a pesky rights issue standing in the way of many potential Hulk solo movies, as well as the well-known fact that Hulk on his own has never managed to find consistent success. For this reason, he has been an integral part of the Avengers movies, buddied up with Thor for Thor: Ragnarok, and now is appearing in tandem with Jennifer Walters in She-Hulk. That doesn’t mean that there are no plans for Hulk’s future being put in place.
There have been rumors recently that the rights to the Hulk’s solo possibilities reverting back to Marvel Studios, and some fans are hoping to see a World War Hulk storyline being developed. This is something that Ruffalo himself hinted that he could see happening, as he doesn’t seem to believe that Smart Hulk is a permanent fixture.
In the latest episode of She-Hulk, Banner is seen on board a Sakaarian spaceship, something that was already teased in the first episode and that could potentially set up the arrival of Hulk’s son as another project for the future.
She-Hulk: Attorney at Law is currently releasing new episodes each week on Disney+.