Over a decade has now passed since the Edward Norton-led The Incredible Hulk was released, marking Bruce Banner's only solo MCU outing. Since then, Hulk has been recast with Mark Ruffalo, who's appeared in four Avengers blockbusters, Thor: Ragnarok, and made several other cameos along the way. While the wait continues for Banner to re-enter the spotlight, his cousin Jennifer Walters will lead her own Disney+ series next year with She-Hulk.
Orphan Black's Tatiana Maslany will take on the titular role for a fourth-wall-breaking legal comedy that also sees the return of Ruffalo's Hulk and Tim Roth's Abomination. Meanwhile, The Good Place's Jameela Jamil, Arrow's Josh Segarra, and Hamilton's Renée Elise Goldsberry will all make their MCU debuts in unconfirmed roles.
While the series was initially revealed as a legal comedy, new reports have indicated it may be a lot bigger than that as it sets the stage for a major Hulk project on the way in the years to come.
She-Hulk Spoilers Reveal More New Hulks
During a recent appearance on the Change my Mind podcast, Geeks Worldwide editor-in-chief KC Walsh revealed several spoilery She-Hulk plot details.
As was previously rumored, the popular insider confirmed the series will be a comedy and Jameela Jamil's Titania is serving as the main villain. Walsh revealed that, prior to her villainous origins, Titania is an "exercise guru on the internet" but "things aren’t working out, so she goes and sees a life coach" who turns out to be Tim Roth's Emil Blonsky aka Abomination.
According to Walsh, Abomination will obtain a sample of She-Hulk's blood and begin "passing it out as the cure-all to your life problems" which will "set up all the Hulks for what’s next." Supposedly, Blonsky's use of this sample will lead to the creation of many popular comic characters including Titania, Skaar, Thunderbolt Ross' Red Hulk, and "a bunch of loser dudes on a construction site" which creates the Wrecking Crew.
With so many Hulks introduced, the series will seemingly set the stage for the rumored World War Hulk movie as "Banner and Jen are like, 'What the f---?' We've got to bring this back down to Earth" and deal with the countless Hulks showing up.
She-Hulk Sets Up Hulk's MCU Bigger Future
Due to a complicated rights issue, Universal holds the rights to distribute Hulk solo films while Marvel Studios can freely use him in other multi-character projects. It's because of this that 2008's The Incredible Hulk - which starred Edward Norton in the titular role - remains Bruce Banner's only solo entry in the MCU.
Based on this key financial complication, Mark Ruffalo's Hulk character arc in the MCU has instead stemmed across various team-up appearances. But with She-Hulk finally spotlighting the green heroes and setting the stage for the rumored World War Hulk movie, perhaps those days are over.
Interestingly, during Disney+ Day's brief She-Hulk teaser, Bruce Banner was still in his Professor Hulk form that debuted in Avengers: Endgame. However, his appearance in Shang-Chi's post-credits scene saw the gamma-infused Avenger back in his human form, meaning Hulk may return to his original state at some point in the series.
Fans of the Hulk have long been critical of his MCU adaptation as his strength and power have continually remained well below his comic counterpart. But as Phase 4 continues to follow the theme of heroes reaching their full potential, perhaps She-Hulk will see the original Avenger finally reaching new feats of power.
Titania, Skaar, Red Hulk, and the Wrecking Crew joining the MCU ought to be exciting news for fans of Hulk's corner of the Marvel universe. Thunderbolt Ross' frailty has become increasingly apparent over recent appearances which may be the factor that leads him to take Blonsky's miracle cure and finally become the Red Hulk.
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem the rumored World War Hulk movie will be the comic adaptation many had hoped for as it instead sets up a grand fight among the Hulks. Within the original comic source material, Bruce Banner's Hulk returned to Earth after being banished by the Illuminati and faced off against the entire Marvel universe.
The initial report of World War Hulk's development claimed production is planned to begin in late 2022, meaning the Hulk-centric blockbuster could release as soon as 2023. Although, fans shouldn't expect any confirmation of the project until She-Hulk concludes its run to avoid spoiling the series.
She-Hulk will premiere in 2022, exclusively on Disney+, while the rumored World War Hulk movie has yet to be confirmed by Marvel Studios.