Thursday, July 10, 2014

I Hope They Bring Betty Ross Back to the MCU

The Incredible Hulk seems to be the least-regarded of the films that are officially in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Other than a few references here and there, the film seems to have been more or less left behind. And while I guess I'm okay with that cliffhanger about the Leader going unresolved, I'd really like to see Betty Ross come back in the future. I know that lots of people (read: all of Tumblr) are really invested in the "Science Bros" friendship between Tony Stark and Bruce Banner, and that's a cool element that the fans have played up, but I think the relationship between Bruce and Betty is equally important.

But of course I do: I have an anger problem.

I think the Science Bros stuff plays up Bruce's awkwardness and anxiety, but the element I relate to even more has always been Bruce's panic and anger. That's why I've always been so into the Hulk; in too many respects, I am the Hulk. And whatever the faults of Ang Lee's 2003 movie, that was the movie that made me realize what it must be like for other people to live in terror of my volatile anger issues. I came to realize that part of the reason I was so fascinated by the Hulk was that, through him, I could understand what anger does to the people who can't control it. People like my mother, whose volatile anger I lived in terror of as a child.

So I guess I take the Hulk personally. One of my favorite scenes in the MCU is the moment in The Incredible Hulk when the Hulk has Betty in that cave. He rages at the surrounding storm in anger. That's me, or at least it very much used to be: ill-defined, unfiltered, misdirected rage at everything. And Betty soothes him. She calms him with her voice and her presence. That means a lot to me. I want to see more of how Bruce deals with not being able to have a normal relationship with the woman he loves.

In The Avengers, we saw Bruce turn into the Hulk twice. The first time was an uncontrolled panic response to a high pressure situation. The second time was on his own, channeling his omnipresent anger and directing it. The conflict between those two temperaments is compelling. I'd love to see if he can balance that with tentatively approaching Betty again. That kind of thing gives me hope.

I know there's always talk about what else the MCU can do with the Hulk. That seems like an interesting layer to me.

But of course it does: I have an anger problem. And I'm reassured when I see that, when you're making every effort you can to control them, you still get to be loved and supported.


Roger Owen Green said...

I never saw either of the Hulk pictures this century, or the Avengers, for that matter. Always thought he was the most difficult to transfer to film.

I did watch the TV show with Bill and Lou, and I did relate to that, even though I thought it was largely a remake of the TV show The Fugitive.

SamuraiFrog said...

I loved that show when I was a kid. The Incredible Hulk with Edward Norton really took most of its cues from the TV series; I think part of the reason the movie doesn't completely work is that Marvel wants big action set pieces, but Norton clearly wants it to be something of an indie drama. Both pieces don't necessarily mix.

I'm just young enough that I could grow up on Lou Ferrigno, and years later see reruns of The Fugitive and think, "Oh, so it's like The Incredible Hulk."

Devilham said...

I actually liked the Ang Lee movie, it's nice to hear you got something out of it too, as I it's kind of lonely liking that movie