The Hulk is the strongest superhero of them all, but he’s not the smartest. And what he has in sheer power he often loses in common sense, decency, and overall dignity, as evidenced throughout his lengthy comics career. Here are nine stories of the Hulk that are incredible only in the sense that they are incredibly dumb.
1) The Day the Hulk Joined the Circus
In Avengers #1 — the very first issue of Marvel’s ultimate superhero team — the Hulk joined up, only to pretty much immediately run off thanks to a Loki-fueled misunderstanding. What’s a giant, green, rampaging monster of practically pure id to do when his new superhero teammates don’t trust him? Join the circus, put on clown make-up and pretend to be a robot, obviously. The Hulk decides to think things through (a sentence that should never been spoken or written) but pretending to be Mechano the Clown, and juggling some presumably terrified circus animals.
2) The Hulk Gets Drunk and Has Sex in Public
In the very recent Indestructible Hulk #7.1, Bruce Banner is dead and buried at sea. The Hulk — who has been physically separated by his alter-ego — decides to ride dinosaurs in the Savage Land, hunt for treasure, and get completely shit-faced. Eventually, Red She-Hulk — a.k.a. Bruce Banner’s gal pal Betty Ross — catches up with the inebriated Hulk and they fight. Nearby, a villain called the Orb tries to attack them, but of course this doesn’t work and they merely beat the hell out of the bad guy. And then they have sex right in front of him. And a post-coital Hulk turns back into Bruce Banner. Comics, everybody!
3) The Day the Hulk Became the Messenger of God
Yes, Hulk masquerades as the official Voice of God to a supremely confused Abomination for a while, though. The Hulk had been shrunk to less than six-inches tall by Thanos during the Infinity Gauntlet saga, and had decided to hitch a ride on the shoulder of one of his fiercest foes, the Abomination, as he’s passing by (don’t ask). When the Abomination spies his ex-wife Nadia, he desperately wants to win her back, despite being a giant green rage monster. The Hulk whispers in the Abomination’s war, “This is the Lord. And I’m not happy. Not one bit.” After a bit of give and take (i.e., where the Abomination demands “The Lord” tell him his mother’s last maiden name to prove himself, and “The Lord” says “No!” and punches him in the face) the Abomination is convinced to leave his ex-wife alone.
4) The Day the Hulk Got Raped
In the latest Defenders series, Umar — a magical being equivalent with Dormammu — decided to get a little sumpthin’ sumpthin’ when the Hulk stopped by. She quickly and easily enchanted the Hulk, who lasted a full six minutes as Umar’s lover before passing out from sheer ecstasy and turning back into Bruce Banner (which is apparently standard procedure everytime the Hulk has a quality fuck session).. Since Hulk did not give his consent, and Umar did in fact have sexual relations with Hulk only through magic, the Hulk was raped.
5) The Day the Hulk Cosplayed as the Abominable Snowman
The evil General Fang has decided to invade the principality of Lihasa in order to bring it under his communist regime. When the natives of Lihasa radioed for help against this Red Menace, somehow the only person who heard it was the Hulk and Rick Jones, who immediately flew over. The Hulk’s cunning plan was to put on a yeti costume, and use Fang’s troops superstitions about the creature to cause them to flee. Why the Hulk didn’t just want to 1) punch them or 2) create a few new superstitions is unknown. I think he wasd really just looking for an excuse to put on the costume.
6) The Day the Hulk Tried to Have Sex with His Cousin
For some reason, writer Paul Jenkins decided to make 2000’s Incredible Hulk Annual all about the Hulk’s quest to get laid. And rather than have the Hulk chase after any of the other indestructible women currently residing in the Marvel universe, he chooses to have him goes after his cousin Jennifer Walters, a.k.a. She-Hulk. It begins when the Avengers hear that the Hulk is rampaging through Central Park and go investigate. She-Hulk and the others keep Hulk busy while the Vision does a web search — I am not making this up — and discovers the Hulk is acting like a horny baboon, and he just wants to fuck. She-Hulk knows instinctively the person the Hulk wants to have sex with is her, and tries to let the Hulk down easy. The Hulk pouts and leaves. The end.
7) The Day the Hulk Killed Christmas
The down-on-his-luck Rhino mugs a Salvation Army Santa for his clothes and miraculously gets hired as a mall Santa in this issue of Hulk #378. The kids and adults are so enamored of the enormous St. Nick that Rhino’s heart grows three sizes and he decides to be good. But one kid notices Santa has a rhino horn underneath his cap, but swears not to tell anybody. The kid instantly blabs the truth next to where the Hulk and Rick Jones are standing, so Hulk decides to ensure that the Rhino loses this chance to do good and/or turn his life around. The Hulk starts to beat Santa up in full view of the children of the mall, while the Rhino explains that he’s pissed off because his outfit doesn’t come off and he hasn’t had sex since he put it on. The Rhino eventually gores the Hulk, to the horror of the children (who are morons) that Santa has hurt “the gray man.” But in front of the plaintive view of a little, Cindy Lou-esque girl, the Hulk and “santa” agree to peacefully walk away rather than destroy her belief in Santa Claus. The kicker is that Rick Jones is telling this story to a group of kids, hoping to teach them to work together instead of bullying a pudgy kid. But then the pudgy kid kicks Rick in the shins and screams he’s “big dumb lying doody-head” Merry Christmas, everybody!
8) The Day the Hulk Was Nearly Raped by Homosexuals in a YMCA Bathroom
The legendary Cyrique Lamar already mentioned this insane 1980 issue of The Rampaging Hulk, but as far days when the Hulk failed to be incredible, it stands out. Bruce Banner, down on his luck in a manner most similar to his adventures on the then-very-popular Incredible Hulk TV show, has to stay at a YMCA. While he’s taken a shower, two stereotypes men named Dewey and Luellen decide ol’ Bruce Banner has a baby-face, and corner him in the bathroom. Somehow, the threat of getting raped ina public shower does not apparently make Bruce Banner angry, just afraid and confused, because he has to threaten the two men that he’s the guy who turns into the Hulk to get away, rather than actually turn into the Hulk. I should point out that this horrible scene is only one of many, many horrible scenes in the issue; definitely click here to learn more.
9) The Day the Hulk Played Baseball in Blackface
Man, where to even begin. The Hulk and Betty are walking through town, bitching about how they need money (this is Incredible Hulk #435, for the record). A baseball hits Hulk in the head, and he throws it back, because apparently getting beaned on the head is one of the few things that doesn’t make Hulk angry. Of course, the manager sees the 200mph pitch and offers Hulk a contract on the spot, which Hulk accepts. Of course, the Hulk can’t play as the Hulk — surely someone would notice the big green ringer on the pitcher’s mound — so he needs a disguise, and since Betty says his skin is easier to darken than lighten, this means the Hulk puts on blackface. The fact that he admits the NAACP would picket him if they found out does not mitigate this insanity at all.
A rival team, hearing that about this new “Bob Danner” player that everyone is talking about, hires the Rhino to be their ringer, and the two teams face off. The Hulk catches a ball by jumping 22-feet in the air, the Rhino beans the Hulk with a pitch, a “Who’s on First?” joke is uttered with out shame, and eventually the two fight and the Hulk gets fired. In the end, Betty gives Hulk a baseball card of him she made up, so Hulk would always have a reminder of the time he wore blackface to make a quick buck.