Chuck’s Critiques by Charles LePage
Planet Hulk is the best “comic book” cartoon DVD I’ve watched recently, and I’ve sat down and viewed five of them in the last two weeks. From beginning to end, I found the plot, dialogue, animation and action to be solid, though not perfect.
Planet Hulk tells the story of one angry Hulk, banished from Earth by Iron Man and several other heroes. They intend for him to land on an uninhabited world where he can’t be bothered by anyone and he can’t hurt anyone, but instead, the ship he is in crash lands on a planet where he is enslaved and forced to battle as a gladiator. As you can imagine, he defeats and destroys any combatant put in his way. The natives hope he is the answer to their prayers for release, but Hulk intends to serve his own purposes.
I have not read most of the Planet Hulk comics, but I still found the movie easy to follow. There were some story points I did not get- for instance, the Hulk in the spaceship that crash landed did not talk, but after he was captured, the Hulk did start talking. Was he just too angry in the ship to speak, or did the slave disc co mingle his intelligence with Bruce Banner’s? And why didn’t Hulk ever turn back to Bruce on the slave planet? Why did Hulk and the others still understand each other after the slave discs were destroyed? And if the discs could be destroyed by lightning or an object thrown by the Hulk, why didn’t someone bust them sooner?
The inclusion of Beta Ray Bill was a little confusing too. The flashback of him and Thor fighting aliens on Earth initially appeared to be that of Thor’s first comic book story, but Beta Ray wasn’t around then. I guess for most viewers knowing he is one of Earth’s super heroes is probably enough.
Let me congratulate the creators of Planet Hulk for not injecting useless foul language into the movie. When I watched Green Lantern and Hulk Vs, for instance, it seemed like mild foul language was placed in the movies just to boost the parental rating. Planet Hulk’s theme is inherently “mature” (i.e., not for small children), and no padding was necessary.
I recommend this movie for teens and above.