Happy 50th Birthday Incredible Hulk

May 31, 2012
Originally published on May 31, 2012 1:52 am
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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

50 years ago this month, two comic book artists Stan Lee and Jack Kirby introduced the Incredible Hulk to the world. For those who are not up on their superheroes, the Hulk is the volatile alter ego of Dr. Bruce Banner, a physicist who's inadvertently exposed to radiation. As a result, whenever Dr. Banner gets angry or upset, he transforms into a giant, raging green monster, capable of stunning feats of strength.

In the late 1970s, the Hulk got his own television show on CBS, although he was known as David Banner, not Bruce.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SERIES, "THE INCREDIBLE HULK)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Dr. David Banner, physician, scientist searching for a way to tap into the hidden strengths that all humans have. Then an accidental overdose of gamma radiation alters his body chemistry.

GREENE: That television series ended in 1982, but the Hulk starred in several made for TV movies and in an animated cartoon. He also appeared on the silver screen, most recently in this year's blockbuster hit, "The Avengers."

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "THE AVENGERS")

TOM HIDDLESTON: (as Loki) I have an army.

(SOUNDBITE OF AN EXPLOSION)

ROBERT DOWNEY, JR.: (as Tony Stark) We have a Hulk.

GREENE: Fifty years old and still going strong. You better wish him a happy birthday, otherwise he might get angry.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "THE AVENGERS")

MARK RUFFALO: (as Bruce Banner) You wouldn't like me when I'm angry.

GREENE: Well put, Dr. Banner. This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.