The Incredible Hulk was one of my favorite TV shows as a kid. The idea that with the right amount of gamma poisoning (or, perhaps, simple imagination) I could turn into a man with a big, strong, green monster trapped inside him was very appealing to a small boy who was always teased about his height. Well, to all the douchebags who made fun of me in school, fuck you! I've seen pictures of you from our high school reunions (which I have repeatedly refused to attend), and you all look exceedingly overweight and miserable and chained down to broken marriages and insufferable offspring! And me? Well, I am very comfortable about my 5'6" stature because it allows me to crawl in between celebrities legs at the Playboy Mansion and order off the kids' menu at Applebee's! So there! Yeah! Fuck you!
Whoa.... I lost it for a moment there.... Where was I...?
How much did I love the Hulk? I adored that character so much that when I got a bad grade on my report card (I think it was an A minus—okay, I'm exaggerating...but not by much), my mother knew how to hurt me and hurt me bad by ripping up several of my Hulk comic books and, as the ultimate cruel punishment, forbidding me to watch the series finale of The Incredible Hulk. I think that pretty much fucked me up for like ten years. Seriously.
I really liked the new film version of The Incredible Hulk. It so captured the melancholy and overall spirit of the original series that it felt like watching three episodes of the TV show back to back. Some of you might think that's a bad thing, especially if you disliked the show, but, for those of you who look back to those Bill Bixby/Lou Ferrigno years with fondness, you will know what I'm talking about and you will know that it's good. (And we're not going to talk about 2003's Hulk. We're just not. But just know that I used to do a hilarious impression of Nick Nolte in that film—until it damaged my vocal chords.) But it's not all doom and gloom because there's a healthy dose of comic book-sized battles, and there's so much man candy I could hardly stand it. Well, it's just Edward Norton, but he's more than enough to keep me spanking it for months. For those of you who think that the words "barely" and "legal" are my two favorite words in the English language, I'll have you know that Edward Norton is older than I am! You see? I'm diversifying!
(By the way, my favorite Edward Norton movie is the stirring 25th Hour, Spike Lee's moving, audacious, and deliciously overindulgent adaptation of a novel by David Benioff, who also wrote the screenplay. One of my favorite scenes of any movie of all time is Edward Norton's absolutely riveting five-minute "fuck you" monologue that happens near the beginning of the film. This, folks, is acting; this is writing; this is directing; this is it:)