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The Incredible Hulk: The Complete First Season [DVD]
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The complete first season of the classic 1970s series based on the popular Marvel Comics character. Bill Bixby plays tormented scientist David Banner, who has become exposed to dangerous gamma radiation that causes him to transform into the monstrous Hulk (played by Lou Ferrigno). On the run across the USA in search of a cure, Banner rights wrongs and tries to keep control of his violent alter-ego. In this series, Banner awakens in a motel next to a dead woman and fears he may have killed her as the Hulk, and stumbles across an underground experiment to harvest DNA from newborn babies. Episodes are: 'Pilot'; 'Death in the Family'; 'The Final Round'; 'The Beast Within'; 'Of Guilt, Models and Murder'; 'Terror in Times Square'; '747'; 'The Hulk Breaks Las Vegas'; 'Never Give a Trucker an Even Break'; 'Life and Death'; 'Earthquakes Happen'; and 'The Waterfront Story'.
One of the best television adaptations of a comic book, The Incredible Hulk (1978-82) lent gravity and pathos to the fantastic premise--an experiment gone wrong causes a scientist to transform into a giant creature whenever he becomes angry--established in the popular Marvel Comics series. The network version stripped away the Hulk's outlandish foes (as well as his rudimentary speech) and instead focused on the loneliness of his human alter ego, David Banner (well played by the late Bill Bixby), as he traveled across the United States in search of a cure for his affliction as well as an escape from a prying reporter (the late Jack Colvin, also terrific). But despite its Fugitive-like premise, the TV Hulk never lost its comic book audience thanks to the plausibly ferocious performance by actor/bodybuilder Lou Ferrigno (whose growls were dubbed by actors Ted Cassidy and Charles Napier) as the Hulk, who handled the action portions of the show with plausibly superhuman brawn. The Complete First Season set contains both of the pilots that kicked off the series ("Pilot" was previously released on a separate single disc) as well as all 10 episodes from the first season; among the adventures encountered by David and the Hulk are a gambling scandal in Vegas ("The Hulk Breaks Las Vegas"), a meltdown at a nuclear facility ("Earthquakes Happen"), and a runaway plane ("747," which reunites Bixby with his Courtship of Eddie's Father co-star Brandon Cruz).
Extras on the set have been the subject of much Internet debate--the commentary by series writer/producer/director Kenneth Johnson on "Pilot" is the same as on the previous DVD release of this episode (as well as the introduction by Ferrigno), and a proposed gag reel mentioned in promotional material has been moved to a future DVD release. The sole fresh bonus material is "Stop the Presses," an episode taken from the series' second season. --Paul Gaita
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Some of the episode are great fun, including the hulk trapped on a passenger plane about to crash.
There's no CGI the hulk looks authentic and real. The actor playing him must have been a big man. The violence is pretty tame, there's no blood, he mainly chucks people round in slow motion or knocks them out. He often bends a metal bar as a demonstration of his strength. Banner is potrayed as a decent man, intelligent, caring and adventurous. Through his travels he often finds himself confronting crinimals after stumbling onto their plots. Placed in highly stressful situations he undergoes a frightening transformations. The music is great, sometimes a touch hillbilly, the acting is pretty well done and there's a strong supporting cast.
A death in the family follows on from the original pilot, and finds David befriending a young heiress, who, he soon discovers is in danger of becoming the victim of a dastardly plot. can david and the Hulk save the day? stars Laurie Prange and william Daniels (Knight rider)
Brilliant, human Drama. Bill Bixby is simply exceptionall in his role of Dr David Banner.
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