The Incredible Hulk: A Solitary Place/Like A Brother/Haunted [DVD] 
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Three adventures for scientist David Banner (Bill Bixby) and his green alter ego, the Hulk (Lou Ferrigno). In 'A Solitary Place', David retreats to a Mexican hideaway, but has his peace disturbed when a woman on the run asks for his help. 'Like a Brother' sees David facing racial prejudice when he takes a job at a car wash, while in 'Haunted' he is hired by Renee Stevens to help her move back into the family home where her sister drowned. However, once back in the house Renee becomes haunted by events from her past.
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 --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Bill Bixby is superb as Banner, bringing a deep sincerity to the role of the tormented doctor, whilst Ferrigno managers to deliver both equal amounts of fury and innocence to the Jade giant.
By following the fugitive's formula of 'man on the run', each episode is able to invoke suspense as Banner gets ever closer to his personal quest only to have it snatched away from him in the eleventh hour. This leaves the audience with much reflection as the sombre tones play out during the end credits, whilst Banner once again hits the road in search of his next opportunity.
The episodes offer many highlights, in particular "The Hulk breaks Las Vegas" as investigative reporter Jack Magee (Colvin) gets closer to discovering the connection the creature has to Banner. The real treat though is "747" which sees Banner travel cross country in the desperate hope to reach a doctor who may offer an answer. Unfortunately his journey is complicated by a rogue pilot and leads to a deep psychological battle as Banner has to take control of an aeroplane whilst fighting his own transformation.Read more ›
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.
I didn't find it as dark as some reviewers, though one of the episodes does feature a baby stealing operation, but I always found it engrossing and a pleasureable viewing experience.
Mostly the episodes feature David Banner overhearing some scoundrels planning a dasterdly deed whereupon they discover him listening in, give him a few slaps and dump him in a container/out of sight so that he can transform and do his thing leaving them none the wiser that weedy David and the green one are one and the same. This is in no way a criticism but the very epitomy of its charm. The transformations are great, I especially like the latter stage when it is Bill Bixby (David Banner)with a huge forehead, eyebrows and mad hair but his little face all green. Lou Ferrigno looks suitably impressive as 'The Hulk' and must be enormous in real life though not as big as the foot cast they showed in one of the episodes which would have put him somewhere in the 20 foot + region.
The stories are good and the effects vary greatly, the whole gorilla thing in one episode was a bit silly but as I said this programme can seemingly charm its way through anything.
Interestingly one of the episodes about a female trucker used a number of clips from Spielbergs 'Duel' I had recently seen this film again and spotted these sequences easily. Even the end sequence with the truck going over the cliff was used. It would be interesting to find out if any other borrowed scenes were utilised from other sources, I suspect the earthquake episode may have done the same.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
nice to see again this serie, with nice Bill Bixby and the frightening hulkPublished 9 months ago by Chantal Xhaflaire