Joss Whedon’s The Avengers has One Possible Problem

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I’m so excited about the upcoming Avengers movie, and the fact that Joss Whedon is in charge, especially now that I just read the point of view is going to be that of the newly awakened Captain America. There is no doubt this will live up to my every expectation…or is there.

What pray tell would I think is going to be wrong with the film? The Hulk, that’s what. The Hulk has been done twice.  The Hulk has been done badly twice. While the Zak Penn/Edward Norton film was loads better than the Ang Lee/Eric Bana disaster, it still wasn’t great. I did like Edward Norton as Bruce Banner. He’s nice to look at and charismatic, much like the original Bruce Banner, Bill Bixby. (I had such a crush on Bill Bixby when I was a kid.) The CG Hulks have been awful, and it’s sad that they can’t create a Hulk that looks any better than Lou Ferrigno in a pair of ripped up denim hot pants.  Still though, this is an aspect of the film that can be tweaked and fixed. What can’t be fixed is the new casting of Bruce Banner, Mark Ruffalo.

First of all, he looks too old. Yes, Bill Bixby was 43 when he played Bruce Banner, and Ed Norton’s Banner was played by a 39 year old Ed Norton, so the age progression of the movies is correct, but Norton didn’t look like he was pushing 40. Mark Ruffalo’s shaggy dog hair and weathered (no I will not say rugged) face is just not exuding the gentle spirit that is Bruce Banner. Second, and most importantly, Mark Ruffalo is a downer. I don’t want to leave the theater, after seeing one of the greatest creations in comic movie history, feeling down and dejected. This sad bastard indie icon has the real possibility of inducing misery among movie goers.

I want to trust Joss Whedon. He has created some of what I consider to be the greatest geekdom of all time, and creating awesomeness runs in his family. Also, I’m not going to be swayed from being one of the first in line to see The Avengers just because Mark Ruffalo quite possibly could kill one of my favorite childhood characters, but this is one time I really hope I’m wrong.


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