The Incredible Hulk/The Incredible Hulk Returns

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The Incredible Hulk Returns
Airdate May 22, 1988
Written by Nicholas Corea
Directed by Nicholas Corea
Network NBC
Style 120-minute science fiction/superhero drama
Company Bixby-Brandon Productions,
20th Century Fox Television
Distributor 20th Television,
Disney-ABC Domestic Television
Origin USA
← 5x07
A Minor Problem
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The Trial of the Incredible Hulk
The Incredible Hulk
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The Incredible Hulk Returns is a television movie based on The Incredible Hulk.

Bill Bixby (David Banner)

Starring: Lou Ferrigno (The Hulk)

Also Starring: Jack Colvin (Jack McGee)

Guest Starring: Lee Purcell (Maggie Shaw), Charles Napier (Mike Fouche), John Gabriel (Joshua Lambert), Jay Baker (Zack Lambert), Tim Thomerson (Jack LeBeau)

Introducing: Eric Kramer (Thor)

and Steve Levitt (Donald Blake)

Co-Starring: William Riley (Sgt. Lindsey), Tom Finnegan (Capt. Brills), Donald Willis (Elwood)

Featuring: Carl Nick Ciafalio (Barner), Bobby Travis McLaughlin (Roarke), Burke Denis (Henchman), Nick Costa (Henchman), Peisha McPhee (Girl in Party), William Malone (Henchman), Joanie Allen (Reporter)


Plot Overview

David Banner, living under the pseudonym David Banyon, has made (another) new life for himself, this time getting a job through his girlfriend Maggie Shaw and developing a gamma transponder under the auspices of the Joshua Lambert Foundtation. This transponder could not only prove to be a source of almost unlimited energy, but also finally release David from his personal hell. David finishes the machine, and is about to use it on himself when a former pupil, Donald Blake, stops the countdown. He is a former student of Banner who has sought Banner out to help with a "problem": while on an expedition to the northern reaches, Donald stumbled on an ancient war hammer which has the ability to summon Thor, an ancient Norse warrior. Neither Donald nor Thor are happy that Oden has spun a link between the two men; Thor must prove himself worthy to Oden before Oden will allow him into Valhalla. Thor is angry that Donald has summoned him once again, and partially demolishes the lab, causing David to transform into the Hulk for the first time in two years. Don sends Thor after the Hulk when the Hulk performs his finishing move (running away); after reverting David chastises Don for running away from his problems instead of facing up to them.

Meanwhile, the story of the "Troll" has hit the papers, and Jack McGee, the reporter who has chased after the Hulk for many years, grovels his way into following the story for the newspapers again.

Zack Lambert, the brother of Joshua Lambert, is in the meantime scheming with Jack LeBeau and Mike Fouche to steal the transponder with David so they can turn the machine into a weapon. At David's urging, Donald summons Thor to explore their relationship; Thor instead insists that Donald take him out on the town, and they bond over a few beers at the local biker bar.

David has been working late at the lab to try to fix Thor's damage, and notices that there is a strange truck at the entrance. The phones are dead, and when David and the security guard go to see what's going on, they are accosted by Fouche; David transforms into the Hulk, and the bad guys are foiled, if only temporarily. The schemers quickly decide that it will be easier to kidnap Maggie, and there is a confrontation with Thor and the Hulk once again. David destroys the transponder to keep it from being made into a weapon, once again dashing his hopes for a cure, and while doing so, receives the ransom demands. David and Donald then go to Zack's hospital room (he has been shot to cover up the plot and later dies), find out where they are keeping Maggie, and with Thor's and the Hulk's help, rescue Maggie and help to bring the thieves to justice. There is no justice for David, however; since he and the Hulk have been exposed, he must go on the road once again.


Arc Advancement





The Show

Behind the Scenes

Allusions and References

  • Jack McGee, played by Jack Colvin, was the same character who pursued David Banner in the original television series. This TV movie also marked McGee's final appearance in the Incredible Hulk franchise

Memorable Moments


  • Don: You Buick on stilts!
Thor: That's an insult, isn't it?
Don: Uhh, yeah, that is.
  • Don: (Obviously drunk) Can you drive my car?
Thor: By Odin I will try.
  • Jack McGee: I'm just looking for Banyon.
Thor: Well, then, you have found him, mush spine.
  • Thor: I like you, Blake, but only when you're asleep.
Don: ...
Thor: It's a joke!