Supervising the trial of an experimental gamma bomb for the U.S. Defense Department at a nuclear research
facility in New Mexico, Dr. Robert Bruce Banner selflessly rushed to the rescue of an ignorant teenager who had wandered onto
the testing field as the countdown ticked inexorably toward zero. After shoving young Rick Jones to safety in a nearby ditch, Banner was struck full-force by the bomb blast. He survived, but was irradiated
by the deadly gamma energy.
At first, Banner would transform into the brutish gray Hulk only at sunset, and revert to human form
at dawn. Eventually, his changes into the childlike green Hulk came to be triggered by the release of adrenaline when he was
intensely excited, no matter what time of day. The green Hulk possesses little of Banner's memory and intelligence, and is
easily enraged; making him a menace to society.
Since Banner's initial transformation into the Hulk, military forces commanded by the implacable General Thaddeus "Thunderbolt" Ross; father of his late wife, Betty -- have hunted him continually.
For a short time, Banner successfully treated his condition with radiation and was able to maintain
enough of his own personality when he became the Hulk to control himself in that form. Subsequently, he helped found the Avengers
and even received a presidential pardon. Ultimately, however, the Hulk reverted into a brutish menace.
Gamma-powered psychiatrist Leonard "Doc" Samson captured the Hulk and successfully separated Banner and his alter ego. Without Banner's psyche to restrain
him, the Hulk became a greater danger than ever before. Realizing there was only one way to reign in the Hulk, Banner agreed
to merge with the monster. But the stress of the re-integration fractured Banner's subconscious, creating the street-smart
gray Hulk. During this time, he spent several years in Las Vegas, sometimes operating as an enforcer calling himself Mr. Fixit
(or "Joe Fixit.") The smart-mouth Fixit was an ill-tempered, wise-cracking, thuggish brute whose personality resembled that
of his father and the fraternity boys who surrounded him in college. It was also at this time that Joe Fixit began his a short-lived
relationship with the future wife of Rick Jones, Marlo Chandler. In this state of the Hulk, Banner again found himself changing
into the Hulk at night and into his human form in the light of the day.
Soon after, the swirling mess of persona and mentalities took their toll on the ever-flustered mind
of Dr. Banner, and a battle for supremacy and control took place in Banner's subconscious. With assistance by the Ringmaster and his hypnotic abilities, Doc Samson tapped into the subconscious of Banner and reached his separate
incarnations. Through this hypnosis, Banner, the green Hulk, and the grey Fixit all aligned to face their true inner demons--
Banner's unresolved issues with his abusive father and the murderer of his mother. With this realization, Banner was able
to fuse these mentalities together, finding peace of mind. However, a green but intelligent version of the Hulk emerged. He
had the mentality of Dr. Banner but the body and abilities of the Hulk.
Unfortunately Dr. Banner soon realized that he must once again keep his temper in check, as if he let
his rage loose, the mentality of the savage green Hulk would soon take over, albeit in the form of Banner's human body. Without
the strength of the Hulk and filled with the Green Goliath's rage and belief of his old abilities, he proved to be a great
danger to himself. This was, however, not to last. During the assault of the being known as Onslaught, the Hulk asked Jean Grey to let the green Hulk loose from its mental prison in order to use his maximum
potential and abilities to defeat the menace. In a strange twist, Banner became divided. The Banner physically went away to
a parallel world created upon Onslaught's defeat, where he once again became the savage green Hulk. Remaining on Earth, was
a cold, somewhat unfeeling but intelligible version of the jade monster. This version of the Hulk also found himself allied
with Apocalypse (En Sabah Nur), who made Hulk into one of his Four Horsemen.
This surly version of the Hulk remained in this state, never changing until much later when the consciousness
of Banner was awakened from a personal hell where he was trapped in his own subconscious and haunted by his memories of his
father, his future self (the Maestro), the Leader, and his past Banner and Hulk incarnations. Banner's freedom and escape from this subconscious hell was
only achieved through self-realization and the understanding that his true strength came from within, proving his redemption
from his fears. Upon this realization, Banner was guided to consciousness though the visage of his true love, Betty.
Though never a team player, the Hulk joined forces with the Dr. Strange, Master of the Mystic Arts, and Namor, the Atlantean Sub-Mariner, to defeat the techno-wizard Yandroth and his ultimate computer, the Omegatron. Thereafter, this loose-knit band of Defenders would unite periodically to oppose threats to humanity. The original Defenders reluctantly re-formed
when Yandroth surfaced again to menace the world. Though the heroes defeated his plan, Yandroth used his sorcery to levy a
deathbed curse upon their heads, binding them to come together in times of crisis.
After the events of the M-Day, Banner sought refugee and peace in Alaska, where he lived as a hermit loosely connected to the town
community. He was eventually tracked down by Nick Fury of S.H.I.E.L.D., who required his help in defeating the Hydra space weapon called the Godseye which could detonate all
the nuclear bombs in the world. Sent up as the Hulk, he discovered that the Godseye was actually a rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. weapon
that could match the strength of any enemy. In the ensuing battle, the Godseye found that though it could try, it could not
match the increasing power of the Hulk, and it exploded.
A S.H.I.E.L.D. commissioned space shuttle was sent to retrieve the Hulk, or so he believed. Seizing
the opportunity to be rid of the Hulk, a group of superheroes known as the Illuminati decided to jettison the shuttle into space, to a planet with no intelligent lifeforms. Unfortunately, there was a navigation error, and the Hulk landed on Planet
Sakaar, a planet full of barbarian tribes, gladiator battles and ruled over by a corrupt empire. The planet was situated near
a portal, which gave it access to several different cultures and technologies. Weakened by his travel, Hulk was taken captive
and sold into slavery and sent to the Great Arena to die in the games. After overcoming the first challenge set before him,
Hulk was given the opportunity to be pardoned by the Red King, but instead he chose to attack him and was knocked out by the
Red King when he became distracted. The Hulk soon joined several others in a group that would have to learn to fight together
and, in result, he became warbound. The Hulk and his team of misfit warriors overcame the challenges set before them and became
known as great warriors throughout the planet, inspiring many to rebel against the Red King.
Soon thereafer, Hulk and his team were forced to fight a captured Silver Surfer who struck them fiercely. Hulk, angered by Silver Surfer's betrayal, attacked the Surfer and inadvertently
released him from the disc implant embedded within him. Freed of the implant disc that kept him prisoner, the Surfer destroyed
the rest of the implant discs embedded in the rest of the warriors. The Hulk declined the Silver Surfer's offer of transportation
back to his world so as to finish things on Planet Sakaar. Hulk then stood with his freed warbound companions against the
tyrannous Red King.