Today, I add a new figure to my shelf: Dr. Bruce Banner from the 2-Pack released earlier this year with Gray Hulk.
This set is based on the first appearance of Banner and Hulk, as seen in 1962’s Incredible Hulk #1 comic. However, I mistakenly thought Hasbro got it wrong. The art on the side of the box is an homage to that Hulk #1 cover, and if you look at the iconic cover art from that issue, it shows Banner in a mauve outfit and a pale blue tie. But that look does not reflect what’s actually in the issue. Reading further, Banner has an orange shirt and blue pants, and the figure’s deco matches it perfectly.
Outside of the comics-accurate first appearance outfit, the figure itself is nothing special. We have reused parts from several other figures, including the lab coat and arms we’ve seen before. None of this is terrible; it just isn’t very exciting. The figure is difficult to pose in many ways because the coat impedes leg movement backward, and the figure tends to fall forward if the legs are in any position other than straight. There are peg holes in the feet, but they are so shallow I wonder why they are there at all. A peg cannot go deep enough to stabilize this wobbly figure.
What is new is the Bruce Banner head sculpt, which looks relatively accurate. He has removable glasses, but the glasses seem just a bit too big for his head. They look slightly awkward when worn, though the arms nestle behind the ears nicely.
I’m happy to get the character. A single-release Bruce Banner probably wouldn’t sell very well, so packing him with a Hulk makes sense (and even so, I did get this two-pack on clearance at Target). But outside of a box being checked for an iconic comic character, Puny Banner is just an average figure.