One of the most memorable moments from Thor: Ragnarok has now made its way into Marvel Comics thanks to the latest issue of Incredible Hulk. After Avengers: Age of Ultron ended with Bruce Banner locked in Hulk mode and on a Quinjet away from his teammates, speculation ran rampant that the hero would next appear in an adaptation of the Planet Hulk storyline by writer Greg Pak. Instead, the broad strokes of the arc were worked into Thor: Ragnarok, disappointing some fans but giving audiences the closest thing to a Planet Hulk story that’s ever likely to be put on film.
Marvel has done well releasing new comic arcs and one-shots to coincide with film adaptations of their stories and characters. Avengers: Infinity War, for instance, has inspired a new Thanos comic – though it’s also led to Jim Starlin severing ties with Marvel. When it comes to Thor: Ragnarok, Marvel used their new Legacy initiative to revisit Planet Hulk by sending Amadeus Cho to Sakaar to fight in the arena for the planet’s new ruler. To bring things full circle, the latest issue of the book recreates a key scene from the third Thor movie.
Incredible Hulk #711 by Pak and Greg Land sees Cho fresh from victory versus his first three opponents in the Warlord’s planet-wide gauntlet. While a faction from Sakaar brought Hulk to their world to defeat the Warlord, the villain has used a similar technique to call in Cho’s next opponent – prompting a nod to the movie that helped inspire the comic:
Not only does Hulk not get to finish his meta-joke, but Odinson appears more than willing to fight his so-called friend. Superheroes battling each other is nothing new – it’s inspired countless films in the past few years, including Thor: Ragnarok – but the Unworthy Thor’s arrival will likely lead to he and Hulk joining forces against Warlord next issue.
Marvel’s latest smash-hit film hasn’t only been called out in Incredible Hulk, either. The Doctor Strange comic had a Thor: Ragnarok joke recently – fittingly so, as Loki played a big role in the book. For a movie so packed with humor as Ragnarok, it makes sense that some of the more comical characters on the page would pay tribute to the film. Marvel’s also likely more than happy to toot their own horn given Ragnarok‘s continued success.
Thor: Ragnarok has passed Wonder Woman at the box office, and it still has a ways to go before it bows out of theaters. Once it does, Marvel will be right on the verge of putting out Black Panther to kick off what’s sure to be a massive 2018 for the studio. Until then, expect more nods to Thor: Ragnarok in the comics.
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