Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Wolverine vs. the Hulk

Season: 1
Episode Number: 7
Season Episode Number: 7
Production Number: 107
Airdate: October 18, 2008

Writer: Christopher Yost
Director: Doug Murphy

Voices: Steven Blum (Wolverine), Alex Desert (Nick Fury), Fred Tatasciore (Hulk), Gabriel Mann (Bruce Banner), Chris Edgerly (Agent Haskett).

Plot: Nick Fury enlists the help of Wolverine to take down a brutal force that is destroying cities: The Incredible Hulk. Only, there is more going on than Fury is letting on and it means that Wolverine and the Hulk might have to get their fight over with soon as the real threat is on the way.

Review (Warning! Spoilers!): My first reaction after watching this episode is where are the X-Men? This is the third episode in a row where the X-Men haven't seen any action. Sure, the show is called Wolverine and the X-Men and Wolvie definitely is the star, but with a title like that I expect to see some X-Men!

I have heard that a general rule for TV writing is that the first seven episodes set up the premise for the show before going to far down the continuity hole. These first seven episodes of Wolverine sure are setting up Wolverine's character as well as the world he lives in and his mission to reform the X-Men, but we really need to get on with the impending storyarc that we all know is there.

Now that I've got that out of my system, let's talk about this episode:

Many online sources have stated that this episode is round two between Wolverine and the Hulk (round one is the Hulk vs. Wolverine DVD movie), however, this continuity is messed up due to the Canadian airing of this episode three months before the debut of the DVD. I love the fact that Steven Blum and Fred Tatasciore provide the voices of Wolverine and the Hulk for both productions.

While this episode is a fun romp in the park, it doesn't really serve any purpose to the overall storyline. We are not introduced to any new characters from the X-Men world. Fury even states that he is staying out of the way of the whole mutant round-up business claiming it's just 'politics'. This leads us to believe that we may never see Nick Fury again.

In fact, if Nick is to play a main role in the future, this episode could have featured the Juggernaut, Sabretooth, or even Unus the Untouchable rather than bringing in a guest star this early in the series.

That being said, the Hulk is well-written in this episode. His brute strength coupled with his mental state worked very well as a means for Wolverine (and the animators) to show some of his fancy moves. Plus, he's funny.

The character of Nick Fury has been forever changed by Mark Millar's Ultimates comic book. Fury's design in this episode is influenced by his Ultimate black persona as well as his deceptive and manipulative behaviour, which one would expect from a man who basically controls the world. The interaction between him and Wolverine is priceless.

Oh yeah, and there's this whole subplot about Wendigo. I know that Wendigo runs into Wolverine every once in a while but he's really a Hulk villain. So what were we watching? An episode of Wolverine and the X-Men guest starring the Hulk? Or and episode of The Hulk guest starring Wolverine?

DVD Releases:
  • Wolverine and the X-Men, The Complete First Season (Canada Exclusive)
  • Wolverine and the X-Men: Deadly Enemies
  • Planet Hulk Two Disc Special Edition

  • Blu-ray Releases:
  • Planet Hulk

  • Back to Episode Guide


    Grimtard said...

    I believe this episode was based loosely on both Marvel's Ultimate universe, where Nick Fury sends Wolverine after Hulk, and the original comic book in which Wolverine appeared, where he interrupts a fight between Hulk and Wendigo (he's billed as "Canada's First Superhero". So technically, since this is a throwback to his own, very first guest appearance, it only seems right that the episode focus mainly on those three characters.

    Ashley said...

    isn't Wendigo a bit too violent for a kid's show because, to become a Wendigo you have to be a cannibal in the Canadian wilderness

    Orphen said...

    I must say this episode just seemed like a throw away episode to me. I agree with you that it just seems a bit out of place, and specially so early in the series to have a guest star that typically steals a show regardless of what he is put in.

    The episode itself was fine but I enjoy Hulk Vs. Wolverine a lot more, a much better story and superior action. It also helps when you do not have the same type of restrictions that you would have on TV and this episode demonstrates that fact all too well in comparison to Hulk Vs. Wolverine in the direct to DVD film.