We all saw Bruce Banner and Hulk merging to become the Smart Hulk in Avengers: Endgame. However, this part of Hulk’s arc explains the existence of She-Hulk in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The character of Hulk hasn’t had the best of runs on the big screen. The character was first seen in Ang Lee’s Hulk starring Eric Bana in the lead role. The film received mixed reviews and the character was given another chance in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk, helmed by director Louis Leterrier. The film starred Edward Norton playing Bruce Banner. This movie officially introduced the character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe but it saw a recast when in 2012’s The Avengers.
How will She-Hulk Get Introduced in the MCU
The fans saw Mark Ruffalo playing the role in The Avengers and continued to play it in six more films in the future. We went on to see him in the post-credit scenes of Iron Man 3 followed by Avengers: Age of Ultron and Thor: Ragnarok, Avengers: Infinity, Captain Marvel’s mid-credits scene, and finally, Avengers: Endgame. However, the character did not enjoy a lot of screen presence and his role was reduced in the MCU. But, Avengers: Endgame saw the character undergoing a major transformation as Bruce and Hulk merged into each other to become the Smart Hulk.
Avengers: Endgame may have paved way for She-Hulk?
Endgame opens after a five-year time-jump following the snap and shows Steve Rogers, Scott Lang, and Natasha Romanoff meet Bruce Banner to explain their plan to undo the effects of Thanos’ snap. It is during this meeting that everyone gets to know that Bruce and Hulk are now the same. Smart Hulk says that he now “put the brains and the brawn together”, combining the “best of both worlds” but nothing much about his transformation is revealed. However, it’s clear that after years of struggle with Hulk, Bruce has finally found the balance he needed and this also makes the presence of She-Hulk in the MCU believable.
Among many recent developments, Marvel is planning for She-Hulk, which focuses on Jennifer Walters. The comics show Jennifer Walters as Bruce’s cousin who also acquires his Hulk condition after receiving a blood transfusion from him. Given Bruce’s struggles in the MCU, there’s no way that Bruce would infect someone from his family but he might do so if he knows how to manage the two sides. This is how the introduction of Smart Hulk in Endgame may open doors for She-Hulk in the MCU.
Fans do not get to see a proper arc for Smart Hulk in Endgame but the film may make way for She-Hulk and fans may get to finally see Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk one more time as he is set to appear in the series.