We know that Hulk and Bruce Banner are two different personalities sharing the same body. Bruce Banner mostly doesn't trust the big guy (Hulk). However, Hulk takes over everytime someone tries to hurt Bruce. In Avengers, Bruce mentions that once he tried to shoot himself in the mouth, but Hulk spit it out.

In case you needed to kill me, but you can't! I know! I tried!... I got low. I didn't see an end, so I put a bullet in my mouth... and the other guy spit it out! So I moved on. I focused on helping other people. I was good, until you dragged me back into this freak show and put everyone here at risk!

So my question is, does Hulk save Bruce Banner because of he likes him and has compassion for him? Or is it just for survival reasons, as once Bruce dies, Hulk will also die without the body?


5 Answers 5


The final scenes of The Age of Ultron show a self-controlled Hulk fleeing in a jet because they (Hulk and Banner) don't want to risk Black Widow's life in a dangerous relationship.

Banner says Hulk is "another guy" because when he is Hulk he cannot control his emotions and actions, but it seems both personalities share their memories and even being Hulk he/they can think what is the best for him/them. So it seems Hulk likes/despises Banner as much as Banner does.

  • 1
    Very good point made!
    – Sayan
    Commented Aug 25, 2015 at 10:44

Marvel Cinematic Universe Hulk has had very little character development, and even less actual dialog to which to justify any emotion. The current state of Banner/Hulk is purely self-preservation. MCU Hulk hasn't shown any emotion good or bad towards his other half, or signs that he dislikes being Banner for long times. MCU Hulk is essentially just the rage emotion.

Comic and Cartoon Banner/Hulk has gone through multiple versions of their relationships. Hulk at times is simply mindless rage, and other times a fully formed personality with independent thoughts and desires. Sometimes Hulk actually hates "puny banner" because Banner tries to lock the Hulk in. He doesn't take kindly to being kept in a cage, psychologically or physically speaking. Other times, Hulk and Banner work together.


Although various iterations of Hulk exist, the common denominator is that increased anger = increased strength.

During Age of Ultron, Iron Man attempts to reason with the beast whilst it is rampaging through Johannesburg. During these futile negotiations, he mentions Banner before quickly changing direction, realising he has angered Hulk (which isn't going to do him any favours):

Tony Stark: [in the Hulkbuster] Listen to me, that little witch is messing with your mind. You're stronger than her, you're smarter than her. You're Bruce Banner!

[Hulk roars and throws a car at Stark]

Tony Stark: Right, don't mention puny Banner...

We can infer from this that the MCU is tacitly acknowledging this as source of Hulk's strength through this reference to the comics, which means the very mention of Banner is enough to incite anger in Hulk, in any state of mind.

Without needing to go deeper, or anywhere near theoretical arguments, this is enough to assert that Hulk feels little other than animalistic contempt and resentment to Banner.

To those who interpreted Hulks last action self-solitude as something noble, I'd challenge you to the realisation that it was Hulk, not Banner that switches off the channel to Black Widow. He doesn't want to be Lullabye'd, because that introduces banner into the equation and allows him the right of response.

Hulk is doing nothing more than suppress the control of Banner, out of what he perceives to be Self-preservation. There is no guarantee that Banner will agree with the Hulk's decision, as (evidenced earlier in the film) he will have no recollection of the events as they transpired.

  • The face of Hulk in that scene shows sadness (Like thinking "I'd like to go back, but is not good for anyone I appreciate") , not anger or disdain ("I don't want to be controlled by a puny woman!"). Commented Aug 28, 2015 at 7:27

I think of the Hulk-Banner relationship like an inversion of our own mind's frontal cortex and mammalian hind-brain. The hind brain is like a simple, childish animal; it doesn't think very far ahead and is only really interested in itself and it's own wants and needs. It acts reflexively and without restraint.

The frontal-cortex (the bit where humanity resides) keeps the hind-brain in check, telling it that it really doesn't need that 10th beer, to go to bed because there's work tomorrow or to stop shouting because everyone is looking at you. Over-powering the hind-brain is an effort of will and often fails or becomes tired, so efforts to keep it in check can't be performed continuously.

Hulk is the impulsive, childish, animal brain that is kept in check by Banner's humanity. When Hulk takes over, he sees the brain-roles reversed, with the humanity taking the back seat. For a while, he has control (as much control as Banner, anyway). Both minds are aware of each other, recognise the need for each other and begrudgingly accept they would struggle to survive without one another. The reigns are not surrendered easily, but there is always knowledge that they will get back in the driving seat at some point.

I think Hulk likes Banner about as much as I like myself when I wake up with a hangover (Oh FFS! Why did I do that?! Never again...).


When we talk about Hulk we think about some extraterrestrial, mindless, angry (very angry indeed!) entity but the simple fact is if we see the guy as a simple innocent infant (yeah I know it's difficult but I mean just 'mentally infant') with extraordinary body size and physical capabilities he is just an ordinary soul stuck in another human being trying to survive and figure out himself and the world that surrounds him. Hulk can't experience emotions because he just wasn't made that way he just wants himself to survive which is only possible if Banner survives (Charles Darwin's theory of survival).

  • nice thought, however question remembers same, doest this simple innocent likes bruce or not.
    – Panther
    Commented Aug 25, 2015 at 5:10
  • Hulk can experience emotions...
    – cde
    Commented Aug 25, 2015 at 5:39
  • Maybe but even if he can it cannot make any difference because he is always overpowered by his anger and rage. Plus his speaking skills are poor (to put it mildly ;) Commented Aug 25, 2015 at 5:44

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