Planet Hulk (2010, 81 minutes)
Source Material: I really, really love this story. Admittedly conceived as a workaround for The Hulk not being in Civil War but it worked. This gave the Hulk a nice, grand story that put him out of his element. The film more or less follows the story with changes due to legal issues, such as Beta Ray Bill put in the Silver surfer’s role and characters shown in shadows. It also somehow ends before the planet gets destroyed and Hulk comes home. Not a good ending.
Animation: Strong. It’s still a bit too TV for my tastes but the scenery looks great and the characters look good. The action is at least better than in Ultimate Avengers. Honestly this at least feels like they looked at the comics and tried to mimic them.
Script: Greg Johnson, who did a superb job on Doctor Strange, returned for this and once more showed he gets comics. Aside from the baffling happy ending, which I suspect was forced on him because of lack of rights to do World War Hulk, this is very good. It hits all the needed beats of the source while neatly condensing it into an 81 minute runtime. This is only marginally longer than a normal DTV CBM but felt much bigger as it should.
Voice Acting: Marvel’s tendency to hire anonymous voices works here. These aren’t iconic characters–most of them died after this arc–so it would be distracting to hear familiar voices. Rick Wasserman is a fine Hulk, capturing the smarter but still a brute version. I liked the actors playing his allies too, most Marvel TV vets.
Final Verdict: I rented this from Redbox when I first watched it. That sounds right so this is indeed a 3. It definitely feels more like at at home film but a fun one. It certainly suggests Marvel could’ve done more of these arcs as animated films. (The Disney deal ended these.)