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Lou Ferrigno Claims His Hulk Was the Fittest Superhero Body of All Time

Lou Ferrigno reminds fans that his Hulk in The Incredible Hulk TV show didn't have help from CGI or costumes. Marvel legends Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are credited with creating The Incredible Hulk, who made his first comic book appearance way back in 1962.

The origin story of The Incredible Hulk is of course a classic example. Scientist Bruce Banner is a regular-sized weakling with a big brain who is exposed to gamma rays and develops an alter ego: a hulking green giant who emerges whenever Banner becomes angry. The Hulk would arrive on movie screens in 2003 with Eric Bana in the role of Banner, then would return in 2008 with Ed Norton replacing Bana. But of course nowadays the role of Banner/The Hulk is most associated with Mark Ruffalo, who played the character in the Avengers movies, as well as Captain America: Civil War and Thor: Ragnarok. There is a whole generation however who, when they think of The Hulk, may first think of the classic TV series starring Bill Bixby as Banner and bodybuilder Ferrigno as his massive green other self. Featuring the immortal “Lonely Man Theme” closing titles music, the show ran from 1977 to 1982 and remains a beloved vintage TV title.

Related: Marvel Gives Smart Hulk's Comic Name To Loki

Given the many different iterations of The Hulk over the years, it’s easy for a debate to arise over who gave the definitive portrayal of the classic Marvel character. For his part, Ferrigno thinks he has an advantage over other Hulks and indeed other Marvel movie superheroes in general. In a recent tweet, Ferrigno laid out his case for why his portrayal of the Hulk should be given special consideration. See his tweet in the space below:

Ferrigno much like Arnold Schwarzenegger first gained fame as a professional bodybuilder and actually appeared alongside Schwarzenegger in the classic documentary Pumping Iron. The Incredible Hulk was Ferrigno’s first acting gig, and he would follow it up with roles in everything from the ‘80s Hercules films to shows like The Fall Guy, Night Court, Amazing Stories and Reno 911!. The MCU paid homage to Ferrigno’s Hulk contribution by using his voice in The Avengers and Thor: Ragnarok (though he was uncredited).

Of course Ferrigno has a point when he notes that today’s superhero movies employ CGI and padded costumes to make their characters look as buff as possible (the Hulk obviously is a particularly extreme case of CGI bodybuilding as the character’s dimensions are exaggerated far beyond human limits). And it’s clear the actor is very proud of the hard work he put in back in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s to give himself a Hulk-like body without the aid of modern day computer graphics. That being said, many of today’s movie actors also put in a lot of work to appear buff (Chris Hemsworth looks plenty jacked without the aid of CGI), and certainly Ferrigno doesn’t mean to put down their efforts. .

At the end of the day what matters most with superhero movies and TV shows is the effect that is achieved on-screen. There’s no doubt that today’s superhero works create product that many millions of people love, however they arrive at the end result. And Ferrigno’s The Incredible Hulk show certainly made a lot of people happy in its day and obviously still has its fans. Of course no one will deny the hard work Ferrigno put in to make himself look like a credible Hulk. But it’s undeniable that the MCU’s Hulk is beloved too, even if it’s computer animators doing all the heavy lifting.

More: Avengers: Endgame's Hulk Arc Can Explain Why She-Hulk Exists

Source: Lou Ferrigno/Twitter

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