Synopsis for “Banished to Outer Space”
While the Hulk spends the night time hours locked inside of his alter ego Bruce Banner’s fortified cave, Rick Jones is summoned to the office of General “Thunderbolt” Ross. Ross tells Rick that they need to test fly an experimental rocket ship and that only the Hulk has a chance of withstanding the titanic g-forces. Knowing that Jones is closely connected to the Hulk, he punctuates his request with the knowledge that the Hulk will be contributing to the country’s national security.
Rick feels that he owes it to his country to do what he can, though he regrets that the cost of such patriotism is the betrayal of the Hulk. Rick releases the Hulk from the sanctuary cave, and the Hulk begins chasing him. He lure the Hulk to the launchpad of the rocket ship and begins scaling the gangplank. He tricks the Hulk into entering the capsule, at which point, General Ross launches it into outer space. As he returns to the army base, Rick overhears Ross celebrating the fact that they are now rid of the Hulk forever. It was all a trick. Frustrated beyond measure, Rick begins randomly activating knobs and switches on the rocket’s control panel.
In outer space, the rocket passes through a radiation storm and the Hulk is bathed in a massive dose of powerful celestial energy. The power surge arcs downward back towards Earth, striking Rick Jones. Rick appears to be fine, but cannot explain the sudden upsurge of energy. As night turns to day, the space capsule detaches from the fuselage of the ship and plummets back towards Earth. Rick races out to the impact sight, fearful that the crash may have killed Bruce Banner. It is not Banner who emerges from the ship however, but the incredible Hulk. Rick doesn’t understand how Banner is still the Hulk even though it is now daytime. The Hulk begins chasing Rick Jones, seeking to avenge himself against Rick’s betrayal. Rick runs and in a desperate bid to save his own life, orders the Hulk to stop. Miraculously, the Hulk obeys his commands. Rick now realizes that the energy surge he felt back at the desert base somehow created a connection between himself and the Hulk. He orders the Hulk to bring him back to his cabin and watch over him so he can get some sleep.
While Rick is asleep however, he loses his control over the Hulk. The Hulk breaks through the wall of the cabin and goes on a rampage in a nearby town. Rick catches up to him and orders him to take him to the sanctuary cave. There, Rick instructs the Hulk to enter the steel cell and secures the door behind him. Tired, Rick slumps to the floor on the other side of the door. He refuses to fall asleep however, less the Hulk goes berserk and breaks free.
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