Even with the success of “Batman” a year prior, director Bill Bixby had a hard time accumulating the budget and network support for what became the final hurrah for the famed seventies series. Apparently “Death” was supposed to be a vehicle for Iron Man and She-Hulk, but the budget just didn’t allow for it. Not to mention around this time Bill Bixby received the unfortunate news that he had prostate cancer, so “Death” was ultimately a swan song for the series as a whole. It’s a mixed blessing, though, since the budget allows for this final film to give the Hulk what is a bittersweet finale. The movie isn’t at all perfect, and completely meanders in the middle of the film, but overall the final scene paired with the classic theme song is gripping and a great testament to Bill Bixby’s commitment as an actor before his untimely death.
It’s been a while since David Banner has been on the road and he’s now looking for new lodgings in New York (aka Canada) under the guise of David Belson. After an incident involving a pair of jewel thieves on a train attacking a woman, David is forced to invoke the monster of the Hulk, which results in unfortunate casualties. After wreaking havoc as the green monster, David is arrested and is shocked to learn the women he saved on the train from the robbers is claiming David attacked her. He’s also being blamed for the unfortunate shooting of an elderly man during the attack. Realizing the pair of criminals were under the pay of local crime boss Wilson Fisk, David tries to clear his name along with his new attorney Matt Murdock. Little does David know that Matt is a vigilante by night known as Daredevil.
Even after “Superman: The Movie” and its somewhat successful franchise, the idea of turning comic books in to movies or a TV show was a rare prospect. Studios considered it a gamble as then comic books were considered a kids medium, so it was an anomaly for something like the Incredible Hulk to be adapted in to a successful drama that stayed in syndication for a long time. Six years after the end of the series, Bill Bixby returns to the role of David Banner, a scientist now living in a seaside town with his girlfriend. He’s mostly lived a quiet life and is helping to create a machine that can decay gamma radiation. Though he’s helping the local lab to create it, he’s also hoping to use it as a means of killing the hulk and end his curse.