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Helping Hand, Iron Fist
Review And Media by Stu

Episode #4 - Helping Hand, Iron Fist
Original Airdate September 29, 1996

Bruce travels to LA in hopes of seeking Tony's help for a cure. When the Hulkbusters invade Stark Enterprises, Iron Man must fight off General Ross' army whilst holding an amnesia ridden Hulk at bay.

Credits
Screenplay By: Stewart St. John
Directed By: Ernesto Lopez
Music By: ADD MUSIC
Animation By: ADD ANIMATION
Guest Starring: gs: Robert Hayes as Iron Man/Tony Stark, Dorian Harewood as War Machine/James Rhodes, Tom Kane as HOMER, Neil McDonough as Bruce Banner, Lou Ferringo as Hulk, John Vernon as Thunderbolt Ross, Luke Perry as Rick Jones.


Review: Hulk has always had good success with team ups, and this episode was the best this underrated show had to offer. It was good to see they hadn't forgotten about Hulk's appearance on Iron Man, and that Tony and Bruce are friends. It was also revealed that Stark even paid for the gamma bomb that created Banner's alter ego.

The direction in this episode was outstanding. Many cool shots of both Iron Man and War Machine shooting down General Ross and Agent Gabriel's Hulk busters. I'm glad they kept the Iron Man design from the second season of his show; as it was by far the coolest armour Iron Man has ever worn. Bringing War Machine and H.O.M.E.R along was nice too. It felt like an episode of Iron Man, which was by all rights a brilliant cartoon that ended far too quickly. This episode really does feel like an episode of Iron Man, whilst maintaining Bannerís presence. Itís an episode with a great mix of both worlds.

The friendship theme this episode had going for it was surprisingly good, seeing as how a lot of shows lay it on too thick and you think you're watching Care Bears. This show was always good with friendships, Hulk and Rick, Bruce and Rick etc; it played them out well, and developed the characters nicely. Unfortunately, when She Hulk came around in season two, all of that went downhill, and gave a very mediocre second season.

Hulkís amnesia was also played pretty well. Amnesia is either a very effective tool in developing a character, or a complete waste of time that bores most viewers to tear. It served its purpose here, mainly expanding on the friendship between Rick and Hulk.

Overall, this episode is possibly the best-animated team up episode Marvel ever did in any of their shows. And címon, you know everyone loves the Iron Man guitar riff.


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