The Hulk usually quits the Avengers in the second mission. That goes back to the original comic series when he quit the team in the second issue. But he’s still in the opening credits for this animated series, and his biggest enemy has some plans.
Also, there are some Masters of Evil. Jimmy and Tom have some thoughts on these episodes below.
“Gamma World” Parts One and Two
The Leader never left the Cube. He has a plan. Can the Avengers foil it?
jimmy: Na na na na na na na na Leader!
tomk: Defeated by the combined might of Hawkeye and the Hulk.
jimmy: Mostly Hawkeye. And Banner.
tomk: Yeah. Who needs the Hulk against the Absorbing Man or the Abomination?
jimmy: Speaking of the Absorbing Man. I get he absorbed Mjolnir…but does that give him the ability to morph his hands into hammers?
tomk: He was seen morphing his body before with other substances. Remember how he disguised himself as a wall?
jimmy: Precedence established.
tomk: Of course, only Thor can control that hammer. Stupid Absorbing Man…
jimmy: This might have come up before, but would he absorb everything? Including the enchantment?
tomk: Well, Thor sure believed so.
jimmy: And that’s all that mattered.
tomk: Enough to maybe fool the Absorbing Man.
jimmy: That’s the only one he needed to.
tomk: He might have been in more trouble if it was the Wrecking Crew or the U-Foes.
jimmy: And gamma charged ones at that.
tomk: One thing this show did differently was change the origins of the Wrecking Crew and Absorbing Man to make them gamma powered instead of Asgardian magic powered.
jimmy: Yeah, I wasn’t sure if they were already empowered and just boosted by the Leader’s gamma rays.
tomk: They were sent to the Cube by SHIELD, and only gamma monsters went there.
jimmy: There you go.
tomk: So, why does gamma radiation make people with animal code names into monster versions of those animals?
jimmy: Because that’s what was in the script?
You win another round, Jimmy.
tomk: Don’t let it go to your head. If it swells up too much, you may rival the Leader for the size of your noggin.
jimmy: Is that possible?
tomk: Are you asking me if it is possible for gamma radiation or a lack of humility to give you a giant cranium?
tomk: What do you think?
jimmy: Guess I’ll eat this bowl of Gamma-O’s and find out.
tomk: Um, be careful of the jagged metal O.
jimmy: …too late.
tomk: Well, you may not gain superpowers, but you do get a trip to the hospital.
jimmy: Yeah, the whole “super powers from radiation” usually doesn’t work out in real life.
tomk: So that radioactive hamster bite is not why Watson has been chewing on chunks of wood for the past month?
jimmy: No. Some guys are just jerks.
tomk: Jerks with quirks apparently.
jimmy: Jerks with quirks. I like it.
tomk: The Leader is a jerk, but he has no quirks.
I mean, he just decided he has to be “the Leader” because he has a giant head or something.
jimmy: He’s so smart, yet, couldn’t think up a better name for himself than “The Leader”?
tomk: It’s more of a title than a name. You know like how they say you should dress for the job you want and not the job you have.
jimmy: What if the job I want is nude hot dog salesman?
tomk: That sounds like a potential disaster waiting to happen. Besides, Watson wants that job and he wants to hold it outside the local gentleman’s only club.
jimmy: Maybe we should get back to talking about the Avengers…
tomk: That’s a good idea. You should run for mayor.
jimmy: My head’s not nearly hamburger shaped enough for that.
tomk: But Gamma Town is looking for new, pardon the pun, leadership.
jimmy: Sounds like a job for Samson.
tomk: Yeah. He’s useful.
jimmy: More useful than me.
tomk: You really need more confidence in yourself.
jimmy: I agree. And green hair apparently.
tomk: That’s not recommended for everyone.
tomk: I mean, you can if you want it.
It can’t look any worse than when the Moose did it.
jimmy: He only did his antlers.
tomk: It was bad enough. Green dye went everywhere before it dried.
jimmy: And he kept referring to it as his “Hulk Rack”.
tomk: The Moose talks?
jimmy: In his own way.
tomk: I see. Does it help when the Leader tries to turn everyone including puppy dogs and babies into Hulks?
jimmy: It doesn’t help the puppy dogs.
tomk: Well, you have a good point there.
jimmy: I rest my case.
tomk: You rest your case?
jimmy: Uh…case dismissed?
tomk: I figured you thought it was just a figure of speech. Case closed.
tomk: And you probably know better than to go into any conflict with a gamma-powered geniuses to leave the Hulk behind.
jimmy: I do know better than that.
tomk: You also probably know the best way to get Banner out is to make the Hulk laugh.
jimmy: That I did not know. But it was very effective.
tomk: Also, Hawkeye does not like being called “Cupid”.
jimmy: That I didn’t know, but was easy to guess.
tomk: Also, one of those mutated SHIELD agents turned into the Harpy.
jimmy: That’s a deep cut nod.
tomk: This show does that sometimes.
jimmy: Shows the creators have a deep understanding and caring of the source material.
tomk: They do as near as I can make out. It’s what makes this an enjoyable show.
jimmy: Yeah, no Avengers Knife Fight episodes here.
tomk: That’s really more of a Justice League thing.
jimmy: Either way, we don’t need that around here.
tomk: They can’t really show a knife fight on a kids show.
jimmy: What can they show?
tomk: They can threaten but no blood!
jimmy: Or blast the Hulk with everything short of a nuke.
tomk: He’ll just walk it off.
jimmy: Hopefully he doesn’t start laughing just before it hits him.
tomk: Bombs aren’t as funny as a threat from Hawkeye.
jimmy: That’s probably true.
tomk: And you should be nice to Hawkeye. He took down a whole HYDRA cell and Black Widow by himself.
jimmy: The only time the Avengers win anything is when Hawkeye’s around.
tomk: Then how did they win the episodes where he was still a wanted criminal?
tomk: Not skill or talent?
jimmy: Sure. But mostly luck.
tomk: Well, I guess I am lucky to have you explain things to me.
jimmy: I try my best.
tomk: Maybe next time you can explain to Iron Man they should have brought the Hulk with them.
jimmy: He should have known that. Maybe Tony’s not so smart.
tomk: Well, Steve is a better leader. Hank is possibly a better scientist. Janet has far better social skills. Thor has more power. T’Challa is probably smarter.
Why is Tony in charge again?
tomk: It might be something else.
jimmy: Typo. I meant “Buck?”
jimmy: He’d get the job done.
tomk: Yeah, and he just has a hand drill.
Plus, he’s Canadian.
jimmy: That’s all you need.
tomk: And maybe a gamma vaccine.
jimmy: Funny they can cure those guys in two seconds, but not the Hulk.
tomk: He had a much stronger dose.
jimmy: Give him a much stronger vaccine.
tomk: Banner also said that if you wait too long, it becomes permanent.
jimmy: And he be smart.
tomk: Plus, he’s been in Hulk form for ages.
jimmy: Except when he made those trips to the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal.
tomk: I wouldn’t know anything about Canadian comedy celebrations.
jimmy: Banner does.
tomk: That explains what he was doing that far north.
jimmy: He needed a break after this:
tomk: I figured he was visiting friends.
jimmy: You can’t spend too much time with those guys.
tomk: They do have a lot of beer.
jimmy: Not for the Hulk.
tomk: Oh, is it established somewhere the Hulk can’t get drunk?
jimmy: I saw that on a show recently.
tomk: Some sort of serious legal drama no doubt.
jimmy: Very serious.
tomk: Surely it can’t be that serious.
jimmy: It’s not. And don’t call me Shirley.
tomk: And with that, the Hulk turns back into Banner in the Gabbing Geek lobby.
jimmy: Hopefully before he has to take the stairs.
tomk: He can fit in the elevator now.
jimmy: Even better.
tomk: Well, that takes care of the visitors. It’s probably lucky for the Leader all those Hulk people were listening to him. If they all went nuts and started smashing everything in sight, there would have been some major problems.
jimmy: They don’t call him The Leader for nothing.
tomk: I mostly call him the Question.
As in, I have so many questions about that guy.
jimmy: And maybe another reason?
tomk: He does seem a bit reanimated.
jimmy: He better ratchet it up a bit.
tomk: I don’t suppose you have anything else to add?
jimmy: Probably not. I struggled to get that last Jeffrey Combs pun.
tomk: In that case, there are some nasty Masters to worry about.
jimmy: I assume that is not about golf. Or puppets.
tomk: Would you rather it was?
jimmy: I didn’t, but that’s intriguing.
tomk: How about some Masters of Evil instead?
jimmy: Sure. That’ll work.
tomk: Then the Avengers better be glad Hawkeye signed up since you said they can’t win without him.
“Masters of Evil”
Baron Zemo leads his team against the Avengers, and it may all come down to Hawkeye and Black Panther to save the day!
jimmy: Avengers with Hawkeye FTW!
tomk: So…now you like Hawkeye?
jimmy: I disliked Hawkeye?
tomk: I thought you were the president and founder of the Anti-Hawkeye Society.
Unless that was the Anti-Hawkman Society…
jimmy: I have no problem with either Hawk person.
jimmy: He was the best one!
tomk: He’s the real lynchpin to any team.
jimmy: MASH never lost with him.
tomk: I dunno. That show ran longer than the actual war.
jimmy: Once he left, they lost it.
tomk: Sounds like an #EvilWesley situation.
jimmy: But less evil. And less Wesley.
tomk: So, he’s not the guy under the Zemo mask?
jimmy: Ohhh….that’s quite possible.
tomk: Regardless, credit where it’s due: Hank turned into a giant and didn’t get his head handed to him.
jimmy: Yeah…he showed you!
tomk: Like J’onn J’onnz showed you when he wasn’t knocked unconscious?
tomk: That said, this may be the first time some captured heroes used the “we were really distracting you from this other guy” bit, but they actually were distracting Zemo’s crew from this other guy.
jimmy: They used that bit after the whole “we got our asses handed to us” bit.
tomk: That’s usually Hank’s job.
jimmy: Not this time. And even after Zemo warned that Hank was the Avenger they had to most worry about.
tomk: It’s like they knew the audience would underestimate Hank or assume Clint and the Panther would save the day by themselves.
jimmy: It sure looked like the latter.
tomk: Don’t we expect the Panther to be that good?
jimmy: Especially teamed up with Hawkeye.
tomk: I mean, those guys know how to shut off magic bonds and open a portal to the lands of the Frost Giants, right?
tomk: Snow-covered Hulks are the angriest Hulks.
jimmy: There’s angrier, but they can’t show them on a Saturday morning cartoon.
tomk: You didn’t want to see Hulk saves Santa?
jimmy: Hulk saving Santa? What’s next? The Tick vs Santa?
tomk: That would be silly.
jimmy: And awesome.
tomk: You’ll have to settle for Thor vs Omnipotus, Devourer of Worlds.
jimmy: It’s a Yule tide!
tomk: Sometimes Santa needs rescuing. Sometimes we need to be rescued from Santa.
jimmy: God of Thunder, I wish that was real.
tomk: It is if you believe hard enough.
jimmy: I believe!
tomk: Check under your seat. It could be a Festivus miracle.
jimmy: Hulk would do great at the feats of strength.
tomk: Iron Man probably has a spare pole.
And Simon probably does well at the airing of grievances.
jimmy: “I got a lot of problems with you Avengers, and now you’re gonna hear about it!”
tomk: He’s a good man. Hank said so, and he didn’t disagree.
jimmy: Would you if someone told you that?
tomk: Is that someone being sarcastic? Or Watson?
jimmy: Watson wouldn’t say that, even in sarcasm.
tomk: Not even to Lisa?
jimmy: Especially not to Lisa. But especially not to you.
tomk: Huh. Well, Simon is a bad guy for now. And since this show never got a third season, he won’t get to reform.
jimmy: Poor Wonder Man.
tomk: Maybe he can do a movie like Wonder Man 1985.
jimmy: It couldn’t be worse than Wonder Woman 1984.
tomk: Sure it could.
jimmy: Still haven’t seen that…
tomk: Sure you have. You just blocked it out.
tomk: Also possible that the Masters didn’t have that good a plan. No wonder Zola stayed behind to mix stuff in test tubes.
jimmy: Plus the old trope where villain A is going to kill hero H and villain Z says “no, we’ll kill him later” for reasons, and of course that time never comes.
tomk: Lousy Villain Z. If he just killed them as they were captured, maybe he wouldn’t need to crash on Zola’s couch.
jimmy: Then we wouldn’t have a show, but…right?!?
tomk: He could get his own place, Jimmy.
tomk: His title is “Baron,” not “Freeloader.”
jimmy: That does have a better ring to it.
tomk: No one would follow Freeloader Zemo.
jimmy: He wouldn’t stand up to Abomination.
tomk: Who apparently needs to brush his teeth.
jimmy: Do bad guys have good dental hygiene? Seems like flossing wouldn’t be considered very “evil”.
tomk: The Abomination seems to have a lot of fangs. Flossing might not be that tough if his teeth are spread apart enough.
tomk: A nodding Robert Redford is always a good sign.
jimmy: Uh, yeah.
tomk: Jeremiah Johnson
jimmy: Uh, yeah.
tomk: Jimmy, your lack of knowledge on where popular memes come from is showing. I know stuff because I know a guy who explains the things the kids are into for me.
jimmy: That’s Saved by the Bell, right?
jimmy: Street Fighter?
tomk: That’s more of Hawkeye’s thing, fighting in the streets.
jimmy: Or Mick Jagger’s.
tomk: That’s for Dancing.
We’re both right.
jimmy: That’s because we both rock and/or roll.
tomk: And we both don’t become vigilantes after a bad experience with street crime like so many Avengers (probably) do.
jimmy: Great show.
tomk: And it has little to do with the Avengers or the Masters of Evil.
jimmy: That’s true.
tomk: Still, all that build up and the Avengers handled the Masters without too much trouble.
jimmy: After they were easily defeated.
tomk: Well, it helps when Hank punts the biggest one out a window.
jimmy: Zemo was right to fear him as the greatest Avenger.
tomk: Take that, everyone else!
tomk: The Judges are drunk again.
jimmy: Maybe that’s why they say “yes” so much.
tomk: That or someone has some dirt on them. Someone like Zemo or Watson (leader of the Masters of Douchery).
jimmy: Makes sense. Especially the latter.
tomk: Well, this has gone in weird directions. Anything to add about the episode itself, or is it time to move on and maybe bring in some more recognizable characters? Like, maybe another Captain.
jimmy: Captain Hook? Captain Canuck? Captain Tennille?
tomk: Captain Kangaroo. Possibly with Mr. Moose.
jimmy: I’ll get the cigarettes.
tomk: Those are bad for you. I think it may be a different captain anyway. And there are no flowers on the wall. That might both some, is all.
jimmy: Only one way to find out which Captain then…
tomk: Sure. Ready?
jimmy: More then you’d guess.
NEXT: Tom and Jimmy will be back with more cartoon chat soon with the episodes “459” and “Widow’s Sting”.
Sweet Home “Episode Five”
Noteworthy Issues: The Amazing Spider-Man #62 (July, 1968)
The X-Files “Home”