When I was 4 we lived 25 miles outside Bracebridge in the Muskoka Lakes area. I live in a tiny hamlet called Milford bay – population, somewhere around 45. We had a corner store.
When my dad would drive us the 25 miles to Bracebridge, I would rubberneck out the window and let my imagination run wild.
We would pass the swamp, where prehistoric monsters and giant snapping turtles lay in wait beneath the surface. There was an old tree fort suspended in a half dead tree in a marshy area that must have been dry at one point in the past. I always wondered what kind of person would build a tree fort in a monster infested swamp. Then one day I realized, another monster, of course. I felt like Sherlock Holmes after figuring that out.
Then there was the giant rock cut. One mile in length, with pink, vertical walls about a thousand feet high (I didn’t judge height very well when I was that age.) it felt like we were passing through a tunnel into another time.
Then there was my favorite part – the sand pits. Set back from highway 118 west, the sand pits looked like a rugged, prehistoric wasteland where nothing could survive. Boy, did I strain my eyes to see if something could be alive in there. Then one day I saw something moving in the trees behind the sand pits and I knew instantly, not what, but who, it was.
That’s right, I saw the hulk, camouflaged amongst the trees. Sure, I admit I didn’t see him clearly, but I did see him. And from that moment on, every time we would drive past that patch of land I would freak out in the back seat of my dad’s car, screaming, “Hulk land! Hulk Land!” I kind of became obsessed with the Hulk after that. Thanks, Marvel. Thanks Jack Kirby. No I mean it. Thanks.
Because the Hulk is still my favorite. Yes, he’s the strongest there is. He’s also the most awesome. And now, with The Age of Ultron coming out soon, there’s going to be some pretty cool Hulk action, I can feel it. Lou Ferrigno’s Hulk was good for its day. Ange Lee/Eric Bana’s Hulk? Sure, better than the rest of the movie. Edward Norton’s Hulk? Better, but a little to GQ for my taste. That hair looked pretty coiffed and he was a little lean. Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk? Yeah. Now we’re getting somewhere.
The funny thing is, Iron Man, The Hulk, and Daredevil were in my top favorite comic characters growing up. Now they are all the rage and I couldn’t be happier. Rounding out my list were a collection of characters that I feel a little less optimistic about seeing on the big screen anytime soon.
Metamorpho, The Metal Men, Namor, and Magnus Robot Fighter, Man Thing, The Thing, and Richie Rich. Yeah, a little weird for a superhero list but what can I say? As for super villains, Doctor Doom, Wilson Fisk, Doctor Octopus, Lex Luthor were tops. (Note: These were all from my pre-high school days. After high school my list expanded)
Bottom line is, I can’t wait for Age of Ultron. My prediction? Hulk will Smash!