Marvel fans have just realised the one thing about Smart Hulk that makes no sense.
Mark Ruffalo returns in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, a new Disney Plus series that reintroduces Bruce Banner in his Smart Hulk form. Smart Hulk — not a name Bruce chose for himself — is the perfect combination of brains and brawn, with Banner retaining his personality while gaining the benefits of the Hulk’s indestructible big green body.
That’s all well and good, but fans are only now realising one thing about him makes no sense. Specifically, why does he require glasses? Smart Hulk is seen wearing glasses when he gets to work in both Endgame and the pilot episode of She-Hulk. However, as user adamfish1981 pointed out on the r/MarvelStudios subreddit, this does not fit with everything we know about Hulk’s physiology.
Banner’s Hulk form is known to heal almost any wound or infirmity. In The Avengers, for example, Bruce recalled trying to kill himself but Hulk simply spit out the bullet. His arm was obviously badly injured as a result of his use of the Infinity Gauntlet in Endgame, but even that was eventually healed in She-Hulk thanks to cousin Jennifer’s super-blood. As a result, Hulk should have perfect vision.
So, why the spectacles? Marvel has made no attempt to explain it, so we’re left to speculate that, while Smart Hulk may not require them, Bruce continues to use them out of habit. If he were in his human form, he would put on his glasses to concentrate on his work, so he has simply continued to do so even though it is not strictly necessary.
The real reason, of course, is that Hulk in glasses is a simple visual cue to inform the audience that we’re watching Smart Hulk, not regular Hulk. Still, it’s not difficult to imagine Tatiana Maslany’s Jen making fun of her brother’s useless glasses in a future episode. You just wear them because you think they make you look smart, Bruce.