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‘What If’ Recasts Edward Norton in ‘The Incredible Hulk’ With Mark Ruffalo

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It’s not a huge surprise that Marvel Studios wouldn’t bring Edward Norton back to play Bruce Banner in this week’s episode of What If…? But it’s still a bit of a swerve, as the show walks through the first phase of Marvel’s movies, and recasts scenes previously played by Norton in the much maligned 2008 movie The Incredible Hulk with the actor who replaced him: Mark Ruffalo.

Here’s the setup, in case you’re confused (and it is a little confusing). In the episode, we get to see a loose adaptation of Marvel’s Phase One movies (Iron Man 2 through The Avengers, specifically) through the lens of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). However, things take a dark turn immediately as Iron Man mysteriously dies when Black Widow tries to cure him of palladium poisoning. The deaths continue to build with the murder of Thor, then Hawkeye.

Black Widow is on the run, and decides to head and talk to someone not involved in S.H.I.E.L.D.: Betty Ross, aka Bruce Banner’s on and off again girlfriend. While interrogating her, Black Widow is tasked to find the Hulk by Fury… Only he’s already there, hiding in the same lab where Widow and Betty are talking.

And what follows is a scene straight out of The Incredible Hulk, with a few big changes. Widow and Banner run to a glass encased bridge. General “Thunderbolt” Ross (William Hurt) goes to take down the Hulk. And something gets shot at Banner, causing him to Hulk out and attack the army. Only unlike in the movie where smoke-bombs were shot at Banner, here he actually gets shot in the arm (it later turns out to be Hank Pym, played by Michael Douglas, who is killing the Avengers as revenge for the death of his daughter), and then later explodes. It’s pretty gross.

Anyway, back to the recasting of it all. It isn’t a huge change from Norton to Ruffalo here, and it’s not like it’s a live-action scene. You could even excuse the event as “well it’s another universe in the multiverse where Ruffalo was always Bruce Banner.” But it does seem like part of a more active effort on Marvel Studios to reclaim The Incredible Hulk as a part of Marvel Cinematic Universe canon.

Caveat here: the movie was always part of canon, technically; it’s just in a weird place, financially. Way back over a decade ago, Marvel wasn’t the dominant cultural force it is now, and had previously sold rights to most of its top tier characters to various movie studios. So when it came time to produce movies themselves, most of them were co-productions, or co-distribution deals. That includes The Incredible Hulk, which was a Universal movie (the rest of Phase One was distributed by Paramount, until Disney fully bought out the rights). Reports on where the rights for a Hulk movie lie are murky and conflicting at best, so we won’t run all that down (seriously, that’s another whole article entirely), but the Louis Leterrier directed movie has always felt like the odd man out in the MCU canon.

There have been references before, mind you. After Norton parted ways with Marvel, and Ruffalo (the original first choice for the role) was brought in to replace him for The Avengers, Banner’s past wasn’t ignored completely. Footage from the movies — mostly Hulk fights — has been used before, and the Hulk’s climactic battle with Abomination (Tim Roth) in Harlem has been used as fodder for jokes. The biggest tie-in to canon was Hurt returning as Ross for Captain America: Civil War, and he’s since proved to be a go-to baddie in other movies like Black Widow.

But What If…?, despite being animated, is the most time we’ve spent in the timeline of The Incredible Hulk in the MCU since 2008, and having Ruffalo there instead of Norton shows a willingness on Marvel’s part to re-canonize the events of the movie. Add in that Roth (or at least a CGI monster) will be showing up as Abomination in September’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and again on Disney+’s She-Hulk series, and there’s a sense that perhaps other dangling plot-lines from the movie like Tim Blake Nelson’s villainous Leader, and perhaps even the missing Betty Ross (Liv Tyler) could be somewhere on the horizon.

Or perhaps this was just another universe in the multiverse where Ruffalo was always Bruce Banner. Either way.

New episodes of What If…? stream every Wednesday on Disney+.

Stream What If…? on Disney+

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What Time Will ‘Riverdale’ Season 6 Be on Netflix?

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The season finale of Riverdale aired in late July on The CW. Notice we said season finale? Thankfully, the beloved series will return for a seventh season, but, unfortunately, Season 7 will be the final installment of Riverdale.

If you already streamed the current season, make sure to read Alex Zalben’s interview with Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa on Decider. If you’re waiting to binge Season 6 on Netflix, well, you better clear your calendar because all 22 episodes are about to drop on the streamer. What time will the sixth season of Riverdale debut on Netflix? What time does Netflix release shows? Here’s everything you need to know.

WHEN IS THE RIVERDALE SEASON 6 NETFLIX RELEASE DATE?

Riverdale Season 6 premieres Sunday, August 7 on Netflix.

HOW MANY EPISODES ARE IN RIVERDALE SEASON 6?

The sixth season of Riverdale consists of 22 episodes.

WHAT TIME DOES NETFLIX RELEASE NEW SHOWS?

Netflix releases new episodes at 3:00 a.m. ET/12:00 a.m. PT.

WHAT TIME WILL RIVERDALE SEASON 6 BE ON NETFLIX?

Netflix is based out of California, so Riverdale Season 6 will be available to stream at 12:00 a.m. Pacific Standard Time (3:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time) beginning Sunday, August 7. If the clock strikes 12:00 (or 3:00 a.m. for folks on the East Coast) and you don’t see the new episodes, give it a moment, hit refresh, and then enjoy the show!

WILL THERE BE A SEASON 7 OF RIVERDALE?

Yes! Decider recently covered that very topic.

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Actress Anne Heche Suffers Severe Burns After Crashing Car Into Los Angeles Home

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Actress Anne Heche, known for her roles in such films as Donnie Brasco, Volcano and I Know What You Did Last Summer, was involved in a fiery car crash in the Mar Vista area of Los Angeles on Friday.

According to TMZ, Heche was driving a blue Mini Cooper and had first crashed into the garage of an apartment complex. Residents of the apartment complex tried to get her out of the vehicle but she backed up and sped off.

Footage of Heche speeding down the streets of her neighborhood had been obtained by TMZ as well as her initial encounter at the apartment complex.

In the first clip, you can hear her car crash towards the end. It has been reported that the actress crashed into someone’s home, causing her vehicle and the house to erupt into flames. Heche suffered severe burns and was resisting being taken away in a stretcher. You can also view footage of this via the TMZ article.

It has not been confirmed whether alcohol has been involved in the incident since her condition prevents doctors from performing any tests to determine if she was driving under the influence. She is currently intubated in the hospital but expected to live.

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These are the vulgar license-plate requests the DMV has rejected

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Stay CL4SSY, New York!

The state Department of Motor Vehicles nixed 3,752 requests for vanity license plates in the last three years because it deemed them too raunchy, radical or simply ridiculous.

New York’s personalized plates go for $60 initially, and then $31.25 annually for renewal. You can get any plate as long as no one else has it and it’s not offensive.

Odds are a request for a plate that marks a wedding anniversary or shows your allegiance to a team — like METS86 — will pass muster with the DMV gatekeepers.

Vulgarity won’t get you to first base.

So plates with the phrase LFGM — the acronym for Pete Alonso’s “Let’s F–king Go Mets” rallying cry — did not make the cut.

And you won’t see anyone driving around with the custom plates MILFDAD, AS5M4N and WLHUNG.

Crude meanings such as “MILFDAD” are unacceptable by the DMV.
Crude meanings such as “MILFDAD” are unacceptable by the DMV.
New York DMV
NYC123
New York state Department of Motor Vehicles denied more than 3.5 thousand requests for license plates deemed inappropriate.
New York DMV
“AS5M4N” was rejected for referring to “Ass man.”
“AS5M4N” was rejected for referring to “Ass man.”
New York DMV

The DMV also put NICEBUNS, FATFANNY, GOTAPOOP and BENDOVER in the rear-view mirror.

One player unsuccessfully tried to score the plate YESDADDY, to no avail.

The DMV also shot down such dark requests as DEADGIRL, GENOC1DE, S8TAN, DETONATE and MURDERM3.

“SUM8ITCH” is not allowed.
“SUM8ITCH” is not allowed.
New York DMV
The DMV thoroughly nixed a request for “CNNLIES.”
The DMV thoroughly nixed a request for “CNNLIES.”
New York DMV
BOOBIE is prohibited.
BOOBIE is prohibited.
New York DMV

Getting political is a dead end too — FJOEBIDN, FDTRUMP and CNNLIES were nixed.

LUDEDUDE, NARCO, GOT METH and BLUNT also went up in smoke.

Staten Island attorney Bill Dertinger said his blue 1995 Jaguar SJS was tagged with ESQLTD after his company and his 2014 Porsche had the plate GHOSTGTS because the sleek sportscar was white.

“The plates can make you stand out — which can be a curse or a blessing,” the 54-year-old Dertinger said. “Make sure you don’t cut anybody off.”

A man attempted to sneak in “YESDADDY” onto his license plate.
A man attempted to sneak in “YESDADDY” onto his license plate.
New York DMV
The DMV stopped a request for “FJOEBIDEN.”
The DMV stopped a request for “FJOEBIDEN.”
New York DMV
The DMV also rejects any license plates referring to politics.
The DMV also rejects any license plates referring to politics.
New York DMV

There must be a New York Jets fan playing referee at the DMV because a request for the seemingly innocent plate GASE was sidelined. Ex-Jets head coach Adam Gase had an offensive 9-23 win-loss record during his forgettable two-year tenure.

The DMV would not reveal who gives the final yea or nay.

“The DMV reviews all custom license plate requests and works hard to ensure that any combinations that may be considered objectionable are rejected,” said agency spokesman Tim O’Brien.

“GLOCKS” referring to guns is not accepted by the DMV.
“GLOCKS” referring to guns is not accepted by the DMV.
New York DMV
“FLYMOFO” is not approved by the DMV.
“FLYMOFO” is not approved by the DMV.
New York DMV

He said guidelines on what plate combinations are restricted can be found on the DMV website: https://dmv.ny.gov/learn-about-personalized-plates. Approximately 50,000 personalized and custom plates are sold per year, O’Brien said.

Bagged Tags

The state DMV has rejected 3,752 requests for custom license plates in the last three years because it deemed them potentially offensive. Here are some:

YESDADDY

FJOEBIDN

FDTRUMP

GLOCKS

FLYMOFO

BOOBIE

AS5M4N

BUDLIGHT

DEADGIRL

SUM8ITCH

GENOC1DE

S8TAN

CNNLIES

DETONATE

MURDERM3

MILFDAD

WLHUNG

Source: NYS DMV

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