Spider-Man just re-created the Hulk’s MCU Infinity War woes by giving him a second chance.

This issue of Symbiote Spider-Man: Crossroads takes place at a time when Peter Parker was still in possession of the Venom symbiote, and the Incredible Hulk is on the hunt for the web-head. Spider-Man, on the other hand, has an item that gives him the power to take on the rampaging Jade Giant, forcing the Hulk to face a similar predicament as he had in the MCU, namely being locked in the less powerful form of Bruce Banner.

When Spider-Man stopped a Norn Stone thief, Karnilla, Queen of the Norns, banished him to the Crossroads via an interdimensional portal. Dr. Strange had exiled the Hulk when he went on a rampage fueled by the mythical villain Nightmare. Even though the magical stone had empowered Spider-Man, it chose not to stay with him and instead went in quest of a more powerful host. Next, the Stone turns its attention to The Hulk, which has a very unexpected effect on him.

Norn Stone embeds in Hulk’s forehead as the Avengers battle hostile inhabitants of their strange new world. The Norn Stone is searching for someone with unlimited potential. However, instead of enhancing the already great green brute’s power, the artifact instantaneously transforms him into Bruce Banner, who is physically inferior.

Banner’s untapped potential leaves him vulnerable against the energies of the Crossroads, as he is knocked unconscious without warning. In Avengers: Infinity War, after being severely defeated by Thanos, the Hulk became stranded in his weaker human form.

Even if the Norn Stone isn’t fully sentient, it does have a mind of its own, and Bruce Banner has no idea what it has planned. Although his knowledge hasn’t seemed to aid him much in his new environment, it must be considered that the stone has found in Banner a strength the Hulk cannot tap into.

It’s still possible that there’s more going on here than meets the eye. If anything, it’s given Banner a vacation from his scary alter persona, but in such a harsh setting, that may be more of a hindrance than an aid.

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