Robert Downey Jr. Breaks Down Why Smart Hulk Proves Marvel Studios Is Great at Telling Stories

2020 is the start of something new for Marvel Studios as they set up the path forward following Avengers: Endgame. Now, with Iron Man out of action, Robert Downey Jr. is talking about how that Marvel storytelling was so magical throughout his tenure. He was talking with Joe Rogan on his podcast about Smart Hulk as an example of adversity making the creative team stronger. People had speculated that fans would be getting this different version of the Hulk on-screen before Endgame hit theaters, but seeing it pulled off was nothing short of amazing. But, as Downey says in his comments, that challenge is something that filmmakers like the Russo Brothers thrive off of.

Downey began, “After so many times, and this is the genius of people who break and shape stories over there, Feige and his team as they go, ‘He’s Hulk then he’s not Hulk, he’s Hulk, it’s a big battle, oh, he’s so conflicted…What if he could meet himself in the middle?’ Then, what corner have we painted ourselves in by having him meet himself in the middle because then you can’t ever…If that doesn’t work, you can’t go back to the way it was. You’ve done it. Or, you can go back to the way it was.

“I just think that the real genius of the Marvel creative team, and the Russo Brothers who did the last few,” he continued. “Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame. They go, ‘We love writing ourselves into a corner. We love it.’ Because, then, it activates all of those ‘How do we get out of purgatory juices’ and then you get the next right idea.”

It wouldn’t be right for the Iron Man actor to get out of an appearance without the inevitable question of if he would be open to returning to the role. Almost every public appearance since the movie hit theaters has featured some form of this question. Downey sounds happy to be out of the armor, but he did mention that there were certain conditions that could facilitate a return.

“To me, starting up again is off the table. I feel like I’ve done all I could with that character. There would have to be a super compelling argument and a series of events that made it obvious,” Downey said of the possibility of a return.“But the other thing is, I wanna do other stuff.”


This falls in line with other recent comments from the Avengers star about the prospect of putting on the suit once again to fight bad guys.

"Yeah, anything could happen. I’m really enjoying…" Downey shared during a previous interview before his wife interjected. He added, "As far as I’m concerned, I hung up my guns and I’m good to let it go. I also think Marvel is on this journey now and they’re trying a bunch of other stuff, and I’m excited for them to see how all that goes. It’s hard to project."