It is a very rare occasion when the Big Two cross paths, but Greg Pak (Marvel) and Gene Luen Yang (DC Comics) sat down for a very nerdy edition of the Asian-American pop culture podcast, They Call Us Bruce.
Pak has written for the Hulk and Yang for some Superman stories. They entered a one-sided debate about the age-old comic book question: Who would win in a fight, the Hulk or Superman?
In 2015, Pak had reinvented a dormant character, a cocky, Korean-American teenager Amadeus Cho and then made him the new Hulk instead of Bruce Banner for Totally Awesome Hulk.
In the DCU, the Chinese government recreated Superman’s powers and endowed them to Kenan Kong, yet another cocky adolescent from Beijing.
At around the 35-minute mark of the show, host Phil Yu threw down the gauntlet. Pak’s and Yang’s answers had come with caveats and X-factors, but they both agree that the Hulk — either Bruce or Amadeus would get the upper hand on the Man of Steel. But Superman is not just a fighter, and this makes all the difference.
“When I’ve been given this question before it’s usually with Clark Kent,” Pak says. “My honest answer is that, if all they’re doing is fighting, Hulk will win, because Hulk is the strongest one there is. The angrier he gets, no matter how strong Superman is, Hulk can get stronger if you make him mad enough.”
Pak is not biased, and he wrote Clark Kent and Superman during the three-year run on DC’s Action Comics.
“Superman, being who he is, will not just make his enemy angry. Also, Superman, Clark, would take the time to figure out what’s going on and try to diffuse the situation. Clark doesn’t just charge into battle and start fighting people for the hell of it. He doesn’t lose control in that kind of way. And if he does, he comes back. So Clark would win by eventually finding a way to reach the hulk and diffuse him, and the Hulk would turn back into Bruce Banner.”
That is when the podcasts’ hosts changed the question: “What if it’s Amadeus Cho (as the Hulk) versus Kenan Kong (as Super-Man)? “Then it depends on when in his emotional development Kenan is,” Pak explains.
Yang posits that Amadeus, just like Bruce Banner gets stronger as the Hulk gets angrier. Also, Pak teases that it has not happened in The Totally Awesome Hulk, yet.
“Amadeus has not yet demonstrated that he’s got the depths of anger that Bruce has,” he says. “So we don’t know how strong he can get. He says he’s the strongest one there is because he’s Amadeus. Of course, he’s going to say that. And according to the rules, he could be. But how angry can Amadeus get? What will put Amadeus over the top?”
This is when Yang interjects: “I feel like that answers the question. Amadeus would clearly win, because Kenan is a dick! He would make Amadeus so mad. He would beat those depths of anger.”
Pak jokes, “Sadly, that means they both lose.”