Ever since Joss Whedon reinvigorated the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of the Hulk in ‘The Avengers,’ fans have been speculating about where and how we’d see Dr. Bruce Banner and his jolly green alter ego again. But besides a small cameo in ‘Iron Man 3,’ it looks like we won’t be seeing the gamma-powered giant until ‘The Avengers: Age of Ultron.’ But what about after that? Recently, actor Mark Ruffalo indicated once again that ‘Planet Hulk’ was out of the equation, but some new reports might indicate that that elements of the acclaimed storyline may appear in Phase Three.

HitFix  revealed (extremely carefully and vaguely) the final act of the film which sets up for whatever is in store for Captain America, Thor, and the rest of the characters in the next chapter of the story, including Banner. Then, they went into some SPOILER territory by explaining what literally launches Hulk into his next adventure:

“Without giving away why and how, let’s look at the state of things for Bruce Banner at the end of ‘Age Of Ultron’. Banner continues to play a key role in things in this movie, and when the final war with Ultron spills onto the battlefield and out of the virtual realm, he has a major part to play. Unfortunately, that ends with him onboard a Quinjet on his way off the planet, with no way to immediately turn things around. He’s going to have to ride out the trip. It’s pre-programmed and he can’t stop it.

Here’s where I’d wager his spaceship is headed: wherever the Guardians of the Galaxy are located. If I was a betting man, I’d say there will be no Hulk solo film as part of Phase Three. Instead, Banner’s ship will take him to another planet, where he will end up meeting the Guardians and having an adventure with them. Hulk will definitely come out to play a few times. I suspect we’ll see some sequences that very much feel like they’re part of the Planet Hulk story, but that the larger story will be about the Guardians finding a way to get Banner home, only to end up going with him. That would move a big piece of the puzzle into place to get Thanos looking back at the Earth in time for the third ‘Avengers’ film.”

Even though that second paragraph is just a theory, it sounds like a pretty damn good one. Considering that Thanos and the Guardians have been heavily hinted at being involved in ‘The Avengers 3’, this would be an awesomely organic way to bring them to Earth. Also, while it won’t be ‘Planet Hulk’ exactly, we’d still get to see the big guy battle some aliens who may or may not be wearing gladiator armor.

After hearing this report, are you in favor of this proposed plan of action for the Hulk in Marvel’s Phase Three? Do you have any other theories about the fate of Bruce Banner after ‘The Avengers: Age of Ultron’? Let us know in the comments below.