The First (Part 1)


12 of season 4
Frank Orsatti
Andrew Schneider
Original airdate
March 6, 1981
David Barr
Vissaria (fictional)
Preceded by
Followed by

The First (Part 1) is episode sixty-nine of the live-action TV series The Incredible Hulk. It originally aired on March 6, 1981, on CBS.


It begins with a group of young people driving in a thunderstorm and a tree falls over onto the road. They swerve, hitting a (standing) tree, causing the car to be inoperable. They walk to the Clive house and decide to go in to call home because they were stranded. One of the kids, Walt, wanders around and finds the gamma chamber room. He hears something behind some curtains, and when he opens them, he is attacked and killed (revealed later to be by another hulk-like creature).

A year later, David hears about another Hulk that was sighted in a town named Vissaria. He goes there and talks to a library janitor who explains about Dr. Clive’s green creature. 30 years earlier, a scientist named Jeffrey Clive created a gamma chamber to cure Dell Frye’s arthritis. But the radiation turned him into a savage dark greenish creature with wild uncontrollable hair. There was a farmer named Frank Townsend who bullied Dell often. Dell got upset and he transformed into the creature, who then killed Townsend.

David questions Frye about Clive. Case and Willie hear their conversation and want to interfere. They wonder if David had something to do with the murder of their brother. Then they hit David with a club and knock him into a well. He transforms into the Hulk and attacks the brothers. Dell leads the creature back to the Clive house. Dell watches the creature revert back to Banner. Now, Dell asks David some questions. Dell gives him Clive’s notes. David begins to read the notes. He scans through the book but does not find what he is looking for. Then Dell demands that he use the gamma chamber first to cure his arthritis. But David refuses and Dell knocks him out and put himself on the table and subjects himself to gamma rays, which makes him transform back into the "first hulk". The creature knocks David out and heads out a back door.


  • Bill Bixby as David Banner
  • Lou Ferrigno as The Hulk
  • Harry Townes as Dell Frye
  • Lola Albright as Elizabeth Collins
  • Bill Beyers as Case
  • Chip Frye as Willie
  • Billy Green Bush as Sheriff Carl Decker
  • Kari Michaelson as Linda
  • Jack Magee as Walt
  • Julie Marine as Cheryl
  • Hank Rolike as Janitor
  • Dick Durock as Frye's Creature
  • Bob Harks as Deputy


  • Dirk Durock ("The Swamp Thing") is very eerie as the evil Hulk and the showdown between the creatures is one of the series highlights. Bixby gives a terrific performance in this episode. It has some nice subtle homages to the 1930s monster movies that Universal Pictures created (see Trivia section).
  • This two-part episode is notable in that it is the only episode in the entire series run in which the antagonist is another super-powered character.
  • Hulk-out 1: Being beaten up and thrown down a well
  • Hulk-out 2: Having David rudely turn off the gamma radiation machine when Dell Frye is trying to turn himself back into the green creature he used to turn into in the 1950s


  • The deceased scientist Dr. Jeffrey Clive is a tribute to movie actor Colin Clive, who played Dr. Frankenstein in the Frankenstein movies from the 1930s
  • Dell Frye, the name of Dr. Clive's assistant, is a tribute to movie actor Dwight Frye, who played Dr. Frankenstein's assistant Fritz in Frankenstein (1931)
  • The fictional town of Vissaria is also the name of the village in the Frankenstein movies (though spelled with only one 's')
  • When the Hulk transforms back into David, the footage of the change was from "Prometheus" (season four)


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