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Comic Book Questions Answered – Just How Many Toes Does the Hulk Have?

by  in Comic News Comment

Comic Book Questions Answered – where I answer whatever questions you folks might have about comic books (feel free to e-mail questions to me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com). Here is a link to an archive of all the past questions that have been answered so far.

This time around, the question comes courtesy of Cully, who asks about the depiction of the Hulk’s toes. Cully mentioned it because Marvel recently released some promotional images from the upcoming Jim Starlin/Alan Davis Infinity Entity mini-series and in a flashback to the early days of the Avengers, Davis draws Hulk with three toes.


Cully wanted to know when did Hulk first have five toes? Let’s find out!

The answer, amusingly enough, is right away.

In his very first appearance, the Hulk had five toes…


When he turned green in the second issue, still five toes…


Even in Jack Kirby’s last issue of the original series, #5, still five toes…


Steve Ditko took over as the artist for the sixth and final issue and, sure enough, still five toes…


Here’s where it gets weird. So Kirby is not drawing the Hulk title anymore, but then he and Stan Lee have the Hulk guest-star in Fantastic Four #12 (which came out the same month as Incredible Hulk #6) and suddenly the Hulk has THREE toes!!!


All throughout the issue, three toes…



Okay, so Hulk is now popular enough that he is made a member of the Avengers, but in the first issue, Kirby now draws the Hulk with FOUR toes…




The SECOND issue, however, opens with the Hulk having three toes again!


But midway through the issue, he’s back to four toes…


And when he quits the team at the end of the issue, he has four toes…


The Hulk returns to FIGHT the Avengers in the following issue alongside Namor, and he starts with four toes…


but then seemingly alternates between five and four toes every other panel…


Go to the next page to see when five toes finally became the norm…

When the Hulk then appeared in the classic two-part “Hulk fights everybody” in Fantastic Four #25-26, Kirby now steadily draws him with five toes, both in #25…



and #26…


The Hulk then showed up in Tales to Astonish #59 to fight Giant-Man, and Dick Ayers draws him with five toes…


And when the Hulk got his own feature in the series the next issue, Steve Ditko draws him with five toes…


And he’s had five toes ever since!

From Severin…


to Trimpe…


to Buscema…


EDITED TO ADD: Commenter Adam Farrar noted that Al Ewing and Alan Davis actually addressed this oddity (sort of) during their Ultron Forever mini-series, where a number of Avengers are plucked out of time to fight in the future. The Hulk is seemingly beheaded…


But wait!!




So the five toes are a sign that the Hulk stabilized.

Thanks for the question, Cully! If anyone else has a question, feel free to drop me a line at bcronin@comicbookresources.com!