Despite the Hulk’s reputation as the most feral, vicious, destructive and generally out of control of all of Marvel’s heroes, you’d be surprised at just how few lives have been lost in the wake of his rampages over the years of his existence. It’s understandable of course that Marvel wouldn’t want one of its most popular heroes to be portrayed in such a violent and well… unheroic manner, but surely it’s impossible that after years of ploughing and slamming his way through cities and punching chunks out of skyscrapers that there’s been no collateral damage at all to speak of.
But even ignoring collateral damage, the Hulk’s anger issues have been a key component of the character’s essence since his inception over 5 decades ago, and given the ease with which Hulk can kill pretty much destroy or kill anyone and anything he desires, there simply has to be at least few cases of the Hulk committing cold-blooded murder, right? Well, yes. Yes there are and we here at CBR have scoured through the rubble and found several instances of such carnage and tragedy. So without further ado, let’s take a look at 15 times the Hulk brutally murdered someone.
15. ARMAND JONES
For those of you unsure of who exactly Armand Jones is, that’s hardly a surprise, as he shows up in just one issue of Web of Spider-Man before being promptly killed by a pretty pissed-off Hulk. A rogue scientist, Armand intends to finish the work of his brother Ricardo, another scientist who disappeared after working on a device built to leech the powers of the Fantastic Four.
Finally completing the device, Armand foolishly decides to test it out on a fugitive Bruce Banner while he sleeps. Of course, this doesn’t go to plan, and a surprised Hulk greets him with a slap that sends him flying. Spider-Man shows up to try and stop the Hulk from killing Armand, but in the scuffle, Hulk destroys the support beams holding up the second floor of the cabin, which falls on Armand and instantly kills him.
14. MORGAN CLEGSTEAD
Also known as the “Crawling Unknown”, Morton Clegstead is a government official seeking the capture of the Hulk, even founding a program called Project Greenskin to help achieve this. Secretly however, Clegstead is suffering from an aggressive form of cancer, and hopes to use Bruce Banner’s gamma-irradiated blood to cure himself.
As you’d expect, this doesn’t work out for Clegstead, who instead transforms into a gigantic, oozing blob of cancer cells that subsequently attack the Hulk. The Crawling Unknown proves to be a formidable opponent for Hulk, almost dragging him into its gelatinous depths several times as Hulk attempts to defend himself any way he can. Eventually impaling Clegstead with a flagpole, the battle is soon over after lightning strikes, hitting the flagpole and finishing off the Crawling Unknown for good.
13. BRIAN BANNER
Brian Banner, the father of Bruce Banner, grew up with a violent, abusive father — who also happened to be named Bruce. Ignoring Brian’s baffling choice of name for his son for a second, the name brought with it traumatic memories for Brian, who hated Bruce’s very existence. Brian eventually beat his son, forcing Bruce’s mother to intervene. Sadly, she ended up paying for this with her life after Brian smashes her head into the pavement.
After spending 15 years in prison, Brian is released and finds his son. Brian’s old habits begin to resurface and in a confrontation at his mother’s grave, Brian attacks Bruce, who knocks Brian onto his mother’s gravestone, killing him. Brian would haunt Bruce in the form of the Devil Hulk and Guilt Hulk, but the very personal nature of Brian’s death solidifies its place on this list — even if it wasn’t entirely intentional.
12. THADDEUS “THUNDERBOLT” ROSS
“What if… General Ross Had Become The Hulk?” is interesting in how it reverses the roles of Bruce Banner and Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross, though there are still differences in their personalities. As you’d expect, it’s Ross who ends up taking the impact of the gamma bomb, turning him into a Hulk. Ross’s brashness is reflected in his alter-ego, who is much more destructive than Banner’s Hulk — which leads to the accidental death of his daughter, Betty Ross.
Distraught, Ross reverts to his human form, before Bruce Banner appears and puts a bullet through Ross’ head for his actions. Sure, this version of Bruce Banner isn’t actually the Hulk, but this twist on the Hulk’s story and new dynamic between Banner and Ross deserves a place on this list. And hey, if that still doesn’t do it for you, Ross’ Hulk kills several innocent civilians and scientist Igor Drenkov too.
11. AN ALASKAN SEX OFFENDER
Incredible Hulk: Planet Hulk Prelude follows Bruce Banner during his self-imposed exile in Alaska as he attempts to start fresh and escape his life as the Hulk. Old habits die hard however, and after Bruce sees two lecherous men attempting to take advantage of a drunk young woman, Bruce follows them out to the woods they drive her to.
As the men begin to sexually assault the delirious woman, Bruce transforms into the Hulk, attacking the men and flipping over the car with one of them inside — and believe it or not he gets off easy. The other criminal isn’t fortunate enough to be left alive, as the Hulk grabs him by the face and crushes his skull, dropping the man into a pool of his own blood before leaving.
10. CAPTAIN BRITAIN
In an alternate version of the Age of Apocalypse Universe first printed in What if…? Age of Apocalypse, Captain Britain serves as a member of the Defenders alongside a Mjolnir-wielding Captain America, Colossus, Thing as well as several other heroes and villains. Rather than wearing his traditional costume, Captain Britain instead sports a souped-up version of the Iron Man armor and together the group attempts to put a stop to the tyrannical reign of Apocalypse and his legion of minions.
During the climactic battle against Apocalypse however, Captain Britain is pitted against the Hulk — now one of Apocalypse’s Horsemen — and doesn’t exactly fare too well. Despite his efforts, Captain Britain is promptly killed after the Hulk literally tears him to pieces; a rather brutal, unceremonious end for such a cool version of the character.
In 1993’s What if… the Hulk Had Killed Wolverine?, we see an all-out brawl between the two powerful heroes, with Wolverine initially putting up a good fight before eventually succumbing to the raw power displayed by the Hulk.
Caught in a flurry of gamma-irradiated fists, Wolverine is beaten to the ground, before several more powerful blows from the Hulk manage to dislodge one of the Adamantium-covered vertebrae in Wolverine’s neck, killing him almost instantly. It’s a pretty brutal beatdown by anyone’s standards, and beating Wolverine so badly that he can’t even rely on his healing factor to fix him is quite the impressive feat, even for the Green Goliath. The Hulk did feel rather bad about killing Wolverine later in the story though, if that’s any consolation at all.
8. CAPTAIN AMERICA
During the “Age of X” story, a morally gray version of Steve Rogers is one of the members of a team built to hunt mutants. Being the soft-hearted hero he is, Cap soon has a change of heart after stumbling across a group of mutant children protected by Mystique. Although it takes Mystique’s death for him to see the light, he resolves to reverse the damage he’s done, protecting and helping the remaining mutants.
This draws the ire of Cap’s superiors, who dispatch a team to take him out. Part of this team happens to be a rather scarred, unhinged version of the Hulk, who battles Cap and Sue Storm, beating them and killing Sue. Cap also loses his legs in the battle, with Hulk leaving him to bleed out as he fights against the other heroes, serving as a nice redemptive arc for Cap.
7. 26 INNOCENT CIVLIANS AND A DOG
It’s surprising that despite his appetite for destruction and mayhem, the Hulk doesn’t really seem to leave any casualties in his wake. In fact, it seems Marvel has consistently shied away from having their beloved hero responsible for civilian deaths. That all changed in the New Avengers: Illuminati one-shot however, when it’s revealed that the Hulk’s latest rampage cost the lives of 26 innocent bystanders, including 2 children and a dog.
Sure, these deaths happen off-panel, as we only hear of the incident through Maria Hill, but it doesn’t make it any less impactful; finally putting some responsibility on the shoulders of Bruce Banner, who despite fearing his alter-ego for years and years, has very rarely racked up a body count of any size. This rampage in particular is what ultimately leads Earth’s heroes to shoot the Hulk into space, kicking off the fan-favorite “Planet Hulk” story.
During the events of What if… the Hulk Evolved into the Maestro?, Doctor Leonard Samson frees the hypnotic criminal Ringmaster from prison in an attempt to help Bruce Banner merge the two aspects of his personality into one. As a long-time foe of the Hulk however, Ringmaster begins to get a little carried away with the procedure, revelling in the power he has over his nemesis.
Rendering Bruce Banner catatonic, Ringmaster bursts into hysterical laughter, and makes the fatal mistake of turning his back to his enemy. Greeted by a conscious (and extremely aggravated) Hulk, the green giant creates a vice-like grip on Ringmaster’s head with his fist, and squeezes until the villain’s head bursts, spraying a large spattering of blood and brains across the room.
5. ALMOST EVERY SUPERHERO AND MILLIONS OF PEOPLE
In the alternate Exiles story, “Days of Then and Now”, the Hulk isn’t too happy about Earth’s decision to shoot him into space, and subsequently embarks on a deadly campaign of vengeance. After being captured by Annihilus and his Annihilation Wave — a large colony of profoundly dangerous bug-like creatures — the Hulk defeats Annihilus and assumes control of the Annihilation Wave.
Pointing the colony towards Earth, the vast majority of Earth’s superheroes attempt to halt the Hulk’s genocidal plan, but to no avail, as the Hulk destroys every last one of them. Wolverine is the last hero standing in the confrontation, but is eventually defeated by the Hulk as well, who succeeds in sending the Annihilation Wave to Earth. This results in millions of casualties, including almost the entirety of the planet’s superhuman population, which may well be the most purely evil act the Hulk has ever committed.
Once again taking place in the Age of X Universe comic, a mutant-hating Hulk and his team of trackers set out to find and round up as many mutants as possible — dead or alive. Having managed to capture and torture Victor Creed (aka Sabretooth), Hulk and his team force him into serving as their tracker, sniffing out the mutants at Fortress X — a mission that would eventually lead to the deaths of Captain America and Sue Storm described earlier.
With his job complete however, Sabretooth is not released as promised. Instead, Hulk uses a shock collar to send an inhumane amount of electricity surging into the poor mutant’s body, before finishing him off with a mighty thunderclap that completely obliterates Sabretooth’s head. This is a vengeful Hulk like you’ve never seen him, with his brutal actions actually managing to invoke sympathy for the murderous Victor Creed.
While the Hulk managed to feast upon countless heroes and villains throughout the various Marvel Zombies comics, it was during Marvel Zombies 2 that he had perhaps his most impressive kill of the series. In the story, Thanos is a member of a group called the Zombie Galacti, a group of powerful Marvel characters who travel across the universe, consuming all in their path.
Thanos isn’t content with the arrangement however, and accuses Hulk of eating too much, not leaving enough for the rest of the group. Hulk responds that he has an excuse, as he’s “eating for two”, before unexpectedly obliterating Thanos’ head with a powerful clap. Given Thanos’ incredibly high power-level and status as one of the Marvel Universe’s big bads, it’s pretty impressive that the Hulk managed to dispose of the Mad Titan so quickly, which is the reason it’s so high on the list.
2. HERR KLEISER
An especially evil member of the Chitauri, Herr Kleiser is a prominent villain in several issues of The Ultimates. Attempting to take over the Earth in order to destroy any semblance of individuality, Herr Kleiser’s status as a master strategist proves a formidable tool against the Ultimates, and he attempts to destroy SHIELD by luring them into a nuclear blast.
While his plans are thwarted, countless lives within SHIELD are lost, resulting in a stand-off between Kleiser and Captain America, with Cap managing to cut him in half. With Kleiser still alive and kicking however, Cap intentionally draws the ire of the Hulk and redirects it at Kleiser by telling Hulk that the alien had been having an affair with Betty Ross. This is all the motivation the Hulk needs to annihilate Kleiser, as he beats him to a pulp, before tearing his head off and eventually eating his remains.
1. WOLVERINE’S FAMILY
In what is easily the most disturbing portrayal of the Hulk ever printed, “Old Man Logan” paints the Hulk as the patriarch of an inbred gang of similarly powered creatures in its post-apocalyptic setting. Terrorising the local area, the Hulk Gang demand money from the area’s residents, with death often serving as the punishment for failing to meet their unreasonable demands.
An older version of Logan has a run-in with the Hulk Gang as he struggles to come up with the money to pay them. Threatening his family for this crime, the Hulk sends Wolverine away, only for Logan to discover that his wife and two children have already been slaughtered by them, simply because “they got bored”. It’s a chilling portrayal of the Hulk, and is certain to make sure you never look at him the same way again.
Did we miss any other instances of the Hulk committing murder? Sound off in the comments below!
- Ad Free Browsing
- Over 10,000 Videos!
- All in 1 Access
- Join For Free!