“HULK IS STRONGEST THERE IS!” When a character hears this they know one of two things is about to happen. First, everything in the surrounding area is about to be reduced to rubble. Second, there is a good chance the character hearing that scream is going to be right in the middle of said rubble, or part of it. The Incredible Hulk has smashed more people and more places than most other characters combined, usually just because certain people (we’re looking at you General Ross and the U.S. Military) won’t just leave him alone. What would happen though if one of these characters that got caught up in one of Hulk's rampages got pushed too far? What if they don’t want to understand that he’s not completely in control?
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Most characters (and readers) look at the Hulk as an indestructible mass of flesh where the best way of fighting him is to run away. Hulk, however, is not completely indestructible. There have been quite a few times where the Green Goliath has been “permanently” silenced. For one reason or another, different characters at different points have found ways to kill the Hulk. From the Punisher to Deadpool, human extinction and gods themselves, the Hulk is more than capable of dying. It’s just a matter of finding the right way to get the job done.
15 CIVIL WAR 2
The most recent addition to the list of Hulk deaths, the murder of Bruce Banner was a moment of utter shock for a lot of the comic community. While some were able to predict what would happen (and we don’t mean Ulysses) watching Bruce Banner take an arrow to the face is not an easy sight to behold.
While it is revealed almost immediately after that Bruce had approached Hawkeye months before about this exact situation, there was still a trial. This brings up the main issue of Civil War II which is simply, if you know something is going to happen, is it okay for you to stop it? Is a person guilty of a crime they have not yet committed just because someone has a feeling they will or a vision of them doing it?
14 OLD MAN LOGAN
One certainty when it comes to Old Man Logan, Hulk deserved what he got. Hulk became a warlord who sent out his inbred, redneck family to collect rent from the people living in his territory and allowed them to torture and kill people when they didn’t have the rent on time. Now living on a farm with his family, the one time Wolverine didn’t have the rent ready when the Hulk Gang came calling. After they agree to give him 2 weeks to get the money, they put the beat down on the old man.
After returning from a trip in an attempt to make the money so that his family could live in peace, Logan finds the broken murdered bodies of his family. This causes Logan to go into a rage which ends in the death of all but one of the Hulk Gang and the Hulk himself.
13 WORLD WAR HULK (APPARENT)
At the end of World War Hulk it looked like the Green Goliath had been put down for good. After the Hulk tore apart New York, he was confronted by The Sentry. The ensuing battle razed a massive section of the city, and as the battle raged on, the pair were shown to start shrinking until it was Bruce Banner and Robert Reynolds throwing the punches at each other.
After the reversion to Bruce, Rick Jones reaches out to Bruce to welcome him home, trying to help put his rage at rest, Hulk’s Warbound, Miek, didn’t like this turn of events however and impales Rick. This throws Hulk into a rage unlike any previously seen, and Tony Stark had to use a massive satellite to put the Hulk down. As the comic ends, we see Bruce Banner being taken away on a high tech gurney, his fate unknown, but thereafter the Hulk was, for all intents and purposes, dead. Of course, it didn't stick.
Maestro is a version of the Hulk from about 100 years in the future, one who had become... we were going to say "jaded," but he's pretty much just downright despotic. During this time, the world had a nuclear war which nearly wiped out all life on the planet, and what was left was taken over by Maestro. While most of the world had been killed by the nuclear fallout, Maestro survived, and even though driven mad by the amount of radiation he absorbed, retained Banner’s intelligence and even more strength than Professor Hulk.
At one point in his story, Maestro winds up fighting the Hulk, and even though he breaks Hulk’s neck, Hulk is able to defeat him. Part of his defeat at the hands of Hulk included being sent back in time using Dr. Doom’s time machine to the exact point where the original Gamma Bomb created the Hulk. Maestro was seemingly killed in the blast.
11 DEADPOOL KILLS THE MARVEL UNIVERSE
Don’t let the title fool you, in this story, Deadpool doesn’t just kill the Marvel Universe; he leaps dimensions and murders the writers too. In one of the most flagrant displays of exploiting one particular part of a character, Marvel created a story where they warped Deadpool so much that he literally kills anyone and everyone hero or villain in the entire universe. He comes to the mindset that nothing will ever change if they don’t ALL die. One kill in particular was Hulk, where Deadpool confronts him and gets torn to pieces. While resting from the fight in Bruce Banner form, Deadpool says “You shouldn’t rip me apart and then take a nap. You wouldn’t like me when I’ve been ripped apart.” He then decapitates Bruce Banner.
10 PUNISHER KILLS THE MARVEL UNIVERSE
This story, while a blatant kill everything yarn, actually tried to make it work within the story of the character. Instead of Frank Castle’s family dying in a park in the middle of a gang war, they were caught in the crossfire of a battle between the Avengers, the X-men and a group of Brood along with other aliens. When Frank arrived on the scene, his family was dead and Daredevil was tearing into the other heroes for being so careless. This causes Frank to focus all of his Punisher rage on supers.
In a fashion similar to Deadpool, Punisher watched as Hulk went on one of his rampages and tagged him with a tracker. After Hulk settled down into Bruce Banner and took a nap, Punisher followed him and as the beeping of the tracking device woke Bruce up, put a bullet in his head.
9 DEATH OF INCREDIBLE HULK (TV MOVIE)
A TV movie made from The Incredible Hulk starring Lou Ferrigno and Bill Bixby, The Death of the Incredible Hulk explores David Banner’s attempt to finally rid himself of the Hulk. Learning of a scientist who has been working on experiments involving the human body’s capacity to heal, Banner goes undercover as a custodian to get close to the information he seeks.
Eventually being found out and then starting to work with the good scientist and his wife, this movie solidifies the fact that in this universe Banner completely hates the Hulk and sees no redeeming human qualities in him. Banner gets to see the Hulk, then after an eastern European spy organization tries to steal the information, Hulk is thrown from an exploding plane where after the fall, he turns back to Banner and dies.
8 NERD HULK (ULTIMATE UNIVERSE)
Nerd Hulk is a clone of Bruce Banner in the Ultimate universe where he had the Hulk’s body and Banners intelligence. This is proven by Captain America to be more a curse than a blessing however when he shows that he was able to defeat Nerd Hulk without any real issues. This version of Hulk eventually got turned into a vampire and wound up leading the vampire hordes when he killed their original master. This was mostly short-lived, however, when he leads a charge of the vampires against the Triskelion. Even though he kills the Thor impersonator known as Perun, Nerd Hulk is still done in by Captain America, who uses Perun's hammer to teleport the entire Triskelion to Iran where it is day time. As Nerd Hulk and all of the vampires are dying from the sunlight, Cap decapitates him using the hammer.
7 DEATH BY HOARFEN
In at least the Norse Mythology of the Marvel universe, Hoarfen is the child of Fenris Wolf and an unnamed frost giantess. This character was introduced in an arc of the Incredible Hulk comics, specifically issue #422 by Peter David and Gary Frank. In this arc, we see the Merged/Professor Hulk (Savage Hulk, Grey Hulk and Bruce Banner combined) clash with who he claims to be an imposter Thor known as Red Norvell. This battle in turn leads to a standoff with the Warriors Three. The Hulk and the Pantheon (his team at the time) were in Asgard chasing their former ally Agamemnon. As the team recovered him and threw him into Hulk's arms, the gigantic ice-wolf Hoarfen emerged from the ice and swallowed the pair, killing them both in a flash of green blood.
6 WHAT IF… THE HULK WENT BERSERK
In What if Vol. 1 #45, we are asked the question, what if the Hulk went berserk? The very simple answer to that question is nothing good. In this story, when Bruce Banner runs out to knock Rick Jones into the ditch, which saves him and turns Bruce into the Hulk, Bruce is a little too slow. He doesn’t actually have time to knock Rick into the ditch, which results in the pair surviving and being telepathically linked.
When Gen. Ross finds out about this link, he exploits it by torturing Rick to death, which causes Hulk to lose all reason and give in to the throes of rage, focusing his fury on the death of Ross. The ensuing battle ends with the deaths of Ben Grimm and Tony Stark until Thor shows up and reluctantly breaks the Hulk’s neck.
5 WHAT IF…PLANET HULK
What if… Planet Hulk brings us back to the war-torn planet of Sakaar, where the Hulk now presides as the Green King alongside his queen Caiera the Oldstrong. In this version of the story, however, Caiera doesn’t use her power to protect Hulk because he tells her to use it on herself before picking her up and throwing her out of the blast radius.
This results in the death of the Hulk as well as a large population of the superhumans on Earth because instead of Hulk going down there and showing what his version of justice is, we get it from Caiera. Caiera has absolutely no interest in showing she is above anyone, she just wants the heroes to burn for what she thinks they did. The deaths of major characters such as Dr. Strange and Sentry almost immediately show just how serious she is.
The Mighty Thor: Lord of Earth brought with it a storyline where in the future, Thor decided protecting the nine realms wasn’t enough, he needed to rule them to be able to take care of them properly. This results in the complete subjugation of Earth including rehabilitation centers for any who would not follow the new (or old) ways willingly. In a flashback during this future ruled by Thor, we see a past battle where the last of Earth’s heroes tried to put a stop to what Thor had done; all to no avail, of course. Wolverine, Captain America, Dr. Strange and yes, even the Hulk, were but a few who would fight and indeed die in the final battle; all of them perished at the hands of the Odin-strong King Thor.
3 HULK ROBOT
The Hulk Robot was originally created as a mascot for a college all-star game, but the professor in charge wouldn’t allow the robot's use because he thought it to be far too dangerous. The robot wound up being brought to life by the Eternals and after gaining sentience, went on a rampage that the national guard could not stop. Later on, the Hulk Robot served as a weapon for characters such as Dr. Doom and the Leader.
While a manmade object only resembling Hulk, he gained sentience from the Eternals and was used from that day forward; he was also no slouch in the strength department, and at very least matched the Hulk's resting power levels. None of this mattered, though, when he crossed paths with the Red Hulk, who then drained the Gamma Radiation inside of the Hulk Robot and tore him in half.
2 HULK: THE END
Hulk: The End shows a future where a war ends in a violent nuclear holocaust where only the Hulk survived, along with a breed of giant cockroach that would daily come to feast upon his ever-regenerating flesh. Shown talking to a floating robot that always floats about 10 feet away from him, Hulk and Banner are still conflicted even in this world where nothing else exists but them.
When the "pair" is set upon by the mutant roaches, Banner is able to watch later on. The death in this story comes into play when Bruce has a heart attack in the middle of the night after having a dream of someone who looks like Betty Ross. After awakening from the dream, the Hulk persona shows himself to Bruce and allows him to die, leaving Hulk completely alone to prove that he is the strongest one there is. Only problem is, there’s no one to prove that to anymore.
Onslaught is a sentient psionic entity created from the consciousness of two of the most powerful mutants in the world: Charles Xavier and Magneto. The biggest fight with Onslaught came when the Avengers, X-Men and Fantastic Four all teamed up to battle him. Onslaught’s armor was so hard that none were having any luck penetrating it as they tried to free Franklin Richards and X-Man.
That is, nobody could damage him... until Jean Grey turned off the Bruce persona in Hulk’s head, turning him absolutely savage and set him loose. After the armor was destroyed, the explosion separated Banner and the Hulk. As the heroes threw themselves into the energy that was Onslaught to dissipate him, it was Banner who pulled Hulk in with him to absorb what was left, resulting in the apparent deaths of the heroes except the X-Men, who, as mutants, could not make the sacrifice.
Can you think of any other time the Hulk died? Let us know in the comments!