"Hulk is strongest there is!" That's something the Hulk has proclaimed on many an occasion. It's a pretty bold statement from someone who absolutely isn't the strongest there is. In fact, he's not all that close but, then again, the gamma-powered Avenger never was the brightest bulb in the box. Sure, staunch fans of the character will claim that he has unlimited potential strength, but we can only go by what we've seen him do on-panel, and comic books have shown that the Hulk certainly has his limits.
The very Marvel universe the Hulk inhabits is home to countless characters whose strength is superior to that of the Green Goliath's. In many of those cases, Hulk's strength is emphatically dwarfed by said characters (to the extent that him punching them in the face with all his might would be the equivalent of a flea punching the average human). And we're not just talking about the godlike creator entities in the Marvel universe. The likes of the One-Above-All and the Living Tribunal quite obviously make the Hulk's very existence pale into insignificance, but you definitely don't have to go that far up the power hierarchy to find characters who could out-muscle Bruce Banner's angry alter ego.
So, with that in mind, let's take a look at some of the characters in the Marvel universe who could put Hulk to the sword in a battle of strength. While the entries in this list vary vastly in terms of their power levels, it will prove that you don't have to look up as far as you might think to find such individuals. Here are 15 Marvel Characters Stronger Than The Hulk.
Admittedly, we're starting pretty high on the power hierarchy with this guy. However, given that we need to make it very clear that Hulk is not the strongest character in Marvel, we're bound to include some characters who simply can't be argued against. Galactus, also known as the Devourer of Worlds, is a gigantic cosmic being who appears in humanoid form to the inhabitants of Earth (how he is visibly conceived differs greatly between civilizations). Oh, and he literally eats planets for sustenance.
In addition to his wide array of more complex powers, he has demonstrated an astronomical amount of super-strength that completely overshadows that of the Hulk. He's strong enough that he can treat planets like juggling balls, for goodness' sake! Galactus has literally held the Hulk like an insect in his hand, and the gamma-radiated beast had absolutely no chance of escaping. Galactus' strength is such that casual swings of his hand have sent characters like Thor and the Silver Surfer hurtling for miles. He has also clapped his hands together with enough strength to create a shockwave that knocked out Beta Ray Bill and Stardust. The Hulk is nothing to him.
Speaking of Galactus, Tyrant was actually created by the Devourer of Worlds billions of years ago. Galactus created the gigantic machine in his own image, granting him approximately the same amount of power as himself, in order to have Tyrant serve him and fight by his side. Of course, Tyrant developed his own agenda and rebelled against Galactus. Since then, he has certainly proven himself to be his creator's equal, including in terms of the level of super-strength he possesses.
Not only has he fought Galactus in physical tussles and emerged with his life, beings who could definitely go toe-to-toe with the Hulk in a physical contest have casually been disposed of by Tyrant. Examples include him punching Terrax and leaving him extremely groggy, knocking out Beta Ray Bill with a single punch, knocking out Gladiator with a single punch, and knocking out Legacy AKA Genis-Vell by simply swatting him like a fly. Those are all things the Hulk simply couldn't do.
To put into perspective how much stronger Odin is than the Hulk, consider these very obvious facts: Hulk regularly brawls fairly evenly with Thor in straight-up physical tussles, but Thor's father is exponentially more powerful than his son in every single way imaginable. Odin is a Skyfather, a being who rules over a pantheon of gods, and he could easily toss Hulk around like a rag doll.
In addition to having a bunch of esoteric powers, in terms of his physical strength, Odin has done things like headbutt Galactus, knocking both himself and the Devourer of Worlds unconscious. He has sliced mountains in two with a single swing of his sword. He has swatted beings like his son, Thor, and the Silver Surfer away as if they were flies. And his fight with fellow god Set shook galaxies -- and even destroyed some -- as a mere side effect of the impact of their blows. Odin is Marvel's most powerful Skyfather, which is further confirmation that he is stronger than the Hulk when you take a look at the next entry on this list and what he is capable of against the Green Goliath.
Like out last entry, Zeus is also a Skyfather in the Marvel universe. While he hasn't displayed the same levels of power as Odin on-panel, he is generally considered the Asgardian's equal, which means this entry serves to further emphasize Odin's superiority over the Hulk, as well as Zeus' own. We actually have a direct comparison to refer to for Zeus being stronger than the Hulk, because he beat the holy hell out of him in a straight-up hand-to-hand brawl
The confrontation occurred in 2011's The Incredible Hulks #622, and it wasn't even a contest. In spite of the fact that the gamma-radiated antihero got the first punch in, Zeus proceeded to destroy him. The first assault left Hulk vomiting gallons of his own green blood. The next blow knocked him unconscious. Such was the brutality of the brief beat-down, the Hulk took three days to heal from it. Other strength feats for Zeus include throwing Mount Etna as a projectile weapon and very, very easily beating down heroes like Namor and Hercules.
11 Sentry/The Void
This entry's a little different, because Sentry and the Void are one and the same. The Sentry is a superhero, but the Void is a villainous projection of his dark side, one that manifests itself as a result of the difficulties Sentry's body has containing his immense power. Hulk has fought them both. He was utterly destroyed by the Void, and although he has fought relatively evenly with Sentry before, the latter simply has to be put down to bad writing. Regardless, Sentry's overall record against the Hulk has him bettering the Green Goliath more often than not, but some people will still point to their "tie".
That infamous Hulk versus Sentry tie happened in 2007's World War Hulk. Not only did Sentry choose to brawl with the Hulk (conveniently forgetting that he had dozens of other powers that could have ended the fight quickly), but his strength was also massively downplayed by the writers that day. Sentry can casually stop a double-handed swing of Terrax's axe with one hand, and that's an attack that has destroyed entire planets. He can tear Ares, the God of War, in half and, apparently, fight evenly with Galactus. He is undoubtedly consistently shown as being stronger than the Hulk.
And the Void being stronger is even less open to debate. In 2006's Sentry Vol. 2 #3, the Void's tendrils got a hold of the Hulk and effortlessly broke every single bone in his body. Hulk was utterly helpless, because the Void is just so much stronger than him.
10 The Fury
The Fury is quite an obscure character with a very limited number of appearances, but it quickly established itself as one of the more powerful entities to exist in the Marvel multiverse. Based on those brief runs, we have to imagine that it's stronger than the Hulk could ever hope to be. It's a "cybiote" that was created by the massively powerful reality warper Jim Jaspers, on Earth-238, for the specific purpose of wiping out all of the heroes in that reality. It achieved that feat within just two years, which means it already managed to dispose of his world's version of the Hulk.
The Fury is specifically programmed to be more powerful and more adaptable than every superhero in existence. It punches through mystic forcefields like they aren't even there, and once punched Captain Britain so hard that he spent a page and a half of a comic flying through the air. (That's, like, a really long distance. Probably.) It is essentially immune to almost any attack, including reality warping, and it would simply shrug off Hulk's punches while utterly destroying him. That is, after all, specifically the kind of thing that one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel universe created it to do.
Just about everyone knows who Thanos is now. Up until recently, he didn't have the level of infamy that comic book villains like the Joker, Lex Luthor, Doctor Doom or Magneto had, but his presence in the MCU has changed that. That being said, not many people associate him with being massively physically strong at base level. Sure, they know he's got a varied power set and is obviously an absolute beast when he's in possession of items like the Infinity Gauntlet, the Heart of the Universe, and Cosmic Cubes, but most are unaware that his physical strength is superior to characters like the Hulk.
People will point to the fact that Thanos has actively stated that he tries to avoid confrontation with the Green Goliath, but that's just because he thinks he's a nuisance. Whenever Thanos fights the Hulk, he overpowers him effortlessly. He has slapped Hulk away like a bug (the famous Thanos "pimp slap"), almost beat the Silver Surfer to death with just a couple of punches, punched Captain Mar-Vell all the way from Saturn to Earth, physically dominated entire teams of Avengers, knocked out guys like the Thing in a single hit, and even physically out-powered the aforementioned Tyrant without a power-up.
The Avengers certainly have a tall task ahead of them in Infinity War.
Surtur is a galaxy-destroying fire demon from the extra-dimensional plane of Muspelheim. He doesn't often get into physical tussles, which limits the number of actual feats he has performed in terms of physical strength that we have to refer back to. But the ones he has performed, as well as the general descriptions of the character's level of power, guarantee that he is undoubtedly stronger than the Hulk.
The evil being has brawled evenly with Odin and is generally considered to be on the Allfather's level. He has destroyed the Rainbow Bridge (or Bifrost) with a single swing of his sword, he has thrown pyramids as projectile weapons, he has knocked out characters like Thor with a casual punch, and a casual flick of his tail destroyed a huge building that had been thrown at him by Hercules and Leir.
Interestingly, we may yet get to see a live-action version of Surtur versus the Hulk in 2017's Thor: Ragnarok. That's a fight in which you will surely see the Hulk get overwhelmingly and emphatically beaten -- if it's at all faithful to the comics, that is.
7 The Destroyer Armor
The Destroyer Armor is the first entry on this list that isn't really a "character", but it does come to life when inhabited by magic or the life force of others. that said, it always displays strength that is substantially higher than that of the Hulk's. Made of an unknown metal and enchanted to be more durable than Uru (the metal that Mjolnir is made of), it is also imbued by all of the Skyfathers with a portion of their power. It is, by definition, an absolute physical monster.
It can lift the aforementioned Mjolnir with one hand (in spite of the fact that it isn't worthy) and can even beat up its owner, Thor, with it. It actually once punched Thor so hard that the whole of New York City moved. It also treats characters like Hercules and Heimdall like rag dolls. Moreover, it has actually beaten the Hulk in a straight-up punch-up. It picked him up like he was a toy and even crushed his ribs in a frighteningly casual manner.
Mangog was created as the sum-total of the hatred of a billion billion barbarians. The barbarians in question were members of an unknown alien race who were thwarted by Odin in their attempts to invade Asgard. They returned with a vengeance in the form of this single, incredibly powerful (and hideously ugly) being. Not only is Mangog virtually impossible to hurt, he is also inconceivably strong.
He has casually one-shotted beings as powerful as Ulik. He took out three Storm Giants with a single punch. He treats the Silver Surfer like a mere rag doll. He has taken on entire teams of Avengers and described them as being like insects to him. He has easily beaten the holy hell out of Thor, swatting Mjolnir out of the air like it was nothing in the process. He has also waded through teams of generic Asgardian soldiers like a hot knife through butter. Moreover, something particularly relevant when it comes to fighting the Hulk is the fact that Mangog feeds on anger and hatred. If the two fought, he would simply get stronger, feeding off the Hulk's own rage, while weakening the Green Goliath in the process. The Hulk would lose horrifically.
En Sabah Nur AKA Apocalypse is the oldest of all the mutants in the Marvel universe. He possesses a myriad of powers, both physical and mental, which often makes people forget that he is incredibly powerful when it comes to his basic physical strength. In fact, he is proven to be much stronger than the Hulk.
When Apocalypse got hold of Hulk, he restrained him easily. He spoke to him like he was a child, telling him to stop struggling, because resisting his strength was pointless, and telling him to be obedient and appreciative of his presence. On another occasion, he physically brought the Hulk to his knees. Other strength feats for the character include punching Thor so hard that his head should have detached from his spine (Thor was only saved by the limberness provided by the fact he was drunk at the time). He has headbutted Thor so hard that it sent shock-waves for miles. Moreover, Apocalypse's physical attributes can be augmented by the Celestial technology that is attached to his body. Essentially, he can increase his own strength artificially, which is a scary thought considering how strong he is naturally.
4 The Silver Surfer
The Silver Surfer is an enormously powerful character (having been imbued with said power by Galactus himself), and he possesses a wide range of exotic abilities. He isn't, however, known for his strength. This possibly owes to the fact that he is slender and very slightly built in comparison to a lot of other heroes. However, he is, in fact, a physical beast, one that is definitely capable of outmuscling the Hulk.
The pair have fought on a number of occasions, with Surfer coming out on top most of the time due to his energy projection powers. When it comes to physical strength, both have got the better of each other, but Surfer has won the majority of these contests. Like Hulk's strength increases with rage, Surfer can use the Power Cosmic to increase his own, and the Power Cosmic is a much more potent source of power than rage-fuelled gamma radiation (that's just a fact). And it certainly doesn't hurt that he has vastly superior super-speed behind his physical attacks.
Surfer's most impressive feats of strength include things like breaking out of a planet-sized cluster of asteroids that Michael Korvac has crushed him inside, shattering numerous vibranium walls, and throwing a starship into the outer solar system on a path that would continue for centuries. The Surfer's most telling showing against the Hulk saw him fighting equally with him physically while the Power Cosmic was massively dampened.
Gladiator is a member of the Strontian species and is, classically, the leader of the Shi'ar Empire's Imperial Guard. He possesses all the powers that Superman has, but at a higher level and with more aggression behind them (he's basically a major Superman analog, and his real name, "Kallark", is a portmanteau or "Kal-El" and "Clark Kent"). He is also considerably stronger than the Hulk is.
Gladiator once hit Wonder Man so hard that the hero stated his head would have come off if he hadn't rolled with the punch. He also pummelled that same hero into the core of a planet from its surface with a single punch. He has destroyed a planet with a single punch, and even kicked Mjolnir across a city, moving it a considerable distance in spite of the fact that he isn't worthy of wielding it. Moreover, Gladiator also has incredible levels of super-speed, enabling him to put more force behind his hits, which considerably aids the level of physical force he can dish out.
Honestly, a major reason he hasn't been introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe is that he may be too powerful.
2 Captain Universe
Captain Universe is not actually a person. It's the physical manifestation of the concept known as the Uni-Power in the Marvel universe. Once it possesses a noble host in times of crisis, it grants said host immense power for the purpose of protecting the universal balance. That power generally includes enormous super-strength on a level that even the Hulk can't match.
The Uni-Power has merged with a number of individuals over the years. In fact, when it possessed Spider-Man, the Webbed Wonder was able to send the Hulk to the moon with a single punch, winning the physical battle with him there and then. A Uni-Power-imbued Sue Storm was able to beat down the aforementioned Gladiator, and that's someone who can survive an explosion powerful enough to destroy half a solar system.
To prove it doesn't require the character it possesses to already have power, on another occasion, the Uni-Power possessed an ordinary citizen named William Nguyen, who had lost his job when the Juggernaut's rampage destroyed the building he worked in. Nguyen was able to knock the Juggernaut out in a revenge attack, even though the Juggernaut is usually invulnerable to such attacks and has taken theHulk's punches without damage in the past.
1 Red Hulk
In January of 2008, a mysterious red version of the Hulk (unsurprisingly called "Red Hulk") first appeared in a Marvel comic book. Nobody knew who he was, until he was later revealed to be none other than General Thaddeus "Thunderbolt" Ross, who turned himself into the beast with the help of A.I.M. and Intelligencia in order to combat his long-time green adversary. While Hulk gets stronger as he gets angrier, Red Hulk gets hotter. This might seem to give Hulk the advantage in a battle of strength, but there are two things that ensure that's not actually the case. First, Red Hulk's base strength is superior to that of the Hulk's and, second, Red Hulk has a key ability that can ensure he's always stronger than his rival.
What is that ability? Well, Red Hulk can drain various types of energy in order to both enhance his own strength and sap that of his opponents. One of those energy types is gamma radiation, so Red Hulk should overpower the Hulk every time he fights him, by using the very energy that gives Hulk his strength to increase his own strength, while making the Hulk weaker. (Of course, bad writing and plot-induced stupidity hasn't always made that the case in the comics, but it doesn't change the facts.) The list of Red Hulk's accomplishments is an impressive one: he has destroyed a comet, withstood the pull of a black hole, punched A-Bomb so hard that it caused an earthquake, hurt beings as powerful as Uatu the Watcher and Omegex, and made an X-Men team consisting of Magneto, the Phoenix Force and dozens of mutants believe that they didn't have the power to restrain him. He's not just an alternatively colored knockoff, folks.
What other Marvel characters could outmuscle the Hulk? Let us know in the comments.