One of the most insanely popular characters in the Marvel universe is the Incredible Hulk, a mammoth mixture of man and rage monster, driven by an intense set of emotional issues, with nearly unlimited strength and invulnerability.
However, although Hulk might be the strongest there is, he’s not totally impervious to getting his giant green backside handed to him in a fight. Despite having the power to crush skulls into fine powder, here are seven characters from Marvel who could whoop up on the Jade Giant in hand-to-hand combat.
1. Iron Man
Tony “Shell Head” Stark has butted heads with the Green Beast on numerous occasions and has proven that he can deliver an epic beat down Hulk is sure to never forget.
Stark, using that huge melon between his shoulders, developed an armor called “Hulk Buster,” which is basically a mechanized replica of the almighty Strong One that can be used to, quite literally, knock his teeth out.
The only drawback, of course, is that Hulk doesn’t have a glass jaw and can clearly take a punch, so if Stark doesn’t knock him on his keister with a quickness, Hulk may drain the power from his suit.
There’ve been a lot of classic bouts between the Miniature Menace — Wolverine — and the World-Breaker, some of which were favorable to Hulk, while others ended with Wolvie’s hand raised high in victory.
In fact, Wolverine was once one of Apocalypse’s Horsemen, Death, and almost chopped Hulk’s head off, but a little Jiminy Cricket on his shoulder — a conscience — convinced him to spare the big, green lug.
Wolverine, while not impervious to pain, has an incredible healing factor, and his adamantium covered skeleton gives him some protection against the sheer force and might of Hulk. Combine those powers with his other fighting skills and razor sharp claws that can pierce anything and you have yourself quite a match.
Contrary to what the Marvel films lead us to believe, the actual comic book character of Thor is very, VERY powerful and is one of the ultimate powers in the universe. Given that fact, it’s safe to say he could give the not-so-Jolly-Green-Giant a run for his money.
Thor has immense strength, the ability to call down massive bolts of lightning, and flight, but that’s not all. He’s also a skillful warrior on the battlefield, so not only does he have amazing powers, but he knows how to use them too. This wit and know-how gives him an advantage over the Hulkster in one-on-one combat.
If the God of Thunder were to fully unleash on Hulk, there’s a very good chance he could one-up enough to score a victory.
4. Squirrel Girl
Now, I know what you must be thinking. How on God’s green earth could a mutant girl with a fluffy tail and the ability to talk to squirrels ever hope to go toe-to-toe with the insanely strong, totally unhinged Hulk and live to tell the tale?
Squirrel Girl has managed to defeat some of the toughest villains in the galaxy single-handed, and even put the smack down on Wolverine. How, pray tell, did she accomplish such a feat?
Well, believe it or not, Squirrel Girl — also known as Doreen Green — is incredibly intelligent, which in and of itself gives her a huge advantage over Hulk. She’s able to talk to her squirrel pals and arrange them into an army that systematically will take down threats using tactics rather than brute strength. Combine that with fantastic rodent-like acrobatics, and well, Hulk says “night, night.”
Just ask Thanos.
Sometimes you have to fight fire with fire, and when it comes to the Hulk, that means calling in his main competition in the Marvel universe: The Thing.
Thing, like Hulk, used to be a puny human until a space accident turned him into a giant rock monster with insane strength and invulnerability. Due to, you know, being a huge walking boulder and all.
Thing is one of the few Marvel characters who could take on the Jade Giant with fists only, without having to use some other sort of power to supplement his strength. If Thing gets Hulk cornered and uses his fighting skills sharply, he might just earn himself the title “strongest there is.”
6. Dr. Doom
Dr. Doom is one of the most devious, intelligent, and formidable villains in the Marvel universe, and those characteristics are precisely what gives him the edge over Hulk, as we all know the Big Guy is dumb as a box of rocks. Most of the time.
Doom would rely totally on intellect and his deep grasp of science in order to come up with something that would perhaps, enable him to be able to control Hulk’s mind, since we know that’s his Achilles heel.
Just imagine if Doom was able to use Hulk as a weapon of mass destruction against the heroes of the Marvel universe. He’d be almost impossible to stop.
Everyone’s favorite wallcrawler is actually highly underrated when it comes to taking on, the uh, shall we say, “larger” threats that fall upon his beloved New York City.
In close quarter combat, Hulk clearly has the advantage, but again, when it comes to brain-power, he’s simply no match for Peter Parker. Spidey would likely lure Hulk out of the city, away from highly populated areas where people and property could be damaged.
While there’s a million different ways Spider-Man could take Hulk out, the most effective would be a combination of cool tech and constant babbling and banter that would drive the poor rage monster to the brink of insanity, leaving him begging for mercy.