• The Hulk has no shortage of great storylines in Marvel Comics, but 10 are definite standouts.
  • Hulk’s greatest hits range from stories that highlight his earthbound significance, as well as those that delve into his cosmic and even supernatural sides.
  • From
    Immortal Hulk
    , these are 10 of the best
    stories in Marvel Comics history.

The Hulk is one of the most iconic superheroes in Marvel Comics canon, and for good reason. Not only has the Hulk been around since the early ‘60s, but he’s also had an immeasurable impact on the Marvel Universe as fans know it today. Hulk was one of the founding members of the Avengers, he’s proven his mettle against the greatest heroes and villains Marvel has to offer, and he’s had no shortage of spectacular solo-stories throughout his publication history.

Many fans might think that the Hulk is a fairly two-dimensional character, even when considering his constant struggles with Bruce Banner, but Marvel Comics has consistently shown that’s not the case. Hulk lore runs deep in Marvel canon, with stories that show the Hulk as more than just a super-strong rage-monster, but someone with deep-cut ties to the earthbound, cosmic, and supernatural sides of the Marvel Universe.

The Hulk is a vehicle for fans of practically any genre, with each story expanding more of the character’s personal mythos in the wider Marvel Comics canon.

Whether one is a fan of horror, Sci-Fi, or just good old-fashioned action/adventure, the Hulk is the perfect character to take those literary rides with. Here are 10 of the best Hulk stories in Marvel Comics history!


Hulk Is Body Horror Nightmare Fuel as New Villain Scrambles His Powers

The Hulk just faced an all-new villain with the ability to scramble, and even steal, the Hulk’s powers – and he does so in truly horrific fashion.

10 A Retelling of the Hulk’s Origin is Perfect for Fans of Gritty, Grounded Storytelling

Hulk: Gray by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

Gray Hulk coming staring directly at you.

While the Hulk is so often portrayed as being larger than life (in every sense), Hulk: Gray brings the character back down to Earth in a way that more accurately portrays the truly tragic nature of the Hulk. As alluded to in the title, Hulk: Gray recounts Bruce Banner’s first transformation into the Hulk (when the Green Goliath was actually the Gray Goliath) as well as the events that transpired immediately afterward, when Banner was on the run from the U.S. military.

The entire story is told through flashback, as Bruce Banner discusses these moments of his and Hulk’s shared life with his friend and psychiatrist, Doc Sampson. This method of storytelling successfully puts Banner’s voice at the forefront of the series in a way many other Hulk stories fail to do. The miniseries is also drenched in gray, enhancing the somber tone of the entire tale.

Hulk: Gray has plenty of action, to be sure, but it’s not portrayed as fun or adventurous, but deeply sad, as it’s shown through the lens of a truly broken man who was forever changed by an unimaginable catastrophe.

9 The Introduction of Professor Hulk Changed the Character’s Lore Forever

The Incredible Hulk #377 by Peter David and Dale Keown

Professor Hulk duel-wielding massive guns.

Professor Hulk is the amalgamation of all the personalities that exist within Bruce Banner’s mind who were given life after his exposure to gamma radiation upon his debut. After an intense psychotherapy session with Doc Sampson – who actually found a way to speak with all of Banner’s identities at once – Bruce, Hulk, and Joe Fixit (Gray Hulk) realized they would all benefit from coming together into one conjoined personality as opposed to remaining separate, and the result was Professor Hulk.

Professor Hulk ended up having a long-standing presence in Marvel Comics lore, as he was the primary ‘Hulk’ for many years. This iteration of the character was the physical manifestation of Hulk’s greatest potential, as he had all the strength of Hulk, all the confidence of Fixit, and all the intelligence of Banner.

While the character would eventually revert to the norm, Professor Hulk changed Hulk lore forever, and has even helped shape the current live-action depiction of the character in the MCU, which only confirms how impactful this storyline truly is.

8 1 ‘Hulk Versus’ Fight Stands Above the Rest in Terms of Sheer Gruesome Brutality

Ultimate Wolverine vs Hulk by Damon Lindelof and Leinil Francis Yu

Hulk ripping Wolverine in half in the Ultimate Universe.

There is no shortage of incredibly gruesome fight scenes between the Hulk and any given enemy in Marvel Comics, but one that has to stand above the rest is the Hulk’s battle against Wolverine in Ultimate Wolverine vs Hulk. The very purpose of the original Ultimate Universe was to push the envelope in ways the main Marvel continuity couldn’t, as the publisher generally creates comics for readers of all ages, especially in regard to A-list characters like the Hulk. But the Ultimate Universe was designed specifically to tell those more graphic and hyper-violent stories – and this one was no exception.

There’s nothing flashy about this storyline; Wolverine is sent to kill the Hulk (who was downright evil upon his debut in the Ultimate Universe), and the Hulk fights back viciously. One of the opening pages alone depicted the Hulk ripping Wolverine in half, which only set the tone for the graphic violence that would follow.

Many fans gravitate toward the Hulk because the nature of his existence implies hyper-violence, and there are few Hulk stories more violent than this one.

7 Hulk Wields Untold Cosmic Power After Receiving a God-Tier Upgrade

Fear Itself by Matt Fraction and Stuart Immonen

Hulk wielding the Hammer of Nul in Fear Itself.

The Hulk is a powerful Marvel Comics character, to be sure, but he’s arguably never been as powerful as he is in Fear Itself. In that storyline, the Hulk comes across the Hammer of Nul, one of seven Asgardian war hammers summoned by the Serpent, who did so to awaken the strongest warriors of Midgard known as the ‘Worthy’. The Hulk was one of these chosen few, as the Hammer of Nul called to him once it made landfall on Earth, and the Hulk received his god-tier upgrade without first understanding how totally it would corrupt him.

The Hammer of Nul turned the Hulk into a weapon of planetary destruction, and while the Green Goliath can achieve that level of strength without a mystical hammer, he’s still never felt power quite like this – before or since.

A major draw to Hulk comics is the spectacle of seeing how powerful the Jade Giant can become, and Fear Itself fulfills that particular desire in spades.

6 Hulk Fans Get to See What Would Become of the World if Their Hero was a True Villain

Maestro by Peter David, Germán Peralta, and Dale Keown

Maestro sitting on his throne as a future dictator.

While Future Imperfect introduced fans to Maestro – an alternate future version of the Hulk who became the evil dictator of the world – the 2020 miniseries Maestro actually delves deeper into the character than the original storyline. Not only that, but 2020’s Maestro is done by the same creative team as Future Imperfect (with the addition of artist Germán Peralta), so fans know what they’re getting is a true continuation/elaboration of Maestro’s story, as opposed to potential retcons or reimaginings.

Maestro shows readers exactly how the one-time heroic Hulk became an evil dictator following a supposed armageddon – and some of the things he does for the sake of power are downright shocking. Heartless betrayals, brutal assassinations, and absolute ruthlessness writes Maestro’s legacy in Marvel Comics canon, and all of that is brilliantly detailed in this miniseries.

After reading 2020’s
, fans should immediately follow up with the original Future Imperfect, as that’s a phenomenal saga as well, and brings the entire story full-circle!

5 Hulk Delivers a Captivating Murder-Mystery with a Legendary Payoff

Red Hulk SagaHulk Vol. 2 #1 by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness

Red Hulk screaming with fire burning in his mouth.

The Abomination has been murdered, and one of the few clues the superhero investigators have to go on is a Hulk-sized footprint next to the villain’s corpse, along with the single-word testimony from the only witness: “Red”. This was the beginning of the Red Hulk Saga which lasted all the way until Hulk Vol. 2 #22, ending with the startling revelation that the mysterious Red Hulk is actually the one man who hated the original Hulk most of all: General Ross.

This storyline is more than just a murder-mystery, but an era-defining moment in Hulk lore. Not only was the Abomination – a mainstay Hulk villain who’s been around for decades – murdered (and actually stayed that way for a long time), but the Red Hulk Saga also introduced an entirely new Hulk to the mix, one who was capable of committing such a murder. Add to that readers’ collective shock upon the realization that “Thunderbolt” Ross was the Red Hulk all along, and fans have one amazing Hulk storyline that won’t soon be forgotten.

4 Hulk Finds a New Side to Himself After Experiencing Profound Betrayal & Ultimate Acceptance

Planet HulkIncredible Hulk Vol. 2 #92-#105 (main event) by Greg Pak and Carlo Pagulayan

Hulk fighting as a gladiator on Sakaar in Planet Hulk.

Planet Hulk may be one of, if not the most impactful storylines in Hulk mythos. It begins with humanity’s breaking point when it comes to how long they were willing to tolerate the Hulk, as he is sent off-world to a faraway planet by the very heroes he once thought were his allies. Initially, this betrayal sent Hulk spiraling, even causing him to rampage in the spaceship the Illuminati sent him away in. However, once he arrived at the alien world of Sakaar, the Hulk found a world where he was actually accepted by those around him.

Hulk was a gladiator, a champion, and even a revolutionary leader on Sakaar, where he also found the love of his life, and even started a family. Hulk finds acceptance on Sakaar the likes of which were not possible on Earth, but beyond that, Hulk discovers a new piece of himself (literally).

Planet Hulk gave life to another Hulk personality, the Green Scar, who would later come to be known as World Breaker Hulk – and that added personality would be a lasting aspect of the Hulk’s character all the way up until some of his most recent storylines.

3 Hulk Proves His Rage is Strong Enough to Shake the Entire Planet in His Most Beloved Storyline

World War Hulk – a Marvel-wide event that began in World War Hulk Prologue: World Breaker by Peter David, Al Rio, Lee Weeks, and Sean Phillips

World Breaker Hulk sitting on a throne in World War Hulk.

World War Hulk is perhaps the number one storyline Hulk fans point to as their most beloved of all time, as it is the one that holds nothing back when it comes to the limit of Hulk’s rage-fueled strength. After Hulk’s family is killed on Sakaar, he believes the Illuminati to be responsible, so he travels back to his home planet with one cold-blooded goal: kill every member of the Illuminati. In his quest for vengeance, the Hulk shakes the entire planet, and earns the moniker of his newly-acquired personality: World Breaker.

The Hulk leaves nothing but death and destruction in his wake while hunting down the ‘heroes’ who sent him off-world and allegedly killed his family (which the Hulk later discovers was not done by the Illuminati). But more than that, this storyline shows fans for the first time – without the aid of mystical artifacts or power-enhancements – how insanely powerful the Hulk truly is, making World War Hulk an absolute must-read for fans of the character.

2 Hulk Lore Gets Redefined Upon Delving Into His Previously Unexplored Supernatural Side

Immortal Hulk by Al Ewing and Joe Bennett

Hulk, Abomination, and the Leader, among other characters, looking up at the One Below All.

It’s fair to say that Immortal Hulk is perhaps the greatest Hulk story that’s ever been told. Not only does it contain blood-soaked action that pushes the Hulk’s strength to its limits, but it also uncovers secrets about the character fans didn’t even know were kept hidden. Immortal Hulk reveals that gamma is a supernatural substance that’s directly linked to a hellish underworld called the Below Place. Those who have been mutated by gamma are always destined to go to the Below Place when they die, though they can come back to life by walking through the ‘Green Door’.

The Hulk is immortal in this storyline just as he’s always effectively been, and Immortal Hulk explains the horrific reason why that’s the case. The Hulk isn’t a product of science fiction, but rather supernatural fiction, as his powers are of otherworldly origin. Plus, this series delves into the childhood trauma Bruce Banner experienced by the hand of his father, which is seamlessly woven into the driving narrative of the book.

Immortal Hulk is an incredibly well-crafted 50-issue series that expands his lore beyond anything fans thought possible, all while telling an exciting Hulk story fans of the more grounded take on the character will enjoy.

1 Hulk is Currently Embarking on One of His Most Exciting & Horrific Adventures to Date

The Incredible Hulk Vol. 4 by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Nic Klein

The Hulk being attacked by an eldritch horror.

One aspect of Hulk lore that often gets left by the wayside is the horror element of his mythos. Even the body horror of his transformations is generally understated in many Marvel Comics storylines, as well as the visceral terror of having a literal ‘Mr. Hyde’ living within one’s psyche. However, the Hulk’s current ongoing title makes up for that in spades – and then some. Right now, in The Incredible Hulk, Hulk and Banner are at odds, as the Hulk wants to make Banner’s life as excruciating as possible. This, while Hulk is being pursued by the Eldest, an eldritch horror as old as the Earth itself, who wants to capture the Hulk to awaken the Mother of Horrors.

Every issue shows the Hulk battling a Lovecraftian monster more horrifying than the last, all while acting as Bruce Banner’s own personal demon himself. The writing is captivating, the new villains are interesting, and the artwork is absolutely phenomenal, as the creative team behind this latest Hulk run has successfully turned this Sci-Fi hero into a true horror icon. That’s why this is one of the 10 best Hulk stories in Marvel Comics history.

  • Hulk

    Created By:
    Stan Lee, Jack Kirby

    First Appearance:
    The Incredible Hulk (1962)

    Robert Bruce Banner

    Avengers, Defenders, Horsemen of Apocalypse, Fantastic Four, Pantheon, Warbound, S.M.A.S.H., Secret Avengers


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