Real Name: Igor Drenkov
Identity/Class: Normal Human
Occupation: Former Soviet spy
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Gargoyle (Yuri Topolov), Presence
Enemies: Bruce Banner/Hulk, Pantheon, Rick Jones, Winter Guard (Crimson Dynamo (Boris Vadim), Darkstar (Sasha Roerich), Red Guardian (Anton), Ursa Major)
Known Relatives: None
Aliases: Igor Sklar, Igor Starsky
Base of Operations: Formerly Soviet Union, formerly the Gamma Base, formerly prison, now unrevealed
First Appearance: Incredible Hulk I#1 (May, 1962)
Powers/Abilities: While he has no real powers, Igor is an expert on gamma radiation and is trained in espionage.
History: At some point, Igor was sent by the Soviet Union as a spy to obtain information on the gamma bomb designed by Bruce Banner.
(Incredible Hulk I#1) - Igor stood alongside Bruce Banner and General Ross during the test of the gamma bomb, which created the Hulk. Prior to the test of the bomb, Igor told Bruce that he didn't want him to test the bomb since he never showed Igor his notes for him to check. Igor got quite confrontational with Bruce, but Bruce would not tell him the secret of the gamma bomb. A short while later, Bruce Banner saw a kid (Rick Jones) driving on the testing range only seconds before the bomb was to be detonated. He instructed Igor to stop the countdown while he went to get the kid to safety. Igor thought about it, and decided that this would be his way to get rid of Bruce Banner once and for all. Igor let the count continue, the bomb was detonated, and Bruce was bathed in gamma rays and was transformed into the Hulk.
Igor wasted no time, and as soon as he thought that Bruce Banner was dead, he went to Bruce's cottage and started rummaging through everything, searching for the gamma ray formula. Igor then saw the Hulk and shot him. Hulk simply smashed Igor's gun and threw him. Soldiers soon entered, after Hulk had changed back into Bruce, and found Igor. They assumed (quite unprofessionally) that Igor was in league with Hulk, and they took him to a hospital.
Igor sat in a cell and sent a report of the Hulk's existence to the Gargoyle back in the Soviet Union, using a miniature transistor short-wave that he had on his thumbnail.
(bts)- Igor apparently got out of prison and left the country.
(Incredible Hulk II#393) - Igor woke up to find himself somehow in the inactive Gamma Base. Igor was very confused, and became even more confused when he heard Bruce Banner giving him orders about the gamma bomb again. Igor thought that maybe he was in a nightmare, or maybe he was dead. Igor heard Bruce order him to stop the countdown again, and Bruce went and ran onto the field to save the kid, just as he did so many years ago. Igor, thinking that he still needed to complete his mission, let the bomb go off again. He then went to Banner's lab to search for the papers, only to have the Hulk barge in. The Hulk, in his merged incarnation, had set up Igor, and tricked him into believing it was all happening again on the anniversary of the actual bomb that made the Hulk, to see if he would let the bomb go off again. Hulk dropped the act, and decided to extract vengeance on Igor for all the pain that he had gone through thanks to Igor not stopping the bomb. After being sidetracked by the People's Protectorate, Hulk caught Igor and took him to the place where the gamma bomb was detonated. Igor then began to laugh, and said that he was guilty for creating a creature of destruction, but also took credit for all the things the Hulk has done over the years on the side of good. Igor then said that he dreamed the same dream every night, and that he thinks he is dead, since he has suffered so much and no one can suffer that much and survive. Igor went insane.
(Hulk: Winter Guard#1 (fb) - BTS) - The Presence took former spy Igor Drenkov with him and mutated him into a gamma-powered protoplasmic monstrosity, to investigate his daughter's seeming return from the dead. They were attacked by the Winter Guard (Crimson Dynamo (Vadim), Darkstar (Sasha Roerich), Red Guardian (Anton), Ursa Major).
(Hulk: Winter Guard#1) - The Winter Guard fought Drenkov while Presence found out that Roerich wasn't actually his daughter. Drenkov devoured Crimson Dynamo (Vadim), but when Red Guardian knocked Presence out long enough for Darkstar to attack Drenkov, she overstrained her powers to devour Drenkov bit by bit and sent him into the Dark Matter Dimension.
Comments: Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
Very, very few people have ever heard of this guy, but he is one of the most important characters in Marvel Comics history. If it weren't for him, there would be no Hulk, who is a legend (and one of my favorite characters ever). If there were no Hulk, the Avengers would have no reason to form, at least at that time. Who knows what else would have gone differently. On top of that, he was the first person that Hulk manhandled.
Igor first appeared in May 1962, and then had an absence of 30 years before appearing again in May 1992. Will we ever see him again? Who knows? If this trend continues, then he will appear again in the year 2022.
Incredible Hulk Annual 1999 retells Incredible Hulk I#1, as if Igor were actually a Skrull. John Byrne wrote this story, much like he did Spider-Man: Chapter One, altering continuity as he went. It told an interesting story, and might fit in ok if not for Hulk II#393. I'm considering the Hulk Annual as an out-of-continuity or alternate reality tale.
I believe that the 1999 Annual was retconned into being only a "comic book version" of the "real" Hulk's origin by Peter David in Captain Marvel V#2, when Rick Jones reads it in a comic book and laughs.
Igor's last name was first given in Incredible Hulk I#145; he was misidentified as "Igor Starsky" in the Hulk entry for Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe I#5.
CLARIFICATIONS: Igor Drenkov has no connection to:
images: (without ads)
Incredible Hulk I#1, p15, pan1 (Igor Drenkov main image)
Hulk: Winter Guard#1, p5, pan1 (mutated)
Incredible Hulk I#1 (May, 1962) - Stan Lee (writer/editor), Jack Kirby (pencils), Paul Reinman (editor)
Incredible Hulk II#393 (May, 1992) - Peter David (Writer), Dale Keown (artist), Bobbie Chase (editor)
Hulk: Winter Guard#1 (February, 2010) - David Gallaher (writer), Steve Ellis (artist), Jordan D. White (editor)
Last updated: 12/29/04
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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