Classification: Terrestrial bio-constructs

Creator: Arnim Zola

User/Possessors: Arnim Zola

Enemies: Avengers (Beast, Captain America (Rogers), Captain Marvel (Rambeau), Thor, Wasp), Douglas Cartland, Mr. Fantastic, Dr. Hank Pym, She-Hulk

First Appearance: Avengers Annual#13 (1984)

Powers/Abilities/Functions: Numbering perhaps a dozen, the Pseudo-Hulks were created by Arnim Zola from cell samples taken from the Hulk, and were similar to clones. Identical in appearance to the actual Hulk, they were genetic duplicates that had much of his strength (Captain America estimated that they only had about 80% of the real Hulk's strength), but none of his spirit, and were virtually mindless. These Pseudo-Hulks were vulnerable to energy attacks, and their bodies could be burned out by the Wasp's stings or concentrated gamma rays.

The Pseudo-Hulks were grown from capsule "seeds" that were delivered by Zola's "birds".

Although destructive, the main purpose of the Pseudo-Hulks seemed to be to act as a distraction and to be the transport system for each one's "living pants", which Zola controlled remotely for the purpose of infiltrating Banner's lab.

(Avengers Annual#13 (fb) - BTS) - Prior to the Hulk's descent into a mindless state and his exile to another dimension (@ Incredible Hulk II#300), Bruce Banner had come up with several breakthrough inventions (including some advances in the biological sciences) at his lab in the Northwind Observatory in the Catskill Mountains. Wanting to obtain the secrets of Banner's discoveries, bio-fanatic Arnim Zola stole some cell samples that had been taken from the Hulk from a government storage depot. Zola used the samples to create his Pseudo-Hulks.

(Avengers Annual#13) - Wanting to secure Banner's inventions, Raymond Sikorski of the National Security Council sent a regular military battalion and dispatched a team of Avengers, along with Hank Pym, Mister Fantastic, the She-Hulk, and CTE employee Douglas Cartland, to Northwind to inspect the inventions. As the group went inside the lab, a flock of birds descended to the observatory grounds, pecking and scratching at the grass, and one planted a single "seed" from which was spawned the first Pseudo-Hulk. It emerged from the ground and attacked the lab. After a very brief battle with the heroes, the "Hulk" was blasted by the Wasp's sting, then it collapsed and died. As he observed these events from afar, Zola dispatched his birds with more "seeds".

  Hank Pym, Mister Fantastic, and the Beast conducted an autopsy on the "Hulk," finding the entire corpse had changed into a blackened state resembling charcoal, and they determined that it had not been the true Hulk. The Beast unintentionally passed a bio-probe over the "Hulk's" pants and was shocked to get a positive reading -- "They're alive!"

  The "living pants" captured Mister Fantastic and Hank Pym, and Zola revealed himself to the heroes as more of his Pseudo-Hulks began their rampage. Zola (controlling the amoeba-like "pants") slithered into the lab with his captives while the others battled the pseudo-lifeforms.

  Captain Marvel transformed into concentrated gamma rays and burned out some of the ersatz Hulks, then she flew to help Mister Fantastic and Pym break free. After locking the Zola-controlled blob behind a vault door while they were in the lab's master control chamber, Pym was able to jury-rig a device to track Zola's thought waves back to his own body (in his bio-craft disguised as a nearby mountain peak). Captain Marvel flew to the bio-craft and overloaded Zola's transmission equipment with electricity, then Thor joined in, striking the fake peak with his hammer. Zola's bio-craft took off, but the glass beaker containing the "seeds" had broken open, and three more Pseudo-Hulks were produced. They began to attack Zola -- driven to a frenzy, they would obey no master.

  The bio-craft plummeted into Pepacton Reservoir, and the Avengers found nothing left but bits of tattered bio-matter.

Comments: Created by Roger Stern, Steve Ditko and John Byrne.

Couldn't their ability to rapidly alternate in size also have been derived from the Decker Formula (created by the Golden Age Terror foe Decker in Mystic Comics#6)?

Profile by John Kaminski

The Pseudo-Hulks have no known connections to

"Living Pants"

The "living pants" were the garments worn by the Pseudo-Hulks. Resembling the familiar purple cloth pants of the Hulk, they were actually a bio-material that acted as a control mechanism for the Pseudo-Hulks, and they allowed Arnim Zola to see wherever they went. When the first Pseudo-Hulk was destroyed, Zola projected his consciousness into the bio-construct "pants," and even simulated his own face. As other Pseudo-Hulks were individually destroyed, the "pants" of each would flow off the corpse and join with the original mass controlled by Zola. Zola was able to control the amoeba-like blob's shape, and could also form hammer-like bludgeons.


--Avengers Annual#13



Pseudo-Hulk "seeds" and Zola's "birds"

Stored in a glass beaker aboard Zola's bio-craft, the "seeds" were capsules which could grow into doppelgangers of the Hulk.

The "birds" were apparently more of Zola's bio-constructs which he could command to distribute the "seeds".

--Avengers Annual#13






images: (without ads)
Avengers Annual#13, p26, pan1 (main image)

p18, pan3 (Pseudo-Hulk autopsy)
p15, pan4 (first Pseudo-Hulk)
p30, pan1 (Zola as "living pants")
p18, pan1 ("birds" and "seeds")

Avengers Annual#13 (1984) - Roger Stern (writer), Steve Ditko (pencils), John Byrne (inks), Mark Gruenwald (editor)

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

First Posted: 06/07/2004
Last Updated: 06/07/2004

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™  and © 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:

Special Thanks to for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!

Back to Items