In Avengers movie, Fury locked Loki in the Hulk's cage. The Hulk's cage was strong, but Fury wasn't confident about how the cage would hold up against Loki. So, he threatened Loki that even a single scratch on glass would drop the cage 30,000 feet.

Humans believed that Asgardians were immortal (Loki said it too). Loki wasn't Asgardian by birth, but I don't think Fury knew this secret. Even if he knew, it doesn't matter because Loki was still a god.

Why did Fury threaten Loki this way? What was in his mind? It seems like all Loki needed was to scratch the glass to get his freedom.

  • 1
    This isn't an answer to the question, but when I read the question this is what immediately came to mind. A woman in real life has survived a fall from even higher than 30000 feet, in fact due to terminal velocity numbers that means that it is possible for humans to survive falls from any height. I think that given the amount of physical abuse that Loki takes, he would most certainly have survived. The movie makes the common misconception that the higher you are the faster you'll be going at the end of your drop, this is not always the case.
    – NominSim
    Commented May 17, 2012 at 18:50
  • 1
    @NominSim Fine, but I don't think movie made the misconception. That woman would have either applied moves of skydiving or she was lucky. In the movie, you can see the "pseudo-random" motion of falling cage. Do you still think, air drag forces could drop its acceleration to zero?
    – user931
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 1:01
  • 1
    It's impossible to say, well I shouldn't say that I am sure a physics expert would be able to tell with a certain degree of certainty. However the pseudo-random motion would seem to indicate that it isn't very aerodynamic, which decreases the terminal velocity. Judging from the g-forces that Loki's body can take from the battle, almost certainly he could survive a fall even with minimal drag forces being exerted.
    – NominSim
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 1:14
  • The danger isn't the height alone, but the fact that he's in a huge cage, moving at the cage's terminal velocity, and weighing a huge amount. If an super-person can feel a punch, image what a massive falling cage feels like. Commented Aug 24, 2012 at 12:07
  • @Sachin Shekar - I don't know about a woman surviving a fall, but a US military pilot ejected and survived the fall without a parachute because trees slowed his fall after terminal velocity (he did break almost every bone in his body). I think trapped in a metal cage there would be no chance of survival.
    – The Fallen
    Commented Sep 27, 2012 at 15:24

6 Answers 6


The point of imprisoning Loki in the Hulk cage was to ensure he could not escape. Fury's threat to drop Loki 30,000 feet (5.6 miles) was to impress upon him the precarious nature of his imprisonment. He was not worried that Loki would scratch the glass. On the contrary, he wanted nothing but an excuse to jettison Loki into space and WANTED Loki to know that. What he wanted Loki to know was HE WAS NOT IN CHARGE HERE.

Nick Fury and Loki's exchange.

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From Nick Fury's point of view, he had already seen Loki looking pale and weak right after his arrival on Earth. From his perspective, the Asgardians were beings from another planet with advanced technology and amazing abilities. But they could be killed.

He was convinced that the cage could hold the Hulk and should certainly be able to hold Loki. Fury was certain that dropping from that altitude, locked in the Hulk cage should be able to kill Loki, just as the belief was it would kill the Hulk.

Unfortunately Loki had already planned for his escape and had no intention of being in the Hulk cage. Loki was already far ahead of his captors in his intent and his imprisonment was simply part of his plan.

  • 3
    I doubt dropping the cage would kill the Hulk. Commented Nov 13, 2012 at 21:27
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    @RoyalFlush - Based on the fact that he was already cast in the sequel, it's almost certain that he'd survive :-)
    – Valorum
    Commented Feb 3, 2014 at 18:27
  • could be lots of flashbacks....
    – Oldcat
    Commented Jul 10, 2015 at 0:26

Fury is a skeptic. He doesn't believe either Loki or Thor are immortal -- in the sense of unkillable -- although he and the rest of SHIELD seem prepared to accept that these individuals are the inspirations for the Norse gods and thus, they are at the very least very long-lived.

(It's also very clear from Thor that Asgardians can be killed, but Fury wasn't privy to any of the conversations where that might have come up).


The simple truth is, Loki wants to be there. He's not a prisoner in any meaningful sense. He allowed himself to be captured as a diversion from Selvig's team preparing to set up the Tesseract-driven portal atop Stark Tower; and also in hopes of using his powers of subtle manipulation to bring about the fight that happened on the Helicarrier. Despite being imprisoned, he knew what was going on at all times (in part via the scepter -- that's made clear during the all-hands argument in the lab) and was really pretty much in control of what was going on.

  • The spoiler wasn't really necessary..
    – user931
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:08
  • Any source of your 1st paragraph?
    – user931
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:08
  • The source is the movie Thor, as the answer indicates. Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:09
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    Fury's attitude, and the fact that SHIELD demonstrates repeatedly that it's focused on scientific explanations. He states clearly that he believes Hulk to be stronger than Loki, and at this stage, he also clearly believes that Hulk could be killed by the trap (Banner thinks otherwise, but it's never put to the test). Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:10
  • 1
    @SachinShekhar Fury shows up in the post-credits scene to talk with Eric.
    – phantom42
    Commented May 17, 2012 at 11:12

Thor would likely die or at least be severely hurt, and they are not immortal. The idea that they are immortal comes from human Norse mythology.

  • Loki's father the ice king was killed by Thor's father Odin.
  • Odin must go into the Odinsleep else he would die, and while in the sleep he is mortal.
  • Thor will inherit the thrown of Asgard when his father dies.
  • Oden (Thor's father) is the son of Bor and Bestla who are now died.

Why was Thor afraid of being trapped in the cage, and why did Nick Fury put Loki in the same cage? It's because the Hulk is the only known superhero to best an Asgardian. There are several comic books, television shows and even in the Avengers films where the Hulk beats up an Asgardian.

In one Marvel animated film Loki uses mind control over the Hulk, and uses him to attack Asgard. Where the Hulk destroys most of the city before Thor is able to break the mind control spell that Loki was using, but at one point in the film Thor tells another Asgardian that he expects to die when he faces the Hulk.

In the Marvel animated film Planet Hulk. The Hulk is outcast to another planet where he battles Beta Ray Bill. Beta Ray Bill is the only other character to ever receive his own Asgardian hammer of the Gods. The same weapon used by Thor. Beta Ray Bill is the only character to match Thor's strength and good will. Still, Hulk beats Beta Ray Bill to an inch of his life before he finally stops.

In the Avengers film Hulk beats up Thor, and would have won had a fighter jet not distracted him.

Loki traps Thor in the cage, because he does not know if Thor could get out. The cage can be ejected from the carrier, because Nick Fury knows it wouldn't hold the hulk. So it's not an indestructible cage. When the cage is ejected Thor struggles to get out, and at the last second manages to escape but is knocked out in the process.

Could it have killed him? Yes. Would it be guaranteed to kill him? No, but you if want to kill an Asgard. Send the Hulk after them.


Immortal is not the same thing as un-killable (invulnerable). An immortal being will not die of natural causes - old age - but that doesn't mean they cannot be killed. An Asgardian may be immortal (or near enough), but plenty seem to have died in War.

  • +1 A most excellent point. Sometimes the terminology in the questions gets in the way of an answer.
    – Stan
    Commented Jun 21, 2013 at 22:38
  • Read the question again...
    – user931
    Commented Jun 21, 2013 at 23:01

Fury remarks that even Gods can't survive a fall that high. Hence the threat.

Also,Thor himself probably wouldn't have survived the fall. That's (again,probably) why he decided to break the container and escape.

Also,Loki couldn't just "scratch" the glass. Thor himself couldn't break the glass initially with his hammer (back in the helicarrier).

  • It doesn't make sense... Humans BELIEVED that Asgardians were immortal. Read my second paragraph, again.
    – user931
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:03
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    Well then, Fury's statement was just an exception to the "immortality" rule then,wasn't it :/
    – lightsong
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:08
  • Was the last two paragraphs really necessary?
    – user931
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:28
  • And, with remarks word, you aren't answering. You're just re-phrasing the question..
    – user931
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:30
  • 2
    Yes, they were.
    – lightsong
    Commented May 16, 2012 at 18:31

Remember though there will be a slow down. Loki's in a metal cage, and should Loki attempt to go super or start shaking the cage about it could cause it to veer off a strait down path. Also, who says he will fall on land, as sometimes they flew above the ocean. And yes, the water could slow you down even from 30,000 feet, but the force of the 30,000 foot drop could cause him to go deep under the water before he comes to a complete stop. So even if he survives the hits, who said he could survive being underwater without being able to breathe, being a god or not?

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