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In Thor: Ragnarok we have a scene in which Thor is trying to access a computer in a Quinjet by saying his name in different ways. One of the ways is by calling himself "the strongest Avenger", which is unsuccessful. Then when Bruce Banner accesses the computer it says "Welcome, Strongest Avenger".

In the MCU the Avengers team consists of: Thor, Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow, Vision, Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye, War Machine, Quicksilver, and Falcon. A quick break down leads me into a few categories where we can narrow down the potential candidates for "strongest" (these are my own categories and opinion based on what I have seen in the films):

  • " Power Level 1", Human with attachments: Decidedly human and mortal and powers come from technology or weapons/martial skills: Iron Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye, War Machine, and Falcon
  • "Power Level 2", Mutant/Enchanced: Humans with different DNA or enhanced DNA, powers are "supernatural" but they are still mortal: Captain America, Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver
  • "Power Level 3", Non-Human: Decidedly not-human, mutates, or something else and powers "god-like", may be immortal: Thor, Hulk, and Vision

So in my own head the competition is between Thor, Hulk, and Vision.

My question is; is there anywhere in the Marvel canon that can give us an objective answer as to who is the "strongest", or was this just joke (either in-universe by Tony Stark or out-of-universe to make us laugh)? My preference would be within Earth-199999 or, if we cannot surmise an answer there, from Earth-616 (I don't need a different answer from every alternate universe).

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    By strongest, do you mean physically or strongest overall. Thor and Hulk are probably stronger than Vision but he can go intangible so they might not be able to beat him. Scarlett Witch is crazy powerful too in her way. She overpowered and controlled vision's density and she messed with Thor's brain. Total power, I'd say Scarlett. Physical strength Hulk, but Thor would naturally see himself that way because he's Thor. – userLTK Nov 18 '17 at 22:39
  • Wanda's powers are pretty vague at this point in the MCU. If they're anything like her comics counterpart, she could make it so the others never had powers in the first place. – KSmarts Nov 30 '17 at 20:49
  • I'm many years out of date regarding the details of Hulk canon in the comic books, but back in the 1980s I believe it was stated repeatedly (in volume 1 of "the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe," for instance) that if he gets angrier and angrier at something, and can't smash it with his fists, he keeps getting stronger and stronger as a result -- and that no hard-and-fast upper limit had ever been identified regarding just how strong he could get. In other words, the question of "how many tons can Hulk lift if he really tries?" did not have a fixed number as the answer. – Lorendiac Dec 11 '17 at 5:15
  • @userLTK - If we equate "strongest overall" to "not be able to beat him," this devolves into the basically unanswerable "Who'd win?" Captain America has held his own against much stronger opponents (he fought Hercules when Hercules joined the Avengers, and Hercules wasn't able to beat him; he and Iron Fist worked together to beat the Wrecking Crew and the Avengers' training room and won in IRON FIST (1975) (issue 12 or 13)). – RDFozz Dec 20 '17 at 3:48
  • As perversely tempting as it is to swan dive into the bottomless debate of this question within the comic books, I'm sticking to the MCU. In the MCU, I will grant the Hulk is the physically strongest hero. There is a moment in "The Avengers" movie that proves Thor is a very close contender: the Hulk is beginning to rampage on the helicarrier. Everyone is pooping themselves. The Widow calls for Thor. Thor arrives to hopefully contain the monster. The Hulk swings a haymaker that sends Thor thru a wall. Thor gets off the floor and...smiles. A WORTHY CHALLENGE! – Blaze Mar 4 at 16:01
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We have not seen what the real limits of the Avenger's powers are in the MCU, but Hulk seems to have an edge so far. He was shown to beat up Thor (and previously, Loki) with relative ease until Thor's thunder-god powers began to emerge. Even then, it's not clear if Thor could have actually won that fight, or merely stood his ground against Banner. I don't think we've ever seen Hulk fighting against Vision, or someone with an Infinity Stone, but we might get that answer as well in Infinity War.

Part of the problem is that Banner presumably "holds back", at least subconsciously, to prevent Hulk from running out of control. Hulk's strength relies on him getting angry, so the more Banner is able to manage and control his anger, the less we'll see of Hulk at his full strength.


If we look at the Earth-616 canon, though, the answer is easy: Hulk, no contest. In 616 canon, Hulk's physical strength is effectively infinite. The angrier he gets, the stronger he gets, so any other being he's fighting against would eventually be outmatched. Every character that has commented on it ranks Hulk at the top of the strongest beings in the entire universe: on the mutant threat scale he's Omega level, and in Nick Fury's secret intel files, he's power level "10+", and the Beyonder (a highly intelligent multiverse-aware being) claimed that Hulk's "potential" strength is limitless.

The only things in the universe stronger than Hulk are the literally omnipotent entities that represent abstract concepts, like Death or the Phoenix Force.

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In terms of pure strength we look at feats in canon. Thor got up after being pinned down by an energy field that had the weight of a 'score' of planets.

Thor Score of Planets Thor Annual 9 29 Thor Score of Planets Thor Annual 09 30

Hulk survived having the weight of a star dropped on him. A case could be made for saying as it appears as if he got to his feet, he lifting the weight of a star.

Hulk Tanks Weight of  Star Infinity 6 1 Hulk Tanks Weight of  Star Infinity 6 2 Hulk Tanks Weight of  Star Infinity 6 3

From the Marvel fact files:

Hulk Marvel Fact Files 5 31 Hulk Marvel Fact Files 5 32

  • While this has some nice information, it doesn't seem to come to a conclusion. – Skooba Feb 17 '18 at 12:56
  • The opening paragraph "The Hulk is the strongest hero in the world". On page 2, Anger Management: "Following exposure to the warp core on the planet Sakaar, the Hulk's strength increased to its highest ever level, outmatching the physical power of all of Earth's heroes". Thor is one of Earth's heroes therefore there is a definitive answer here. Hulk is the strongest Avenger. – Nullbreaker Feb 18 '18 at 14:02
  • "Hulk survived having the weight of a star dropped on him." If it really weighed as much as a star, it wouldn't so much fall on you as you and the planet you were standing on would fall onto it. – Shufflepants Feb 28 '18 at 19:20
  • We know. Comic books have their own physics. – Nullbreaker Mar 1 '18 at 23:05

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