Betty Ross as herself (left) and as Red She-Hulk (right) on the cover of Red She-Hulk #58 (October 2012), her first self titled issue.
|First appearance||The Incredible Hulk #1 (1962) (as Betty Ross)
The Incredible Hulk #168 (1973) (as Harpy)
Hulk vol. 2 #15 (2009) (as Red She-Hulk)
|Created by||Betty Ross:
|Full name||Elizabeth "Betty" Ross-Banner|
|Team affiliations||Defenders (as Red She-Hulk)|
|Notable aliases||Elizabeth Ross-Talbot, Harpy, Mr. Blue, Red She-Hulk|
(As Red She-Hulk)
Elizabeth "Betty" Ross (later Betty Talbot and then Betty Banner) is a fictional character created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. She made her first appearance in Incredible Hulk #1 (1962) as a romantic interest of the Hulk (Dr. Bruce Banner) and is the daughter of General Thunderbolt Ross.
Over the years, the character has undergone multiple transformations, turning into the villainess Harpy in Incredible Hulk #168 (1973) and into the antiheroine Red She-Hulk (or She-Rulk) in Hulk vol. 2 #15 (2009).
Publication history 
Betty Ross debuted in The Incredible Hulk #1 (May 1962) by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. Ross made her first appearance as Harpy in The Incredible Hulk #168 (October 1973) by Steve Englehart and Herb Trimpe. In 1989, Betty Ross Banner received an entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Update '89 #1.
In Hulk vol. 2 #15 (September 2009), she for the first time appears as Red She-Hulk, who was created by writer Jeph Loeb and artist Ed McGuinness. Loeb said, "We've been very careful with the creation of this character. We wanted to make sure she didn't come off as silly-my memory of the introduction to [the original] She-Hulk-before anyone had read a page. But the character was a completely different take on the Hulk, a Hulk we'd never seen before. Jen [Walters] is a wonderful character. Our intention is [that] Red She-Hulk will make an equally important impression on the Marvel Universe [sic]."
Red She-Hulk became a member of the superhero team the Defenders in Defenders vol. 4 #1 (December 2011) by writer Matt Fraction and artist Terry Dodson. Fraction said, "The way I write her is somewhere between Indiana Jones and Johnny Knoxville; after a lifetime of being fought over and treated like a human football, she's [now] seven foot tall and 62-52-62 or whatever and bulletproof. She goes around leaving these Betty-shaped holes in the wall."
In October 2012, as part of Marvel NOW!, Hulk was retitled Red She-Hulk' starting with issue #58 by writer Jeff Parker and artist Carlo Pagulayan. About the series Parker said, "She's become convinced of a threat to humanity which is essentially, all people like her. She's conflicted over losing her own human side, and she's acting out on a large scale based on that. But the thing is she may well be right."
Fictional character biography 
||This article's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (May 2013)|
The only daughter of General Thaddeus E. "Thunderbolt" Ross, Betty spends her formative years firmly under her father's strict supervision. After her mother died during Betty's teenage years, she is sent away to boarding school. After graduating, the introverted young woman returns to her father's side while he is in charge of a top-secret project to create a new type of weapon involving gamma radiation. The head scientist on the project was Robert Bruce Banner.
Banner is caught in the detonation of a gamma radiation bomb and becomes the Incredible Hulk. Banner's efforts to keep his condition a secret from Betty alienates her from him. She was then romantically pursued by Major Glenn Talbot, the new aide attached to her father's Hulkbuster task force.[volume & issue needed]
After his dual identity becomes public knowledge and Banner gains control over his transformations, Betty becomes engaged to Banner. During the wedding ceremony, the Hulk's archenemy the Leader causes Banner to transform into the savage Hulk. General Ross is seriously injured when the Hulk ran amok.
Believing Banner to be lost forever to her as a potential husband, Betty married Glenn Talbot. While Betty and Talbot were on their honeymoon, her father is captured and sent to a Soviet prison. Talbot takes part in a successful rescue mission, but is captured in the process and believed dead.
It was at this time that the villain M.O.D.O.K. came across her saw her condition and kidnapped and hypnotized her because he wanted to create a weapon powerful enough to defeat the Hulk, by subjecting her to gamma radiation, more than what Banner was subjected to, and transforms her into the insane and lethal Harpy creature.
The Harpy broke forward from a containment shell and immediately went after the Hulk. MODOK told the Harpy where to find the Hulk and she flew off in search of him, she first ambushes him and then the two of them fight each other to a standstill. Right when the Hulk is about to hit her while she's down, she tells him she's Betty, while Hulk is shocked and confused by her claim, she blasts him and knocks him out.
General Ross sees the Harpy and the Hulk fighting on TV and recognizes Harpy as his daughter Betty. He makes it to the battlesite and rushes to talk to her right before she blasts the Hulk, he tries to talk her down, and just when it seems to be working, MODOK's brainwashing start to take affect on her again, and she grabs the Hulk and flies away. Military jets take off after her but she manages to destroy one of them, before anything else can happen, a tornado appears out of nowhere and graps the Harpy and unconscious Hulk, the tornado disappears and drops the two of them off on a city in the sky. The city is home to the Bi-Beast, he steps out and reveals himself to them, after which both Harpy and Hulk attack him. The Bi-Beast manages to knock the Harpy unconscious and the Hulk reverts to Bruce Banner, Bi-Beast tells Banner he brought them there to keep him company but then asks Banner to try and repair the machines that cause his city to float. Banner agrees to help, and figures he can use the advanced equipment to help Betty at the same time. He goes to find the Bi-Beast and finds him trying to talk to the Harpy, who is trapped in a cage, Banner says he'll help repair the equipment if the Bi-Beast lets him take the Harpy with him, to which Bi-Beast agrees. Banner puts some equipment together which he thinks will cure Betty, but unbeknownst to him, MODOK came about the island and tricked the Bi-Beast into thinking Bruce was going to do him harm. The Bi-Beast attacks Banner just as he hits the switch to start the equipment, after that a fight ensues as Banner gets mad and becomes the Hulk and then MODOK doublecrosses the Bi-Beast and attacks him too. As the Bi-Beast hits the self-destruct button as a last resort, the Hulk turns back to Banner and goes to search for Betty, he finds her in the equipment and she still hasn't turned back to normal, thinking that it didn't work, nevertheless he grabs her and they make a run for it as the island falls apart. Banner, as the Hulk, rescues them both as they land, while at the same time parts of a building land on the Harpy as they run and when the dust clears, it is revealed that the Harpy has reverted to Betty Ross.
Unknown to Betty, her father and everyone else, Talbot was still alive and being held prisoner by the Gremlin at Bitterfrost, a top secret Soviet installation in Siberia. A man named Gregori Kronski was subjected to surgery that made him a double of Talbot. The Gremlin used his Psiclone device to imprint the memories and personality of Talbot in Kronski's mind, and those of Kronski's in Talbot's. Kronski was then sent to the United States, claiming to be an escaped Talbot. However, a bomb was concealed within Kronski's body. Gremlin's plan was to use the bomb to assassinate the President of the United States when the latter came to visit Gamma Base, where Talbot was stationed. Colonel Jack D. Armbruster saved the President's life, but both Armbruster and Kronski were killed when the bomb exploded. The real Talbot was eventually later rescued by General Ross, Clay Quartermain and the Hulk.[volume & issue needed]
During his time in captivity by the Gremlin, Talbot was made into a mindless husk. In order to unblock Talbot's mind, Doctor Leonard Samson had the Hulk (who was Banner under control by a special helmet) unblock what was keeping him in a mindless state. The process was a success. However, The Talbots' marriage later became strained.[volume & issue needed]
When General Ross suffered a nervous breakdown, Talbot returned to the military as a Colonel and it was later revealed that he had fired a ray gun that sent the Hulk to the Sub-Atomic universe after the Hulk stormed into Gamma Base looking for Jarella, now deceased, who was cryogenically frozen. This incident proved to be the last straw in Talbot's already deteriorating relationship with Betty, and their marriage later ended in divorce. Blaming the failure of his marriage on Banner, whom he also tried to have court-martialed, Talbot died in Japan while trying to destroy the Hulk there while piloting the War Wagon prototype. Betty admitted to Rick Jones afterwards that she had never stopped loving Banner all the while she was married to Talbot.[volume & issue needed]
When Betty learned that her father conspired with M.O.D.O.K. to kill the Hulk, Betty accused him of treason. Realizing Betty was right, Ross nearly committed suicide and then disappeared.[volume & issue needed]
Banner again achieved a state in which he could control his transformations and maintain his normal personality and intelligence while in the form of the Hulk. But this time, however, Betty was upset because she wanted Banner to be rid of the Hulk, not to control him, and left him once again. Banner then briefly became romantically involved with his new assistant and S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Dr. Katherine "Kate" Waynesboro. But due to the influence of the evil dream demon Nightmare, he once again lost control over the Hulk, who had become more savage than ever before, and his relationship with Kate ended shortly after.[volume & issue needed]
The Hulk disappeared from Earth for an extended period, and Betty began dating a man named Ramon. Upon learning that the Hulk had been sighted on Earth once again, Betty left Ramon and returned to Gamma Base, where the Hulk was subjected to a process that split Banner and the Hulk into separate entities. Believing himself finally cured, Banner proposed to Betty, and she accepted. Betty's father appeared at the wedding, armed with a gun and demanding that the marriage not take place before shooting Rick Jones, who tried to stop him. Courageously, Betty confronted her father, accusing him of domineering her throughout her life, as well as calling him out on his hostility towards Banner over the years, and cowered him into surrendering the gun. Then finally, Banner and Betty were pronounced husband and wife.[volume & issue needed]
However, Banner began dying as a result of being physically separated from the Hulk. The two were secretly merged once more and Betty soon discovered this. General Ross later died before his daughter's eyes when he sacrificed his life to destroy an unnamed mutant that nearly killed both Betty and Banner seeking a strong host to be parasitically linked to.[volume & issue needed]
Betty later became distraught on learning that Banner had sometimes consciously triggered his transformation in the past and was even now willing to become the Hulk in order to deal with very menacing threats. Betty left her husband and returned to Ramon, but then changed her mind and abandoned Ramon as well. She was then captured by the Leader, who set her free after learning that she was pregnant with Banner's child, but after being tormented with terrible nightmares by the demons Nightmare and D'Spayre, Betty loses her unborn baby.
She was eventually reunited with Banner, but soon afterward the Hulk seemingly perished in a tremendous explosion at Gammatown. Believing Banner and the Hulk dead, Betty left for New York City, where she eventually began training to become a nun. Betty spent some months in a convent to recover from the ordeal, but eventually reunites with Banner. They spent years living together as fugitives until the Hulk's enemy Abomination used his own blood to poison Betty, which would appear to be the work of the Hulk himself (due to the high levels of gamma radiation present in both of their bodies). Betty was placed in cryogenic suspension by her father.[volume & issue needed]
In a later retconned storyarc, Betty was seemingly revived by the Leader; underwent surgery which considerably altered her appearance; was granted superhuman strength; and for a time aided her fugitive husband as his shadowy contact Mr. Blue.[volume & issue needed]
The "Tempest Fugit" story arc explains her resurrection as a reality-distorting hallucination created by Nightmare, and also introduces Betty's daughter Daydream, supposedly magically conceived when the entity raped her in her sleep. This version of events was confirmed in stories by later writers.
Red She-Hulk 
During the 2010 "Fall of the Hulks" storyline, Betty Ross is revealed to have been resurrected by the Leader and MODOK, due to the urgings of their new ally, her father Thunderbolt Ross, who had previously kept her body in cryonic stasis. She also undergoes the same process that turned her father into the Red Hulk, which grants her vast superhuman physical power. The now villainous Doc Samson also helps Leader to brainwash Betty into an extremely confused and aggressive state.[volume & issue needed] Ross' allies are aware of his intentions to betray them and send Betty, as the "Red She-Hulk", to help assassinate her father, who was hunting the mercenary Domino, after she witnessed him transform from his human form. Their encounter ended with Red She-Hulk kicking Red Hulk off the Empire State Building.
After Ross fakes his own death, Betty also appears as herself at his "funeral", accompanied by a Life Model Decoy of Glenn Talbot to constantly monitor and control her, and expresses distrust of Bruce due to his recent marriage to Caiera on Sakaar and his subsequent attack on Manhattan. During the 2010 "World War Hulks" storyline, after Skaar stabs her with his sword, the new She-Hulk reverts to her human form, officially revealing her true identity. Betty explains how she was brought back to life, and asks that Bruce allow her to die. However, when Samson arrives, Betty's anger at his betrayal transforms her back into the Red She-Hulk, thus healing her injuries. Now once again in control of her own mind Betty (as Red She-Hulk) helps Bruce/Hulk to reconcile with his son Skaar. When Bruce gains the upper hand in the ensuing final battle against Ross, Betty becomes worried for her father, which, combined with her heightened aggression when transformed, leads into conflict with the original She-Hulk, who prevails. After Ross is defeated and imprisoned, Betty nonetheless convinces Bruce to grant her father an opportunity for rehabilitation and redemption.
In the aftermath of the Leader's attempted takeover, Betty tells Bruce that they are no longer married, since she was declared legally dead and everyone else knows that Bruce had married Caiera. However in the last series, the Hulk family defeat Fin Fang Foom. Afterwards Betty and Bruce resume their relationship until Banner was separated from the Hulk by Dr. Doom.
Red She-Hulk is also present in the "Chaos War" and "Fear Itself" storylines in 2010 and 2011 respectively. She is subsequently a cast member in the ongoing Defenders series (volume 4) that debuted in December 2011 under writer Matt Fraction and came to close in November 2012 with issue #12 being billed as the final issue.
Powers and abilities 
As the Harpy, Betty had superhuman strength, stamina, speed and durability which were enough to fight the Hulk with. She also had big Bird-like wings from her back that she used to fly at high speeds through the air and perform aerial attacks. In addition to that, she also had razor sharp Talons which were so strong that she could use them to cut through and tear apart rock, metal and carry heavy objects, and could project blasts of nuclear energy.
Red She-Hulk 
As the Red She-Hulk, Betty has enormous superhuman strength, stamina, durability, and a healing factor that allows her to easily survive what would normally be fatal injuries to humans, such as stab wounds to the leg and abdomen by Wolverine's claws. Similarly to her ex-husband, Betty's strength level is so vast that it warps the laws of physics even further than standard for other characters in the same fictional continuity, for example allowing her to punch her way through dimensional barriers between different universes. However, she was defeated easily by the original She-Hulk. She shares the Red Hulk's ability to absorb energy, such as the gamma radiation from other Hulks, thereby reverting those beings to human form, and at least temporarily boosting herself. According to Banner, there were plans to remove this ability through the same process that removed the Red Hulk's based on the fact that this ability would eventually kill her. Also like her father, Red She-Hulk has yellow blood, produces yellow energy from her eyes when angry, and can discharge energy by touch. Red She-Hulk can be returned to human form if she is suddenly startled or frightened, though she can revert to her Hulk form at will. As Red She-Hulk, she still maintains control of her humanity, though if extremely angered she can become "pure Hulk", further increasing her strength but losing control of her mind.
Other versions 
"Heroes Reborn" 
In the "Heroes Reborn" Universe created during 1996-1997 storyline by Franklin Richards in the aftermath of the Onslaught crisis, Betty, known as Liz Ross, served as the head of security for Stark International. As a result, she took Iron Man's apparent appointment as Tony Stark's personal bodyguard as a personal insult, and was also present when Bruce Banner was exposed to the gamma radiation that would turn him into the Hulk (The same accident that resulted in Stark donning the Iron Man armor in the first place). Shortly before the heroes returned to their world, it was revealed that Liz was dying of cancer as a result of the gamma exposure, Banner being particularly affected by news of the disease to the extent that he turned back from the Hulk to embrace her as Banner after learning about her condition.
"House of M" 
Ultimate Marvel 
In the Ultimate Marvel Universe, Betty Ross is the daughter of General "Thunderbolt" Ross. She was the college roommate of Janet van Dyne. She earned a degree in communications at Berkeley and dated Bruce Banner until his failed attempts at cracking the super soldier problem turned him into the Hulk.
When the Ultimates were assembled, she became their Director of Communications/Public Relations Officer. After being spurned by Betty, Bruce responded by injecting himself with a version of the Hulk formula that incorporated the recently discovered Captain America's blood, and went on a rampage as the Hulk, during which he killed more than 800 civilians. During his trial, Betty declared her love for Bruce, who was eventually convicted, and sentenced to death, but Bruce escaped the nuclear bomb intended to execute him by turning into the Hulk and escaping. Bruce returned during the Ultimates 2 miniseries after Fury, the President of the United States, Washington D.C. and New York had been captured by the Liberators. Bruce, now exhibiting greater control over his transformations, helped repel the Liberators, and Betty was seen tending to an exhausted Bruce after the battle with the Liberators and Loki in Washington DC.
In the Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk miniseries, Nick Fury sends Wolverine to find and kill the Hulk, but their battle was interrupted by She-Hulk, who is revealed to be Betty, having injected herself with the Hulk serum. Nick Fury reveals that S.H.I.E.L.D. is working to keep her transformations under control, and imprisoned in the Cube.
Collected editions 
|Title||Material collected||Publication date||ISBN|
|Red She-Hulk: End Times||Red She-Hulk #58-62||April 2013||0785165312|
In other media 
- Betty Ross's first TV appearance was in "The Incredible Hulk" portion of the 1966 animated The Marvel Super Heroes voiced by Peg Dixon. In this series, she doesn't know that Bruce Banner and the Hulk are one and the same but she always she shows deep love for Bruce, who deep down feels the same way, and also defends him from her father General Ross' verbal abuse.
- Betty Ross appears in the 1982 The Incredible Hulk animated series voiced by B.J. Ward. In this incarnation, she is a research scientist working alongside Bruce Banner at Gamma Base. Like the 1966 series, Betty (as are most of the series regulars sans Rick Jones) is unaware that Banner transforms into the Hulk.
- Betty Ross appears as a main character in the 1996 The Incredible Hulk animated series voiced by Genie Francis in earlier episodes and by Philece Sampler in later episodes. This show also features her as a scientist like Bruce Banner and that she already knows that he's the Hulk like everyone else and also does her best to try and help Bruce find a cure and be there for him as best she can.
- In the 2003 film Hulk, Betty Ross is played by Jennifer Connelly as an adult and by Rhiannon Leigh Wryn as a child. She is Bruce Banner's girlfriend and scientific colleague.
- Betty Ross appears in the animated direct-to-video films Ultimate Avengers and Ultimate Avengers 2 voiced by Nan McNamara.
- Betty Ross appears in the 2008 film The Incredible Hulk portrayed by Liv Tyler.
- An older version of Betty Ross appears in the animated direct-to-video film Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow voiced by Nicole Oliver.
- Betty Ross appears in the animated direct-to-video film Hulk vs. Thor again voiced by Nicole Oliver. She appears in a dream Bruce Banner has.
Video games 
- Betty Ross appears in the 2003 video game Hulk (which picks up after the film of the same name) voiced by Katie Bennison.
- While Betty Ross isn't seen or heard from in the 2005 video game The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, her name is seen in her father General Ross' file.
- Betty Ross is featured in the video game adaption of The Incredible Hulk voiced by Liv Tyler.
- Betty Ross' Red She-Hulk and Ultimate She-Hulk forms are available as alternate palette swaps for She-Hulk in Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds.
- Red She-Hulk is a playable character in Marvel Super Hero Squad Online voiced by Grey DeLisle.
- Storm, Marc (July 25, 2009). "SDCC 2009: Introducing Red She-Hulk". Marvel.com. Retrieved February 1, 2013.
- Beard, Jim (July 25, 2011). "SDCC 2011: Defenders". Marvel.com. Retrieved February 1, 2013.
- Dietsch, TJ (July 13, 2012). "SDCC 2012: Red She-Hulk". Marvel.com. Retrieved February 1, 2013.
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- The Incredible Hulk vol. 3 #81
- World War Hulk #3
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- Loeb, Jeph. Hulk vol. 2 #15-17 (November 2009-January 2010)
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