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Hela possesses the conventional attributes of an Asgardian woman (“goddess”) as well as certain special abilities that pertain to her role as a local death goddess. Like all Asgardians, she is extremely long-lived, super-strong, immune to all diseases, and resistant to conventional injury. Her Asgardian metabolism gives her far greater than human endurance at all physical activities tough Hela rarely feels obliged to perform undue exercise.
As a goddess of death, Hela holds her power of life and death over her kinsmen, the gods of Asgard. Death for an Asgardian is somewhat different than death for a mortal. In both cases, the corporeal body ceases all functions and activities, but whereas mortal spirit flee the physical form at the moment of death, the spirits of gods remain in their bodies until the death-goddess draws it out and dispatches it to its final resting place. Those spirits (or astral-selves) remain integral for eternity and reside in certain twilight realms in the dimension of Asgard like Hel and Niffleheim, where they take on a quasi-physical tangible existence. Although Hela is usually content to wait until an Asgardian is on the verge of succumbing to wounds before she touches him or her and draws the spirit from the body, she can also touch perfectly healthy Asgardians and kill them with the touch if she so chooses. She also has the power to restore life to recently diseased gods as long as their spirits have not left the sheaths of their bodies. She does not exercise this power often.
While Hela’s touch is also fatal to mortals, she does not generally leave the dimension of Asgard or have much traffic with human lives. The souls of immortals are her province, nor those of mortals.
Hela is able to travel about in her astral form, possessing the same powers of death as her physical form has. Because of her Asgardian metabolism, she does not have any limitation on the amount of time she can spend out of her physical form, unlike mortal astral projectionists.
Hela was born ages ago to the being who would one day be called Odin and a goddess whose name and image have been lost in antiquity. On the day of her maturity, Odin appointed her goddess and ruler of the northernmost realms of the dead. Her special dominion was over the souls of all who did not die in battle, while Odin himself built the palace Valhalla to house the souls of all of those who died as heroes. In recent years, when Odin’s attention had strayed from the maintenance of Valhalla, Hela tried to annex that realm to her own, hoping to consolidate her power over all Asgard’s dead. Eventually Odin grew aware of her ambitions and opposed them. In the course of battle, Odin’s band of Valkyries, the custodians of Valhalla, lost their physical forms, no longer able to travel from Valhalla except in their wraith-like astral forms. Hela gave up her contest for Valhalla when Odin vowed to keep better watch over it in future, and she returned to her realms.
First Appearance: Journey Into Mystery (1952) #102
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
100% Marvel (2003)
#66 All-New Invaders (2014)
- 'Thor - Die Verbannung'
#1 All-New Marvel Now! Point One (2014)
- 'Gods and Soldiers'#2
- 'Gods and Soldiers Part Two'
Angela: Asgard's Assassin (2014)
Angela: Queen of Hel (2015)
Avengers Origins: Thor (2012)
Avengers Prime (2010)
Avengers Unconquered (2009)
#39 Captain Britain and MI13 (2008)
- 'The Hordes of Hela!'
Chaos War (2010)
#2 Chaos War: Ares (2011)
- 'Return of the God Squad'
Chaos War: Chaos King (2011)
Dark Avengers (2009)
#8 Dark Reign Files (2009)
- 'Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia, Part 5'
Deadpool's Art of War (2014)
Doctor Strange: Sorcerer Supreme (1988)
Domination Factor: Avengers (1999)
Fantastic Four (1998)
Fearless Defenders (2013)
Ghost Rider Finale (2007)
#2 Heroic Age: Prince of Power (2010)
- 'The Bold and the Beautiful!'#3
Heroic Age: Villains (2011)
#1 Iron Man/Thor (2011)
- 'Heroic Age Villains'
#4 Journey Into Mystery (1952)
- 'God Complex Chapter Four'
#1 Loki (2010)
- 'Loki part one'#4
- 'Loki part four'
#3 Loki: Agent of Asgard (2014)
- 'Part Three: Funeral for a God'
#14 Marvel Age (1983)
- 'Born One Morning and the Sun Didn't Shine'#15
- 'The Old Army Game'#16
- 'Would You Know More?'
Marvel Fanfare (1982)
Marvel Graphic Novel (1982)
Marvel Tales (1964)
Mephisto Vs. ... (1987)
Mythen und Sagen (1992)
New Mutants (2009)
#11 New Mutants Forever (2010)
- 'Hel's Valkyrie'#29#30#31
- 'The Corpse Shore'#32
- 'The Halls of Hel'#42
- 'Exiled Part 3: Cannibal Time Bomb'#43
- 'Exiled Part 5: Unhappily Ever After'
#1 New Mutants Special Edition (1985)
- 'Shadows in the Night'
#1 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
- 'Home Is Where The Heart Is'
Origins of Siege (2010)
Secret Warriors (2009)
Siege Prologue (2009)
Siege: Loki (2010)
The Defenders (1972)
#66 The Enchantress: Illustrative Art of Dan Brereton (2014)
- 'War of the Dead!'#68
- 'Valhalla Can Wait!'
HC The Incredible Hulk (1968)
- 'The Enchantress: Illustrative Art of Dan Brereton'
The Mighty Thor (2011)
#16#19 The New Mutants (1983)
- 'Everything Burns: Part the Second: The Kindling'
#37 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (1983)
- 'If I Should Die'#77
- 'Let's Make a Deal!'#79
- 'Curse of the Valkyries'#82
- 'The Road to Hel...'#83
- 'The Quick and the Dead'#84
- 'The Sword's Edge'#85
- 'The Killing Stroke'
#1 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition (1985)
- 'A: From Abomination to Avengers Quinjet'#5
- 'H-J: From Hangman to Juggernaut'
#5 The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Master Edition (1990)
- 'Gardener to the Hulk'
Annual 05 Thor (1998)
- 'The War of the Gods!'Annual 10
- 'A Time To Die!'Annual 11
- 'The Saga of Thor'Annual 17
- 'Citizen Kang, Part 2'#133
- 'Behold... the Living Planet!'#150
- 'Even in Death...'#154
- '... To Wake the Mangog!'#186
- 'Worlds at War!'#187
- 'The World is Lost!'#188
- 'The End of Infinity!'#189
- 'The Icy Touch of Death!'#190
- '-- And So, To Die!'#196
- 'Within the Realm of Kartag!'#199
- 'If This Be Death..!'#201
- 'To Hela and Back'#274
- 'The Eye -- and the Arrow!'#277
- 'Time of the Trolls!'#278
- 'At Long Last -- Ragnarok?!'#303
- 'The Miracle of Storms'#312
- 'The Judgment of Tyr'#313
- 'Serpent From the Heavens'#314#324
- 'Pickin' Up the Pieces'#360
- 'Into the Valley of Death!'#361
- 'The Quick and the Dead!'#362
- 'Like a Bat Out of Hel!'#366
- 'The Harvest of the Seasons'#371
- 'Peace On Earth...'#372
- 'Without Justice, There Is No Peace!'#373
- 'The Gift of Death'#374
- 'Fires of the Night!'#375
- 'Shadows of the Past'#382
- 'Journey Into Mystery'#400
- 'Lest The Heavens Perish!'#402
- 'Even an Asgardian Can Die!!'#438#439#441
- 'My Brother's Burden!'#476
- 'Whom the Destroyer Would Destroy...'#477
- 'Three Who Ride the Thunder!'#488
- 'To Hela and Back!'#489
- 'Hel and High Water'#502
- 'Putting on the Bear Shirt'#611
- 'The Fine Print, Part 1'#612
- 'The Fine Print, Part 2'#613
- 'The Fine Print, Part 3'#614
- 'The Fine Print, Part 4'#620.1
#1 Thor (2000)
- 'In Search of the Gods'#2
- 'Deal with the Devil!'#13
- 'The Work of Odin'#29
- 'Whence Comes Death'#30
- 'Winter's Edge'#32
- 'Forever Kursed'#35
- 'Across All Worlds'#41
- 'Taking Charge, Part 1 of 3'#43
- 'Taking Charge, Part 3 of 3'#84
- 'Ragnarok, Part the Fifth'#85
- 'Ragnarok, Part the Last'
HC vol. 02 Thor & Hercules: Encyclopaedia Mythologica (2009)
- 'By J. Michael Straczynski Vol. 2'TPB vol. 02
- 'By J. Michael Straczynski Vol. 2'#5
- 'Special Delivery'#12
- 'Diversions & Misdirections'
Thor God-Size Special (2009)
#1 Thor: For Asgard (2010)
- 'The Death and Life of Skurge the Executioner'
#4#5 Thor: God of Thunder (2012)
- 'Asgard, Part Five'
Thor: Son of Asgard (2004)
#11 Thor: Tales of Asgard by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby (2009)
- 'Worthy: Part 2'#12
- 'Worthy: Part 3'
Thor: The Legend (1996)
Thor: Wolves of the North (2011)
#15 Uncanny X-Men (1963)
- 'The Old Bait And Switch!'
What If? (1977)
Women of Marvel: Celebrating Seven Decades Handbook (2010)
#207 X-Force (1991)
- 'Lost Souls'#208#211
- 'Staying in Vegas'#212#224#250
- 'Hell On Earth War Part One'#251
- 'Hell On Earth War Part Two'#252
- 'Hell On Earth War Part Three'#254
- 'Hell On Earth War Part Five'#256
- 'Hell On Earth War Finale'#261
- 'The End of X-Factor Part 5'
#22#23 X-Force/Cable '97 (1997)
- 'Necrosha: Chapter Four'
#1 X-Men: Divided We Stand (2008)
- 'X-Infernus, Chapter One: Soul Survivors'
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