Hela is the Norse Goddess of Death and ruler of Hel and Niffleheim.
First appearance Journey into Mystery #102
Adapted from Norse Myths by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.
Hela is a supervillainess, she is the Asgardian goddess of death and is based on the Norse goddess, Hel.
Hela was allegedly daughter of the Asgardian god of mischief, Loki.
The ruler of Hel and Niflheim, the character has been a frequent foe of Thor.
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.
For ages, Hela sought to bring more Asgardian souls under her control, and especially the souls of Odin and his son, Thor; however, during their first meeting, when Thor offered his own life in exchange for that of Lady Sif, who was a prisoner of Hela, the goddess was impressed by the young thunder god’s nobility and let both of them go.
Hela once cast a curse on Thor which prevented him from healing any wounds and also prevented his death. After many battles and untold amounts of pain, Thor, reduced to pulp by a battle with the Midgard Serpent, entered Hela’s realm within the armor of the Destroyer. The Destroyer’s power proved too much for Hela, and she restored Thor’s health and removed her curse. The Destroyer remained in Hela’s realm to remind her of her defeat.
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. Hela gave up her contest for Valhalla when Odin vowed to keep better watch over it in future, and she returned to her realms.
Hela possesses the conventional superhuman abilities of an Asgardian woman, although in fact her parents may have been members of the race of giants of Jotunheim, as well as certain special abilities that pertain to her role as a goddess of death.
Hela is often armed with her “Nightsword,” and is a proficient swordswoman. She battled Pluto proficiently with the Nightsword pitted against his enchanted Midnight Axe until Pluto brought demons in to attack Hela in the course of their duel.
TV and Film Hela has appeared in include:
The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes episodes “The Fall of Asgard” and “A Day Unlike Any Other”, voiced by Nika Futterman.
Avengers Assemble episode “Valhalla Can Wait”, voiced by Vanessa Marshall. In this version of the character, Hela is made the ruler over Valhalla instead of Hel and Niffleheim.
Animated direct-to-video film Hulk vs. Thor voiced by Janyse Jaud. In the film, Thor takes Loki to Hel to bargain with Hela for the soul of Bruce Banner after Loki separated Banner from the Hulk.
Hela will make her Marvel Cinematic Universe debut in Thor: Ragnarok, played by Cate Blanchett.