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For alternate versions of Samuel Sterns, see Samuel Sterns' Character Hub

"Global power is shifting. You're just a pawn."
―Samuel Sterns[src]

Doctor Samuel Sterns is a cellular biologist and Grayburn College professor who was finding a cure for Bruce Banner. Sterns managed to engineer a temporary antidote for Banner's condition but was also forced to repeat this process with Emil Blonsky, transforming him into Abomination. When he was affected by Banner's blood on his head's open wound, his mind suffered a rapid mutation, greatly increasing his mental abilities. However, Natasha Romanoff arrived and subdued him, handing him into S.H.I.E.L.D.'s custody.


Helping Bruce Banner[]

Computer Discussions[]

"It's time to meet."
"Not safe."
"Living with GAMMA poisoning not safe."
―Samuel Sterns and Bruce Banner[src]

Samuel Sterns worked as a professor at Grayburn College, teaching in the Department of Cellular Biology. When Bruce Banner went on the run from the United States Army, led by General Thaddeus Ross, he managed to establish contact with Sterns and they communicated with each other as Mr. Blue and Mr. Green, respectively, while collaborating to find a cure for Banner's condition.

When Banner was in Brazil, Sterns suggested to search for a Corablanca flower, but when they failed to create a plausible antidote, Sterns asked Banner to send him a sample of his blood so he could engineer an antidote for himself. However, Sterns kept his true intentions secret from Banner: Sterns, in fact, had desired to use the antidote to create cures to various illnesses, motivated by the goal to make humans practically immune to any genetic disease. However, Sterns' plan was flawed, as he had underestimated the blood toxicity of Banner's blood.[3]

Meetup at Grayburn College[]


Sterns is finally introduced to Bruce Banner

"If we overshoot this by even the smallest integer, we're dealing with concentrations with extraordinary levels of toxicity."
―Samuel Sterns to Bruce Banner[src]

Sterns was walking out of a building on the campus of Grayburn College when he was confronted by Professor Betty Ross of Culver University. Sterns recognized her close to instantly, and she began introducing him to Bruce Banner, who revealed himself to be Mr. Green.


Sterns explaining the antidote process

Sterns expressed his excitement to cooperate with Banner and Ross, explaining that he contemplated on if Banner was real and how he could live with Hulk caged inside his body. When Sterns began rambling, Ross and Banner insisted that Sterns stay on task. Sterns explained to Banner that in order for the antidote to work, they need a precise set amount of blood to create the suppressant, or it would not work otherwise.[3]

Engineering an Antidote[]

Samuel Sterns Promotional 2008 TIH

Sterns begins conducting the experiment

"We have the antidote now!"
"They don't want the antidote, they want to make it a weapon! And if we let it go, we will never get it back. You don't know how powerful this thing is."
"I hate the government just as much as anyone, but you're being a little paranoid, don't you think?"
―Samuel Sterns and Bruce Banner[src]

After witnessing Bruce Banner transform into Hulk as a test and successfully reverting him back with their finalized suppressant, it was revealed that he had been experimenting with Banner's blood samples on animal test subjects without his knowledge, and also revealed his wishes to utilize his tests towards further scientific research.


Sterns and Bruce Banner debate his work

Sterns debated with Banner, arguing that their discoveries in regard to the antidote could gain them prestigious awards and attention in the long run, whereas Banner insisted that Sterns did not fully grasp the full extent of the situation. During their bickering, the Strategic Operations Command Center had been listening in to their argument. After a sniper immobilized Banner, Sterns could only watch in horror as Emil Blonsky apprehended Banner into his custody.[3]

Confronted by Emil Blonsky[]


Sterns being threatened by Emil Blonsky

"I don't know what you've got inside you already. The mixture could be... an abomination. I didn't say I was unwilling. I just need informed consent. And you've given it."
―Samuel Sterns and Emil Blonsky[src]

With Banner and Ross were taken into the custody of Thaddeus Ross, only Sterns remained inside the building. Kathleen Sparr interrogated Sterns about his experiments with Banner's blood, but Sterns explained that he couldn't replicate Hulk, even with the mass amount of blood samples he received from Banner. When Sparr began to respond to the revelation that Hulk could not be replicated, Emil Blonsky, who was still inside the building, knocked out Sparr with blunt force.

Emil Blonsky & Samuel Sterns

Sterns is lifted into the air by Emil Blonsky

After the power-hungry Blonsky opened up on his true thoughts on Sparr, he turned a gun on a confused Sterns and threatened him to comply with his demands to inject him with Banner's blood. Sterns opened up on his experiment with Banner, but also noticed that Blonsky had been enhanced already. Blonsky eventually managed to force Sterns to comply by physically threatening him.[3]


Abomination after transforming

Sterns witnesses Emil Blonsky's mutation

"I don't know what you've been ladling into yourself. But clearly, it worked. Let's assume you don't understand a word I'm saying, but if you'll just get back on the table, I can fix this!"
―Samuel Sterns to Emil Blonsky[src]

Sterns began setting up the procedure and strapped Emil Blonsky to the rest. When Sterns injected the power-hungry Blonsky with Bruce Banner's blood and exposed him to Gamma Radiation, it triggered his own transformation. Despite pleading for him to stay on the rest, Blonsky mutated into a hazel, spiky Abomination. As soon as he embraced his newfound powers, Blonsky threw Sterns onto the floor and trashed the laboratory.


Sterns mutating from Bruce Banner's blood

In the confusion, an immobile Sterns was accidentally infected with Banner's blood via an open wound on his forehead. The mutation went wild, as he smiled, his brain began to expand in size[4] while Abomination began a rampage on the streets of Harlem, massacring the NYPD officers and the United States Army soldiers.[3]

Standoff with Black Widow[]

Natasha Sterns

Sterns in captured by Black Widow

"Dr. Samuel Sterns?"
"I think perhaps once I was...but shall now become much more."
Natasha Romanoff and Samuel Sterns[src]

With his brain still expanded due to his infection, Sterns was found by Black Widow, who asked him if he was Samuel Sterns, to which Sterns responded that perhaps he indeed was once but that now he shall become much more. Sterns then identified Black Widow's birthplace from a hint of an accent in her voice. He attempted to bribe her, promising he would help her return to Stalingrad and share his vision with hers, but Black Widow shot him in the leg and subsequently placed him into S.H.I.E.L.D. custody. Sterns was taken afterwards to a secure location to be studied by S.H.I.E.L.D. scientists in a containment tank. The incident relating to Stern's arrest was later referred to as "Project Mr. Blue". Inside the tank his mutation continued to develop, as his skin turned all green and his head grew even more in size.[4]


"Look, I've always been more curious than cautious and that's served me pretty well."
―Samuel Sterns[src]

Samuel Sterns is shown to be an eccentric and ambitious professor, enthusiastic about his work and the opportunities that are presented to him. However, being more curious than cautious, he doesn't often contemplates the negative consequences of his actions, as evidenced in the debate he had with Bruce Banner after revealing the stockpile of synthesized Gamma-irradiated blood samples. In the same dialogue, he revealed his hatred for the government, displaying his anarchistic side. After being mutated however with Banner's blood, Sterns went mad, beginning to mesmerize himself as a higher being. Before being captured by Black Widow, he sought help in carrying out a megalomaniac plan, befitting his past of craving "Olympian" power, only now with apparently malevolent intentions.

Powers and Abilities[]


"Faint traces of your accent suggest that Stalingrad was your birthplace, but I sense that you have not seen a home in many years, my child."
―Samuel Sterns to Black Widow[src]
  • Artificially Enhanced Physiology: Sterns was infected with Hulk's blood via an open wound on his forehead. The gamma radiation mutation in his brain gave him superhuman intelligence, although his skin turned all green and his head expand the size as side effect.
    • Superhuman Intelligence: The exposition to Hulk's blood drastically increased Sterns' brainpower to the point where he could identify Black Widow's birthplace of Stalingrad by a slight hint in her accent.[4]


"When I read what he had been doing... I mean, I didn't think it was possible to synthesize inhibitors that are that complex, but he's doing it by the bucketload."
"His work is unbelievably brilliant."
Bruce Banner and Betty Ross[src]
  • Master Scientist: Samuel Sterns helped Bruce Banner when he sought a cure for his transformation into Hulk. He was able to develop a method that could potentially reverse the transformation, by duplicating and testing the limited blood samples that Banner sent him. He was also able to duplicate the transformation process with Emil Blonsky, transforming him into Abomination when Banner's blood was mixed with the Super Soldier Serum that Blonsky already had, a situation that Sterns had already anticipated.


  • Grayburn College: Sterns used to work in Grayburn College as a professor in the Department of Cellular Biology.





In chronological order:


  • In the comics, Samuel Sterns was a menial laborer with only average intelligence. After being exposed to Gamma Radiation while he was transporting hazardous materials, he became the superpowered criminal Leader before Banner became Hulk. Sterns is also one of the leaders of Intelligencia, a group comprised of the smartest villains in the Marvel universe.
  • The Marvel Cinematic Universe version of Samuel Sterns bears some resemblance to his brother Philip Sterns, a scientist who studied gamma radiation and romanticized the concept of Hulk, eventually receiving gamma-based powers.
  • Sterns uses the online name "Mr. Blue" to communicate with Banner. In the comics, Mr. Blue was an alias used by Betty Ross to keep in contact with a fugitive Banner.

Behind the Scenes[]


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