|General John Ryker|
|First appearance||The Incredible Hulk Vol. 3 #12 (March 2000)|
|Created by||Paul Jenkins|
|Full name||General John Ryker|
|Team affiliations||Gamma Corps|
General John Ryker is a fictional comic book antagonist who appears in books published by Marvel Comics, usually as an enemy of the Hulk. He is a corrupt Army General depicted as being obsessed with the Hulk, and makes numerous attempts to capture the creature.
Fictional character biography
John Ryker joined the military at a young age and wanted to help determine future history from the shadows. One of his most prominent actions was manipulating the creation of the conspiracy around the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Apparently Kennedy was really killed by two Corsican mercenaries, but at the time it was deemed too expensive to wage World War Three so the idea of a conspiracy was created. When his wife Lucy Riker developed cancer, Ryker used the military to hunt down Bruce Banner who turned into the Hulk after exposure from gamma radiation during a nuclear test that Ryker supervised. Initially, Ryker irradiated various subjects to try and duplicate the same accident behind the Hulk, with the goal of allowing him to isolate the Hulk's ability to cope with the radiation and use it to heal his wife. His closest success was Private Benjamin Tibbits who mutated into Flux, but this transformation was imperfect, leading to Ryker simply breaking Flux to use as a near-mindless soldier against the Hulk.
However, his brutal treatment of the Hulk not only broke down the mental barriers keeping the Hulk's other personalities from taking control, including the Devil Hulk, but also convinced General Thunderbolt Ross to turn against Ryker and free their long-time enemy. Taking Lucy hostage, Ross told Lucy the truth, prompting Ryker to depart as Lucy coldly told him that Lucy didn't ask to be healed at the cost of innocent people.
He is responsible for the creation of the Gamma Corps, a special military unit that dealt with the Hulk. He was spurred into action after his wife (who seemed to have been cured by a transfusion of the Hulk's blood) died from a sudden revival of cancer. His unit were unable to stop the Hulk (who went after Ryker) and caused Gamma Corps member Grey (who had the Hulk's DNA within) to lose temper, resulting in a Hulk-like rage that tore down Ryker's base, with the General still inside.
However, Ryker later reappears as the CEO of Origins Corporation, a company specializing in giving average people superpowers through gene therapy and sending his new "Gamma Corps: Black" to harvest the DNA from the new She-Hulk.
Powers and abilities
General Ryker has no superpowers but he's a genius strategist, an adept deceiver and a master manipulator.
In other media
- John Ryker is alluded in Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes. In the episode "Hard Knocks", he is the leader of the group of soldiers hunting the Hulk under the orders of Agent Pratt.
- General Ryker appears in the Hulk video game, voiced by Jano Frandsen. This version is very similar to his comic counterpart. He sends out the military to capture the Hulk so that he might be able to study the Hulk. Also, he only appears in the cutscenes of the game. When discovering the Gamma Orb, Ryker plans to get it for his own purposes, but Ravage gets the orb. Ryker decided to kill both the Hulk and Ravage. He also had the Hulkbusters and Private Benjamin "Benny" Tibbetts to fight the Hulk. At the end of game, he is seen in base where Flux went to recover and he, presumably, began experimenting on his henchman.
- Incredible Hulk Vol. 3 #12
- Incredible Hulk Vol. 3 #17-19
- Incredible Hulk vol. 3 #20
- World War Hulk: Gamma Corps #4
- The Incredible Hulk #601
- Ultimate Origins #2