- Hail, Hydra! Immortal Hydra! We shall never be destroyed! Cut off one head, two more shall take its place! We serve none but the Master—as the world shall soon serve us! Hail Hydra!
- --The Hydra Oath[src]
Hydra's recorded history is a long, tumultuous, and convoluted one, with the modern construct spanning the decades from World War II up to the present day, and tied directly to surviving fugitive members of governments of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan.
In prehuman time, a cabal of immortal hooded reptoids came to Earth, planning to start a legacy of evil. These evildoers struck an unspecified amount of time later, when they corrupted the Brotherhood of the Spear, a secret society of geniuses active in Asia. The corrupted secret society, identified by its enemy, the Brotherhood of the Shield, as "the Beast", spread out, ingraining itself into all facets of human society - science, magic, politics - like a multi-headed monster, but was believed destroyed around the time of the French Revolution. Although it went by many names - the Cathari sect, the Thule Society - it is under the name of the fearsome Hydra that it is most well-known.
Reformation and Efforts
Reconstituted during World War II, the modern Hydra originally had a State Shinto Imperialist as its Supreme Hydra. Baron Strucker slew and replaced this man, but Captain Savage and the Leatherneck Raiders thwarted Strucker's attempt to gain an A-Bomb. Hydra then clashed with the Invaders. Earlier, Strucker had uncovered Gnobian advanced technology, while he also time-traveled to the future from 1942.
Sometime later a man codenamed Aries organized Strucker, the Fury brothers, and others into a loose partnership known as the Great Wheel of the Zodiac. The tasks he sent this group on led directly to the rivalry between the burgeoning modern organizations of S.H.I.E.L.D., Hydra, and Leviathan.
Soon after the formation of S.H.I.E.L.D., one of its members and a former member of the Great Wheel named Thomas Davidson secretly betrayed the organization to Hydra and became a double agent. Strucker used this connection to make Hydra the secret master of S.H.I.E.L.D. and thus Nick Fury. Hydra used S.H.I.E.L.D. as part of a years-long, slow burning plan to subvert the entire world and bring it under their control.
Shortly upon joining the original Hydra, Von Strucker seized control of the organization from its Japanese founders and slowly steered it towards the goal of conquering Earth. That campaign brought him into conflict with Charles Xavier and the future Magneto among others, and once Hydra became more brazenly public in its operations, eventually led to the creation of the agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D.. S.H.I.E.L.D. was formed by Hydra proxies in the United Nations specifically to gain power and information in ways that Hydra never could from its position then. After the apparent assassination of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s first executive director, Nick Fury was appointed as executive director. This decision, after several Hydra campaigns including the creation of the Overkill Horn (designed to detonate all nuclear explosives worldwide), and the bio-engineered "Death-Spore" Bomb, led directly to von Strucker's first death at the hands of Fury and several deceived Hydra operatives. Following Strucker's death three of Hydra's subsidiaries, Advanced Idea Mechanics, THEM, and the Secret Empire, gained independence.
In the wake of von Strucker's first death, the surviving elements of Hydra broke into factions that each adopted its own reorganized modus operandi. Several of these factions developed "super-agents" that would occasionally break away in turn to become freelance operatives, or, in some rarer cases, superheroes such as the first Spider-Woman. Von Strucker was eventually revived and reunited several of the Hydra factions under his leadership to renew his campaign against S.H.I.E.L.D. and humanity for several more years.
Despite his reorganization of the group, various independent Hydra factions continue to operate around the Marvel Universe, and a Hydra Civil War would later result. While Baron Helmut Zemo had Strucker placed in stasis for his own ends, Gorgon and Strucker's second wife Elisbeth von Strucker mystically created a clone of Strucker who they set up to fail, allowing for a public execution of him, after which - as part of an alliance with the Hand, they utilized an army of brainwashed superheroes and supervillains, including Northstar and Elektra to launch a massive assault on SHIELD. The assault was ultimately repelled and Wolverine would kill Gorgon.
When Edgar Lascombe took over as leader and under his command, Hydra planned an all out attack on the United States by smuggling missiles into New York for use in a planned bio-weapon assault on the Ogallala Aquifer. Lascombe know the reason why Hydra had failed so many times, was the lack of superpowers, so they formed a distraction using clones of the Avengers (Tactical Force instead of Iron Man, Militant as Captain America, Hammer as Thor and Bowman as Hawkeye, who was dead at the time) but were foiled when Spider-Man joined the Avengers' new line-up.
Wheels Within Wheels
In the closing days of the foiled Skrull invasion, Strucker destroyed his undersea base Ichor, which was crawling with Skrull infiltrators. He then changed his plans from subverting the world to conquering it. Fury then found out that Hydra was controlling SHIELD since its foundation. He gathered allies around America to battle the overwhelming threat of Hydra. This included various Caterpillar teams and the Howling Commandos PMC.
This new direction began by stealing technology from secret SHIELD facilities around the US, as well as kidnapping psi-agents from the cryo-storage facility known as "Red Worm". Fury's Secret Warriors attempted to foil Hydra but failed, unprepared for the resurrected Gorgon. Strucker made an alliance with Norman Osborn, hoping for Osborn to kill Fury. However, he proved unsuccessful.
Madame Hydra and Viper negotiated with the Clan Yashida to gain possession of the Box, a mysterious artifact. Leviathan forces assaulted Hydra, kidnapping Viper. Madame Hydra brought them the Box, passing it off to Hydra as a negotiation to rescue their companion. In truth, she had been working for Leviathan the entire time. Using the Heart contained within the Box, Magadan revived countless Leviathan agents from Overwinter cryostatis, including Orion, their leader.
This led to an all-out war between Leviathan and Hydra. A discussion between the groups dissolved merely into fighting. However, Strucker was able to get a mole in the Secret Warriors: Hellfire. An assault on a Hydra base in China by the HC PMC ended disastrously for Fury's side. Fury's Secret Warriors were able to destroy Hydra's main base at Gehenna, with Phobos and Hellfire dying in the process.
Kraken turned on Baron Strucker, taking him captive. After Fury's son died fighting Hydra, Nick surrendered to them. Kraken put him in a room with Strucker. He then revealed his true identity: Jake Fury. The Fury brothers then revealed the truth to Strucker. During the era of the Great Wheel, they had convinced a paranoid Life-Model Decoy of Thomas Davidson to subvert Strucker's organization. Strucker had been working for Fury the whole time. Fury then killed Strucker with a shot to the head.
Hail H.A.M.M.E.R.Avengers, Madame Hydra uses the remains of H.A.M.M.E.R. to reinforce her Hydra.
The "New" Hydra
A "new" Hydra was created by Hydra Queen along Baron Zemo, soldiers who where trapped in Land of Nowhere, soldiers form the "old" Hydra and new members, under the concept that the "old" Hydra failed at their commitment.
Captain America attacked Hydra's base and defeated the Hydra Queen and Codename: Bravo, putting both of them in coma at S.H.I.E.L.D. hospital. Madame Hydra then resume leadership of Hydra once again.
At some point, Baron Zemo regained leadership of Hydra. Under Zemo, Hydra managed another massive infiltration, somehow also managing to infiltrate superhero teams. They also started to recruit new Inhumans after the Terrigen Mist cloud transformed humans with Inhuman ancestors. One of their recruits, a boy called Lucas, possessed a toxin in his blood that could sterilize human beings. Hydra immediately created an antidote and passed it to all it's members, then started systematically pumping Luca's blood to spread it across the world, thus effectively taking over the world within the next generation. Once they had enough blood, Zemo recruited a group of supervillians to release portions of Lucas' blood in various parts of the world in a way that it will hit major population points. But they were opposed by Sam Wilson, the new Captain America after Rogers was depowered, and Rogers' son Nomad. Wilson managed to stop all the villians from releasing the toxin, while both Nomad and Zemo apparently died after the latter set his base to self destruct. In reality, Zemo survived and was secretly placed by S.H.I.E.L.D. in their reality-altering prision known as Pleasant Hill. Madame Hydra was also captured during the ordeal, leaving Hydra without a leader.
Some time later, Wilson helped a hacktivist known as the Whisperer evade S.H.I.E.L.D. custody after leaking several confidential files. The Whisperer repaid Wilson with intel on Hydra, extracted directly from them. In the following six months, Captain America and S.H.I.E.L.D. used the data to cripple the organization and leave it virtually non-existent.
Gorgon, Hydra's remaining figurehead, began a plot to wipe out Earth's superheroes in order to gain the credibility needed to re-unify the remants of Hydra. He was eventually stopped and captured by S.H.I.E.L.D. and a team of heroes. Also, various independent Hydra cells have been shown to remain active despite the organization's lack of central leadership.  They presumably operate independently from one another.
Later, the Red Skull reconstituted a new Hydra from the ground up, attracting various Neo-Nazi, white supremacist and fascist groups to his new cause, to change the world to the Skull's image and operate under the Nazi ideology rather unlike the previous iteration of Hydra. This new Hydra resorted to more direct methods, recruiting extremists, using guerilla tactics and carrying terrorist attacks against civilians in America and Western Europe.
Assets and Offshoots
Throughout its long history Hydra has created several subsidiaries and front companies, a few of which have splintered off into independent organizations that follow their own agendas.
- THEM - THEM was the central committee Baron von Strucker set up to direct operations of two of Hydra's subsidiaries: Advanced Idea Mechanics and the Secret Empire. Perhaps THEM's most notable achievement was reviving the Red Skull from suspended animation.
- Secret Empire - Started by a scientist that felt like an anonymous nobody, the Secret Empire was originally used by Hydra as a means of distraction. During their attempt at conquering the United States it was revealed that their leader, Number One was actually a high ranking member of the US Government.
- Typhon Group - One of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, the Typhon Group is both a well-known provider of vaccines to third world countries and, quietly, the global leader in the creation of chemical weapons.
- Echidna Capital Management - Echidna Capital Management is a venture capital firm committed to funding (and through funding gaining a controlling stake in) businesses on the cutting edge of several key areas such as genetic engineering, new media, nanotechnology, next-generation military systems, and aerospace engineering & manufacturing.
Moments in HYDRA history
- Hydra agents attacked the wedding of Reed Richards and Sue Storm.
- The Fixer working with Hydra to kidnap the amnesiac Namor.
- Clashing with Interpol agents Cassidy and Patrick Lipton.
- Facing Logan with the Parkers.
- Clashing with Mystique.
- A young Remy LeBeau destroying a Hydra ship.
- Silver Fox targeting Logan.
- Hydra administering Project: New Genesis.
- Ivan Trefkov, the murderer of Ernst Sablinova formed an alliance with Hydra at some point.
- Jake Fury became a mole for Hydra, conferring with Strucker at least once.
- Arnim Zola also aided Strucker, meeting with him in Japan.
Weapons: None known.
- No special notes.
- For a time, the legal face of Hydra under Imperial Hydra Arnold Brown was Imperial Industries, Inc.
- Currently, Hydra's corporate faces are The Typhon Group and Echidna Capital Management.
- The agents of the "new" Hydra use both new Hydra suits as well as the classic outfit.
- As pointed out at marvunapp.com the Green Terror (3Xs_Foe)'s men's uniforms resemble Hydra uniforms minus the yellow H (they could be members of the unnamed Hydra in Hydra's origin).
- 223 Hydra (Earth-616) Members
- 535 Appearances of Hydra (Earth-616)
- 131 Media Hydra (Earth-616) was Mentioned in
- 71 Images that include Hydra (Earth-616)
- Team Gallery: Hydra (Earth-616)
Links and References
- ↑ Uncanny X-Men #161
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 Secret Warriors #2
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 Secret Warriors #1
- ↑ Wolverine Vol 3 #29
- ↑ S.H.I.E.L.D. #4
- ↑ Fear Itself: Book of the Skull #1
- ↑ Secret Warriors #25
- ↑ Secret Warriors #26
- ↑ Strange Tales #158
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #523
- ↑ Secret Warriors #4
- ↑ Secret Warriors #3
- ↑ Secret Warriors #7-9
- ↑ Secret Warriors #22
- ↑ Secret Warriors #27
- ↑ Captain America Vol 6 #5
- ↑ Captain America Vol 6 #18
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 All-New Captain America #1
- ↑ All-New Captain America #2
- ↑ All-New Captain America #6
- ↑ Avengers Standoff: Welcome to Pleasant Hill #1
- ↑ All-New Captain America #4
- ↑ Captain America: Sam Wilson #2
- ↑ Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. #5
- ↑ Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. #6
- ↑ Ms. Marvel Vol 4 #1
- ↑ Free Comic Book Day Vol 2015 #Avengers
- ↑ Deadpool Vol 4 #7
- ↑ Avengers Standoff: Assault On Pleasant Hill Omega #1
- ↑ Free Comic Book Day Vol 2016 #Captain America
- ↑ Strange Tales #149
- ↑ All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #5
- ↑ 33.0 33.1 Tales of Suspense #79
- ↑ Tales of Suspense #93-94
- ↑ Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Vol 2 #11
- ↑ Captain America #175
- ↑ Fantastic Four Annual #3
- ↑ X-Men Annual Vol 2 #3
- ↑ Green Terror (3X's foe) - Marvunapp.com