The Wendigo are the result of an ancient curse laid down by the Elder Gods of Canadian folklore that transform any person who eats the flesh of another human being in the Canadian wilderness into a massive, fur-covered humanoid beast with fangs and razor sharp claws. A person can also inherit the curse of the Wendigo if they are bitten by a Wendigo and survive.
The earliest known Wendigo dates back at least a million years ago. Unlike other Wendigo, this one had control over his transformation and could shift between his man and Wendigo forms at will. He did battle with the earliest known Ghost Rider, which ended when he fell into a deep ravine but claimed that he would survive.
In addition to the specific individuals, like Paul Cartier, who had been affected by the Wendigo curse, it was revealed that there are a tribe of Wendigo living in the wild in Canada. One such Wendigo attacked Red Hulk and was killed by him. Red Hulk then dumped his body near the Wendigo tribe where they ended up eating its remains.
A group of these Wendigo later attacked Las Vegas, and were met by the Hulk who was in his Joe Fixit personality. Moon Knight then arrived to assist against the Wendigo, but ended up fighting Joe Fixit instead while the Wendigos rampaged inside of the Stratosphere Hotel & Casino. Ms. Marvel and the Sentry then arrived to apprehend the Hulk, while Moon Knight returned to the Wendigo, realizing that the original few had turned the entire populace of Freemont Street into hundreds of Wendigo. The Hulk, Ms. Marvel, and the Sentry then joined Moon Knight in fighting them, during which the Hulk was turned into a Wendigo himself, the Wendihulk. Eventually Doctor Voodoo arrived and cured them all, ending the threat.
Another Wendigo was later summoned back to Las Vegas by Tyrannus in order to fight the Hulk with the help of Arm'Cheddon, Bi-Beast, Fin Fang Foom, and Umar. Bi-Beast and the Wendigo used the wishing well to grow thirty feet tall. Both of them were defeated by Hulk and Umar imprisoned them and Arm'Cheddon in the Dark Dimension. When Tyrannus and Fin Fang Foom raided the Dark Dimension, Bi-Beast and the Wendigo escaped during the conflict.
During the Chaos War storyline, the Great Beasts manipulated the curse of the Wendigo to transform people who had fallen into the eternal sleep into an army to fight with them. When the Beasts were killed by the Chaos King and the war ended, it is unknown if all those transformed were returned to normal.
An Ur-Wendigo attacked Ella Stirling of Roxxon Corporation during an archaeological expedition; however, she was saved by Weapon H. It turned out that Mr. Banks had Philips eat Wendigo meat at the site of the Avington Party's shelter, which transformed him into an Ur-Wendigo. Using Doctor Strange's Axe of Angarruumus, Weapon H allowed himself to be swallowed by the Ur-Wendigo and killed him from within.
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