Hero Overview

It's clobberin' time!
~ The Thing's most famous quote.
My point, an' I got one, is this: Safety ain't all it's cracked up t' be. Not if ya live a life worth th' risks. Sure, I coulda wallowed over one lousy break instead o' facin' th' world. An' some days, I still do. I backslide. And yer gonna do that, too. It's hard not ta. Yer gonna get lost in th' bad. But so long as ya got folks around who love ya, ya gotta remember tomorrow c'n always be better.
~ The Thing.

The Thing, real name, Benjamin Jacob "Ben" Grimm, was a friend of Reed Richards who was caught in the accident that created the Fantastic Four - while the others remained relatively human he was mutated into a rock-like monster and he is very sensitive about that fact - Reed has promised to find a cure for Ben but so far has been unsuccessful.

Despite the tragedy behind the Thing the man remains a hero - famous for his battle-cry of "It's Clobberin' Time!" and being the resident strongman of the team he is the one most likely tearing apart a Doom-Bot or holding up a bus to save some innocents, of course he has a softer side too, despite his appearance.

He was created by the late Stan Lee and the late Jack Kirby, and first appeared in Fantastic Four #1 in 1961.

In the unreleased 1994 Fantastic Four film, he was portrayed by Michael Bailey Smith and Carl Ciarfalio in his Thing form. In the 2005 film and its sequel, Rise of the Silver Surfer, he was portrayed by Michael Chiklis, as Jamie Bell played the character in the 2015 reboot.


Early life

Benjamin Jacob Grimm was born on Yancy Street, Manhattan to Daniel and Elise Grimm, and younger brother to Daniel Jr., and lived on the Lower East Side. Grimm's family grew up in poverty, with his father being an alcoholic who was unable to keep a job, forcing his brother to gain money as the leader of the Yancy Street Gang.

Ben idolized his brother, and became embittered when he was killed by a rival gang, with the former becoming a member of the gang years later. After his parents' death, Ben was taken in by his Uncle Jake, a successful physician. Ben grew to care for his family, and left the gang to become a football player at school, and was offered a scholarship to State University.

Ben was the roommate of Reed Richards, who would become his best friend during their years together. Reed told Ben that he wanted to build a starship someday, and the latter jokingly agreed to fly the starship when he built it. Ben would graduate from State, and join the United States Air Force, becoming a fighter pilot. When he left the military, Reed reminded him of his promise to fly the starship.

Becoming the Thing

Ben agreed to fly the starship, but warned Reed of not doing the test flight because of the shielding might prove inadequate from radiation storms. Ben was persuaded to fly despite the risks, and was joined by Susan Storm, her brother Johnny, and Reed himself. Ben's warnings were true, as the shield didn't protect the group from cosmic rays, and Ben was force to abort from space back to Earth.

While crashing back on Earth, Ben transformed into an orange-like thing, who was super strong, and durable. Reed convinced the three to use their powers for good, and the Fantastic Four was founded. Ben would found himself depress and unwanted due to his monster look, but found himself become a surrogate family member to the others.

Despite this, Ben (at first) became angered at his new appearance, and wanted to return back to human self. Reed promised Ben that he would find a cure, but to no avail, and accepted his fate. Ben would meet Alicia Masters by helping her defeat her step-father, the Puppet Master, and became her boyfriend. He would, however, return back to his human form when exposed to Hulk's gamma radiation after a fight. Luke Cage replaced him as a member of the team, and Ben was given an exoskeleton to continue to aid the heroes. Despite this, Ben was returned back to his rock form, as punishment from Galactus.

Reed eventually discovered that Ben could reach a state in which he could transform from his rock appearance to his normal state at will. However, Ben feared that Alicia would only love him as the Thing, as she didn't know before his transformation. As a result of this, Ben suffered from a subconscious mental block that prevented him from returning to his human form.

Powers and Abilities

The Thing is super human strong and virtually immune to damage - able to fight against the Hulk for a while, he also tires slowly and can leap pretty far and high - probably due to his sheer size and strength. Also despite his rocky appearance the Thing retains the same agility and reflexes he had as an ordinary human and can catch unwary opponents off-guard, the Thing is also a highly trained pilot as he was a former test pilot in the United States Air Force and is equally well-trained in hand-to-hand combat with knowledge of boxing, wrestling, judo, jujutsu and street fighting techniques.


  • Alicia Masters
  • Sharon Ventura
  • Kathleen O'Meara


  • Ranked 23rd on "The Top 50 Avengers" by IGN in 2012.
  • Ranked 18th in the "Top 100 Comic Book Heroes" by IGN in 2011.
  • Ranked #2 on a listing of Marvel Comics' monster characters in 2015.
  • Named by Empire Magazine as the tenth of "The 50 Greatest Comic Book Characters" in 2008.
  • The powers of the Fantastic Four are based on the four elements, with The Thing's being earth.


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