Hugo Weaving as the Red Skull in Captain America: The First Avenger

Who he is: Red Skull, a.k.a. Johann Schmidt

His power: He went through an early prototype of the Super-Soldier Serum used to create Captain America, meaning he has similarly enhanced strength, speed, stamina, and near-invulnerability. However, the process also left him horribly disfigured; hence, the Blue Man Group-meets-Voldemort look you see above.


His story: Johann Schmidt was a German physicist who joined Hydra, believing that magic could be more than just myth. After being recruited by the SS, he eventually rose to the position of lieutenant colonel (ObergruppenfĂĽhrer), where he commanded his own branch. Soon, along with Arnim Zola, Schmidt wanted to test a new Super-Soldier Serum, but its developer, Abraham Erskine, refused to hand it over. Schmidt stole it and tested it on himself, gaining enormous strength but becoming disfigured by the formula. He became intent on acquiring ultimate power, which he finally found in the form of the Tesseract, a powerful cube hidden for centuries. He used it to develop weapons and energy sources, betraying the Nazis and planning to take over the world, but was ultimately defeated by Captain America. When Schmidt tried to grab the Tesseract after Steve Rogers broke the machine it powered, the cube consumed him, while launching him through a portal into space.

Played by: Hugo Weaving

Currently, Red Skull is: Somewhere far away, in another part of the universe, probably burned to a crisp from grasping the Tesseract.


Where will we see him next? Possibly never. It’s not even clear he survived—though, this being Marvel, death is almost never 100 percent confirmed.