Elizabeth Ross is the daughter of Thaddeus Ross, a lieutenant general in the United States Army. Her mother died of unrevealed causes. Later, Ross met Bruce Banner in college, where they fell in love. At Harvard University, both participated in a experiment involving hallucinogenic drugs.
Ross was assisting Bruce Banner with the Gamma Pulse experiment in the Bio-Tech Force Enhancement Project that resulted in the unintentional creation of Hulk: a large, strong, green being that Banner would become when his heartbeat got too fast or when he became very angry. The resulting accident in the lab caused Ross to be injured and taken to the hospital. When she awoke, she found that Banner had already left. Banner later quit his job and left in search of a cure to his unwilling transformations.
When Betty returned to work, her father, General Thaddeus Ross, had all of her work and data on the Gamma Pulse experiment taken away, but she had already made a back-up version in case Banner would ever return.
Bruce Banner eventually returned to Culver University, but not with the intention to meet her. She however accidentally saw him at a pizzeria owned by Stanley Lieber during a dinner date with Leonard Samson and forced him to stay the night, giving him a copy of the gamma experiment data that he required.
The next day before Banner left, Samson informed General Thaddeus Ross. A battle ensued on the campus of Culver University which lead to Banner transforming into Hulk. During the battle, Hulk connected with Betty on multiple levels, as he realized that she was the only one without the intention to hurt him. This resulted in his anger increasing when he saw Betty being hassled by the Strategic Operations Command Center.
With the fight over, Betty approached him, being the only one who was not hurt in his presence. Hulk ensured her safety when a helicopter crashed upon them, and took her to the Smoky Mountain National Forest after she passed out.
Upon gaining conscience, she connected with Hulk, with Hulk demonstrating the intent to protect her in the face of the thunder and lightning of a nearby storm. Betty calmed him, sitting beside him and holding his hand. Due to his calmed condition, Hulk changed back to Banner overnight.
Later, the pair stayed at a motel for some time, where Betty apparently wanted to have sex with Banner, but he refused, as it excited him to the level which might change him into Hulk.
Leaving every traceable possession behind, Betty sold her mother’s last remembrance, a necklace, to help the pair to travel to Grayburn College in New York City, and meet Doctor Samuel Sterns, a close ally of Banner under the moniker Mister Blue. Banner underestimated the track on him, and his email to Mister Blue was easily traced by S.H.I.E.L.D., who then responded to the United States Army and General Ross.
Helping Bruce Find an Antidote
- "I don't know. In the cave, I really felt like it knew me. Maybe your mind is in there, it's just overcharged and can't process what's happening."
"I don't want to control it. I want to get rid of it."
- ―Betty Ross and Bruce Banner
Upon arriving in New York City, Betty and Bruce Banner met with Doctor Samuel Sterns, who tested his experimental antidote on him During his transformed state, Hulk was at the verge of losing control and destroying the laboratory, only to be calmed by Betty, whose interaction and soothing words made him control his anger and change back to Banner, allowing the antidote to work.
However, soon after, the Strategic Operations Command Center intervened, arresting Banner and taking the pair back into custody. On their way back to base, the soldiers reported that Hulk had been spotted in the streets. General Thaddeus Ross, Banner, and Betty realized that it was a transformed Emil Blonsky. Banner requested that Ross let him attempt to stop him, to which the general grudgingly complied. A battle followed in which Hulk fell weak in front of the now improved Blonsky; only to beat him when Blonsky’s actions endangered Betty’s life. After beating Blonsky, Hulk and Betty shared a peaceful moment together, in which he spoke her name, and then fled as more authorities arrived.
- Thaddeus Ross - Father
- Mother †
- Bruce Banner/Hulk - Former Lover, Former Colleague
- Leonard Samson - Former Lover
- Stanley Lieber - Friend
Video Game Only
- In the comics, Betty Ross married Glenn Talbot and Bruce Banner, and eventually became Red She-Hulk.
- Betty Ross is the only one of the Pre-Avengers love interests not to be featured or mentioned in The Avengers. Pepper Potts is featured, Peggy Carter is featured in flashbacks, and Jane Foster's photo is shown on a S.H.I.E.L.D. screen to Thor by Agent Phil Coulson.
- During a press conference in support of Avengers: Age of Ultron, Joss Whedon has said that the reason why the Hulkbuster is named Veronica is a reference to Archie Comics character Veronica, who is a rival to Archie Comics character Betty, and because Banner used to be in love with a girl named Betty.
Behind the Scenes
- Betty Ross in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the second live-action incarnation of the character, following an incarnation portrayed by Jennifer Connelly.
- Brittney Banks was a stunt double for Liv Tyler in the role of Betty Ross.