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ERSKINE! You and your accursed experiment shall both die in this room! Down with democracy! Down with freedom! The Third Reich shall live forever! HEIL HITLER!
~ Heinz Kruger in the comics.
Steve: "Who the hell are you!?"
Heinz: "The first of many! Cut off one head... [bites on capsule] Two more shall take its place.
Hail HYDRA!"
~ Steve and Heinz as the latter dies in Captain America: The First Avenger.

Heinz Kruger is a minor, yet pivotal antagonist in Marvel's Captain America comics. He also appeared in Captain America: The First Avenger. He is a Nazi assassin, spy, and member of HYDRA in the employ of Johann Schmidt (better known as the "Red Skull").

In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he is portrayed by Richard Armitage, who also played Francis Dolarhyde in Hannibal, Guy of Gisborne in Robin Hood and James Sulivan in Space Sweapers.

Personality

Kruger was an extremely cunning, ruthless and intelligent individual, being knowledgeable to deal with situations of danger or combat easily. He was ruthless enough to hold a child hostage and then kill him once he was no longer useful. In addition to his intelligence and ruthlessness, Kruger was also an extremely loyal individual to HYDRA Organization, being obsessed with only one goal; to steal a sample of the Super Soldier serum so that HYDRA can create its own army of Super Soldiers and kill Erskine so that none of HYDRA's enemies could do the same. He also knew when to "retire" by killing himself with a cyanide pill hidden in his mouth to avoid interrogation and capture.

Biography

Marvel Comics

When Steve Rogers is first given the Super-Soldier formula, Kruger managed to infiltrate the lab as a government official named "Fred Clemson". However, he revealed his true allegiance when his bullet cut down Dr. Abraham Erskine, the creator of the formula. As Kruger attempted to escape, he turned on Erskine's electric Omniverter and was killed via electrocution.

Because of his interference, Erskine was dead and the knowledge of the Super Soldier Serum was lost, leaving Steven Rogers as the only Super Soldier.

Marvel Cinematic Universe

Kruger appears as a minor, yet pivotal antagonist in the 2011 MCU film Captain America: The First Avenger, where he was portrayed by Richard Armitage. Like his comic book counterpart, Kruger is disguised as a government official named Fred Clemson and witnesses Steve Rogers' transformation into Captain America. Once the process is complete, Kruger detonates a bomb, and in the chaos, kills Abraham Erskine. However, unlike his comic book counterpart, Kruger is not killed in the lab, but manages to escape along with a sample of the doctor's serum so that HYDRA can create an army of super soldiers instead of America.

Despite Agent Peggy Carter managing to kill Kruger's getaway driver, he steals a taxi to continue his escape, but Rogers, with his newfound abilities, pursues Kruger's car through the streets of Brooklyn, eventually latching onto the car's roof. Failing to shake Rogers off, Kruger escapes from the car and takes a nearby child hostage, threatening to kill him if Rogers doesn't back off. When Rogers continues his pursuit, Kruger attempts to kill him, but his gun is out of bullets, so he instead throws the boy into the harbor as a distraction. The boy is, fortunately, unharmed and able to swim, and urges Rogers to "go get him." Kruger then boards an advanced HYDRA submarine and prepares to return to Germany with the serum, but before he can, Rogers dives into the water and catches up with him. Shattering the sub's cockpit, he grabs Kruger, pulls him onto the dock and subdues him, causing the serum to be dropped and destroyed.

However, as Rogers prepares to interrogate him, he bites down on a concealed cyanide pill. In his dying breaths, Kruger proclaims that he is "the first of many" and that if he were to "cut off one head, two more would take its place." He then declares, "Hail HYDRA!" before finally dying.

What If...?

Heinz Kruger appears in the first episode of Marvel's What If...? animated series, titled What If… Captain Carter Were the First Avenger?.

In this version, Heinz Kruger detonates the bomb before Steve Rogers is subjected to the program. As Steve attempts to stop him, Heinz shoots him and attempts to steal the serum for HYDRA, but is then shot dead by Peggy Carter. Because of his actions, the program was nearly lost, but Peggy subjects herself to it and becomes Captain Carter.

Trivia

  • The film The First Avenger came out in July 22, 2011, a year before The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, in which Armitage portrayed Thorin Oakenshield.
  • Heinz Kruger has the same role as Joe Chill from the Batman comics and The Burglar from Spiderman comics, although regardless if he had came and killed Erskine, Rogers would have already completed his transformation into Captain America, whereas Spider-Man and Batman had to have these tragedies befall them in order for them to turn over to crime fighting.

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           Marvel Cinematic Universe Logo.png Villains

Ten Rings
Mandarin | Raza Hamidmi Al-Wazar | Abu Bakaar | Ahmed | Omar | Ten Rings Agent | Jackson Norriss | HYDRA Buyer | Death Dealer | Razor Fist | Gao Lei

Strategic Operations Command Center
Abomination | Thunderbolt Ross

Hammer Industries
Justin Hammer | Jack | Hammer Drones

Frost Giants
Loki Laufeyson | Laufey | Grundroth | Hailstrum | Raze | Jotunheim Beast

HYDRA
Leaders
Hive | Red Skull | Arnim Zola | Daniel Whitehall | Wolfgang von Strucker | Grant Ward | Gideon Malick

Centipede Group
John Garrett | Ian Quinn | Raina | Edison Po | Deathlok | Debbie | Vanchat | Scorch | Kaminsky

STRIKE
Alexander Pierce | Crossbones | Jack Rollins

Winter Soldiers
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Others
Aida | General Hale | Wilfred Malick | Heinz Kruger | HYDRA Lieutenant | Velt | Jasper Sitwell | Russo | Senator Stern | List | Scarlet Witch | Quicksilver | Mitchell Carson | HYDRA Buyer | Sunil Bakshi | Absorbing Man | Agent 33 | Blizzard | Kebo | Werner von Strucker | Giyera | Lucio | Alisha Whitley | Primitives | Hero Mercs | Dr. Leopold Fitz | Alistair Fitz | Ruby Hale | Qovas | Senator Atwood | HYDRA's Champion

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Red Room
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Zealots
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Sovereign
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Celestials
Arishem the Judge | Eson the Searcher | Ego the Living Planet | Tiamut the Communicator

Bestman Salvage
Vulture | Tinkerer | Shocker #1 | Shocker #2 | Randy Vale

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Hela Odinsdottir | Skurge | Fenris Wolf

Sakaaran Guards
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Fire Demons
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Leader
Mysterio

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Eternals
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Raimiverse
Green Goblin (Earth-TRN925) | Sandman (Earth-TRN927) | Doctor Octopus (Earth-TRN926)

Webbverse
Electro (Earth-TRN929) | Lizard (Earth-TRN928)

Inhuman Afterlife
Jiaying | Gordon | Calvin L. Johnson | Raina | Alisha Whitley

Kingpin's Criminal Empire
Leaders
Kingpin

Tracksuit Mafia
Echo | William Lopez | Clown | Ivan Banionis | Tomas | Enrique | Dmitri

Others
James Wesley | Leland Owlsley | Christian Blake | Carl Hoffman | John Healy | Bullseye | Vanessa Marianna | Tammy Hattley | Felix Manning | Eleanor Bishop

The Hand
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Watchdogs
Felix Blake | Holden Radcliffe | Anton Ivanov | Tucker Shockley | Ellen Nadeer | Victor Ramon | Hellfire

The Pride
Jonah | Leslie Dean | Tina Minoru | Robert Minoru | Geoffrey Wilder | Catherine Wilder | Victor Stein | Janet Stein | Dale Yorkes | Stacey Yorkes

Roxxon Corporation
Peter Scarborough | Terrors

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Agent Orange | Blacksmith | Jigsaw | Morty Bennett | Carson Wolf | Punisher

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Sarge | Snowflake | Jaco | Pax

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Sibyl | Atarah | Malachi | Luke | Baal-Gad | Abel | Isaiah

Sonny Burch's Gang
Sonny Burch | Uzman | Anitolov | Knox | Stoltz

The Coven
Morgan le Fay | Cassandra | Bronwyn

Flag Smashers
Flag-Smasher | Dovich | Gigi | DeeDee | Lennox | Nico | Matias | Diego

LAF
Georges Batroc | Louie

Disciples of Ammit
Arthur Harrow | Ammit

Time Variance Authority
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Others
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          Captain America Logo.png Villains

Comics
Absorbing Man | Adolf Hitler | A.I.M. | Aleksander Lukin | Anaconda | Arcade | Arnim Zola | Awesome Android | Baron Blood | Baron Wolfgang von Strucker | Baron Zemo | Batroc the Leaper | Beetle | Bi-Beast | Black Cat | Black Talon | Black Mamba | Black Widow | Blitzkrieg | Blizzard | Blood Brothers | Boomerang | Boomslang | Brothers Grimm | Bulldorzer | Bullseye | Cache | Carnage | Carrion | Chemistro | Constrictor | Cottonmouth | Controller | Count Nefaria | Cowled Commander | Crimson Dynamo | Crossbones | Dark Avengers | Darren Cross | Death Adder | Demogoblin | Doctor Faustus | Doppelganger | Eel | Electro | Famine | Fer-De-Lance | Firebrand | Fixer | Flag-Smasher | Ghost | Gorgon | Grand Director | Grant Ward | Graviton | Grey Gargoyle | Griffin | Grim Reaper | Grizzly | Heinz Kruger | Herr Kleiser | HYDRA | Hydro-Man | Iron Monger | Ironclad | Jack O' Lantern | Kang the Conqueror | Killer Shrike | King Cobra | Kingpin | Klaw | Korath the Pursuer | Korvac | Kraven the Hunter | Lady Deathstrike | Living Laser | Lizard | Loki | Lucia Von Bardas | Machinesmith | Madame Viper | Madcap | Magneto| Man-Ape | Mandarin | Master Man | Masters of Evil | Mentallo | Mesmero | Mister Hyde | M.O.D.A.M. | M.O.D.O.K. | Mole Man | Moonstone | Namor | Nightmare | Nightshade | Nitro | Piledriver | Princess Python | Puff Adder | Punisher | Punisher (Earth-95126) | Quicksand | Rattler | Red Ghost | Red Skull | Rhino | Ringmaster | Rock Python | Ronan | Roxxon | Säurespritze | Scarecrow | Scorpion | Sebastian Shaw | Secret Empire | Selene Gallio | Serpent Society | Shocker | Shockwave | Shriek | Sidewinder | Silver Sable | Sin | Sinister Six | Skeleton Crew | Slither | Slug | Songbird | Super-Adaptoid | Super-Apes | Superia | Super Patriot | Supreme Intelligence | Tarantula | Taskmaster | Terminus | Thanos | Thunderball | Thunderbolt Ross | Thunderbolts | Tiger Shark | Tinkerer | Titania | Titanium Man | Trapster | Typhoid Mary | U-Foes | Unicorn | Ultron | Vapor | Vector | Vermin | Vulture | Whiplash | Whirlwind | Winter Soldier | Wizard | Worthy | Wrecker | X-Ray | Yellow Claw | Zahnmörder | Zodiac

Movies
Captain America (1990): Red Skull | Valentina de Santis
Captain America: The First Avenger: HYDRA (Red Skull, Arnim Zola, Heinz Kruger, HYDRA Lieutenant, & Velt) | Adolf Hitler | Roeder | Hutter | Schneider
Heroes United: Iron Man and Captain America: HYDRA (Red Skull & Taskmaster)
Captain America: The Winter Soldier: HYDRA/STRIKE (Alexander Pierce, Winter Soldier, Crossbones, Jack Rollins, Jasper Sitwell, Russo, Senator Stern, Arnim Zola, Wolfgang von Strucker, List, Scarlet Witch, & Quicksilver) | Georges Batroc | Ferdinand Lopez | Gerald Durand
Captain America: Civil War: Helmut Zemo | Thunderbolt Ross | Winter Soldier | Scarlet Witch | HYDRA (Vasily Karpov, Josef, & Winter Soldiers) | Hero Mercs (Crossbones)

TV Series
The Falcon and The Winter Soldier: Winter Soldier | Flag Smashers (Flag-Smasher, Dovich, Gigi, DeeDee, Lennox, Nico, Matias, & Diego) | Sharon Carter | Baron Zemo | LAF (Georges Batroc & Louie) | Senator Atwood | Valentina Allegra de Fontaine
What If...?: Red Skull | Arnim Zola | Heinz Kruger | HYDRA's Champion

Video Games
The Amazing Spider-Man & Captain America in Doctor Doom's Revenge: Doctor Doom | Electro | Hobgoblin | Rhino | Boomerang | Grey Gargoyle | Oddball | Batroc the Leaper | Mysterio
Captain America and the Avengers: Red Skull | Crossbones | Klaw | Living Laser | Whirlwind | Sentinel | Grim Reaper | Wizard | Mandarin | Juggernaut | Ultron
Captain America Super Soldier: HYDRA (Red Skull, Arnim Zola, Madam Hydra & Baron Strucker) | Baron Zemo
Captain America: The Winter Soldier: Winter Soldier | Sin | Taskmaster | Shockwave | Serpent Society (King Cobra, Puff Adder & Diamondbak)

See Also
Agent Carter Villains

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