Ex-university professor Dr. Erik Selvig traveled to Puente Antiguo, New Mexico to assist Jane Foster, the astrophysicist daughter of a former colleague, in studying atmospheric disturbances she believed to be gateways between Earth and other worlds. while witnessing one such event, Selvig, along with Foster and her intern Darcy Lewis, accidentally struck Thor, newly exiled from Asgard, with Foster's truck, then transported him to County Hospital.
The next day, locals spoke of an immovable "satellite" in the desert - actually Thor's enchanted hammer, Mjolnir. When Thor asked for assistance to retrieve it, Selvig advised Foster to refuse, as he perceived Thor to be a delusional and dangerous individual for claiming Norse mythological stories were real. Despite the warning, Foster accompanied Thor to the site where S.H.I.E.L.D. had constructed a base camp around Mjolnir. Thor breached S.H.I.E.L.D.'s defenses but was discovered, and Foster left Selvig a voicemail asking for help before she was detected. After much convincing by Foster, Selvig went to S.H.I.E.L.D. and fabricated a story that persuaded Agent Phil Coulson to release Thor into Selvig's custody.
Taking Thor to a local bar, Selvig told the Asgardian that Foster cared for him, and then suggested Thor leave town before he could emotionally hurt her. But against his own advice, Selvig engaged Thor in a drinking contest that night and developed a fondness for him. Selvig's doubts of Thor's authenticity were soon cast aside when he witnessed four Asgardian warriors battle the lethal Destroyer weapon, as well as Thor's reunion with Mjolnir and reclamation of his power.
Sometime later, S.H.I.E.L.D. Director Nick Fury solicited Selvig to aid in studying an ancient cubed energy source; Thor's mischievous brother, Loki, influenced Selvig's decision to consent.
Following the events in New Mexico, while under the Asgardian Loki's subtle influence, Dr. Erik Selvig weaponized the captured Destroyer automaton for S.H.I.E.L.D. Because Selvig began acting strangely, Nick Fury assigned Agent Clint "Hawkeye" Barton to watch over Selvig's research at Project PEGASUS. When the Tesseract's energy levels spiked, Selvig proved unable to stop it and Loki arrived on Earth via a Tesseract-created portal. Needing Selvig's knowledge to open a larger portal for the alien Chitauri invasion, Loki used his scepter to completely corrupt Selvig into working on a Tesseract harness device using iridium as a stabilizer. While Selvig installed iridium onto the harness, he subconsciously created a failsafe to close the portal using Loki's scepter. Meanwhile, Loki allowed himself to be captured by S.H.I.E.L.D. to disrupt their plans to assemble heroes against him. Upon Loki's escape, the corrupted Selvig installed and activated the Tesseract harness atop Stark Tower, giving the invading Chitauri access to Earth. Selvig was subsequently knocked unconscious by a shock wave generated when Iron Man, unaware of the Tesseract's energy barrier, tried to blast the Tesseract harness device. Awakening with his mental faculties restored, Selvig realized what he had been forced to do and aided Black Widow in shutting down the Tesseract portal using Loki's scepter.
Mentally unbalanced by Loki's mental control preceding the Chitauri invasion of New York, astrophysicist Erik Selvig became obsessed with the Convergence of the Nine Realms, which he believed foreshadowed a coming universal cataclysm. Determined to prove his theory, Selvig arrived at Stonehenge with a series of gravimetric spikes of his own design to detect the spatial disruptions caused by the Convergence, but his choice to completely disrobe disturbed the monument's visitors, and police confined him to a psychiatric ward.
Seeking Selvig's help after Jane Foster unintentionally absorbed the Aether, Darcy Lewis and Ian Boothby arranged his release. Upon Thor and Foster's return from Asgard, the pair met with Selvig, Lewis, and Boothby to devise a plan to stop the Dark Elf Malekith from using the Aether, which he had claimed from Foster, to cast the Nine Realms into eternal darkness. Selvig's research allowed him to identify Greenwich as the location where Malekith would unleash the Aether. With Selvig's gravimetric spikes modified to create interspatial portals within the Convergence, the four scientists occupied Malekith's forces while Thor fought their leader. After Malekith's defeat, Selvig was present when Thor returned from Asgard, fulfilling his promise to reunite with Foster.
Working as a professor at the Royal Holloway University of London in Surrey, England, Dr. Erick Selvig found his friend Thor waiting for him outside after class. Though Thor was attempting to look inconspicuous despite his massive size, Selvig recognized him instantly. Thor explained he needed Selvig's assistance in finding the earthly location of the Water of Sight, so Thor could make sense of a disturbing vision induced by Wanda Maximoff's mental manipulation during a battle. Thor explained that the special magical pool exists in every realm, and that if the water spirits accepted him, he could complete the vision he had while under Wanda's power, and find what he missed. Selvig helped him find the pool, but cautioned that legends did not offer a good fate for those who entered the Water. While Selvig stood watch, Thor painfully but successfully continued his vision, seeing the gathering of four of the six Infinity Stones, including the one within Loki's scepter. Later, after the Battle of Sokovia, Selvig was seen at the new Avengers headquarters in upstate New York, apparently employed to assist in getting it fully functional.
- Portrayed by Stellan Skarsgård
- 12 Appearances of Erik Selvig (Earth-199999)
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