Comicbook: The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes
"You can fight it all you want, but we are going to be friends, all of us! It's inevitable! We've saved the world like a hundred times now, we've been through horrible things, we've saved each other's lives! We are in this together, and it's time you all started acting like it!"
After The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes
premiered on Disney XD
, Marvel Comics
released a four-issue collection of comics (January- April, 2011) set in the show's universe. The first three each contained two comics, plus some character biographies. The first comic in each of these books is basically a standard story of The Avengers
fighting a threat that one hero cannot fend alone. The second comic in each of these books features a short story in which two select heroes team up against an evacuee of the breakout. The fourth issue deviated from this format, presenting one relatively long comic.
Additional comics started coming in 2012, under the "all-ages" Marvel Universe
banner. The first 12 issues in this series each contain two all-new comics. Issues 13-18 present Film Comics
of the first six episodes of the cartoon's second season. (For tropes related to the Film Comics, visit the trope pages of the show and the season 2 episode recaps.)
Tropes associated with the comics:
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The Limited Series
- All There in the Manual: How Crimson Dynamo joined the Masters of Evil is explained in the story "Obsession", and his bio in the same issue revealed his real name (It's Ivan Vanko). It also confirmed in "Team" that the robot Iron Man fought in "Iron Man is Born" is the show's version of Ultimo.
- Anachronic Order: The graphic novel compiling the first seven comics seems to jump around from one month after "Living Legend"note , to some time before "Gamma World"note , to the day after "The Kang Dynasty".note Also, it seems like anyone's guess when the even-numbered chapters take place.
- Art Shift: The miniseries' even-numbered stories have more realistic artwork. The same person who drew those stories also drew some splash panels in the last one, whenever Wasp takes photographs of the fight against Ultimo.
- Batman Gambit: The Hulk of all people pulls one when dealing with a Brainwashed and Crazy Thor in "Savage". Knowing that Thor would never want to harm a defenseless mortal, he transforms into Bruce Banner during battle. Thor's hypnosis successfully lifts, although Hulk admits he wouldn't have minded if his gambit failed.
- Canon Immigrants: Bartoc the Leaper, Adaptoid, the Winter Guard, Collector, and Grandmaster.
- Caption Humor: Accompanies Wasp's photographs in "Team".
- Continuity Cameo:
- War Machine helps Iron Man defeat Crimson Dynamo in a flashback from "Obsession".
- Wasp has Peter Parker take a group shot of the Avengers at the end of "Team", the final comic.
- Continuity Nod: "Team" begins with the same news report seen at the beginning of the Micro-Episode "Iron Man is Born!"
- Also, after the second defeat of Ultimo, Iron Man catches the robot's head while striking the same pose from his first scene in that short. ("And...Deja vu.")
- Energy Absorption: Ultimo's power, demonstrated in "Team". Eventually, the Avengers have to resort to teaming up with the Masters of Evil in order to overload it.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Each comic is named after a quality or ability that someone develops or explores.
- In Medias Res: "Trust", "Mutual Respect", and "Courage" each begin in the middle of a fight between two Avengers and a villain rarely seen in the cartoon.
- Magic Pants: It's probably just an inconsistency error, but when Hulk changes into Bruce Banner during "Savage", Banner wears only the infamous purple pants. The next time they show him, he's wearing a sweatshirt as well.
- Oh, Crap: After Ultimo returns at the beginning of "Team":
Wasp: Okay, what is that?
Hawkeye: Does it matter? Oh, by the way, I quit.
- Power Copying: Adaptoid's power, demonstrated in "Adaptation".
- Team Shot: "Team" begins with Jan trying in vain to get the other Avengers to pose for a photograph. They eventually have a picture taken together at the end of the comic.
- Title Drop: The Avengers' group photo seen on the last page of "Team" has a caption reading, "Whether they [the guys] admit it or not, we're a team. We're family. We're Earth's mightiest heroes!"
- The Adjectival Superhero: The Mighty Ms. Marvel lampshades this at the end of "The Skrull Skull" as she suggests that she and the Mighty Thor become "The Mightiest Avengers".
- Art Evolution: The drawings look closer to the show than the Limited Series did. Unfortunately, the style devolves starting at around issue #5.
- Back from the Dead: The Grey Gargoyle
- Battle in the Center of the Mind: Captain America has one against Lord Nightmare in "The Last American Dream", with help from Sleepwalker.
- Brought Down to Normal: "Baby Steps" has Tony Stark temporarily transplant The Vision into a less powerful body so that Tony can check his usual body for glitches. Vision sees this as the closest he'll get to feeling like a human.
- Cain and Abel: Inverted with Scorpio and Nick Fury.
- Canon Immigrants: Mandarin, Fing Fang Foom, Phil Coulson, Scorpio, Magneto, Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver, and many, many more.
- Cassandra Truth: Hawkeye refuses to believe the story Black Panther shares about King Solomon's Frogs, which connects them not only with a Biblical monarch, but also with Aladdin and the Loch Ness Monster.
- Character Check: "The Leader's Legions" portrays Hank Pym as Ant-Man, instead of Yellowjacket.
- Continuity Nod: In "It Came From Inner Space!", the microscopic Psycho-Man decides to try and conquer the normal-sized "Macroverse" after a larger item causes destruction in his empire- one of the money stacks that accidentally shrank to smaller than microscopic size in "To Steal An Ant-Man".
- The Corruption: The titular weapon of "Mayhem of the Madbomb!" can increase people's anger and strengthen their violent tendencies.
- Covers Always Lie:
- The third issue has Giant-Man on the cover, even though neither of the comics within have him.
- The fifth issue gives Black Widow the same treatment.
- The sixteenth issue adapts "Welcome To The Kree Empire", yet features a cover that doesn't even remotely anything that happened in the episode: Captain Mar-Vell and Ronan the Accuser imprisoning Iron Man, Captain Americaspoiler , and Ms. Marvel in a sphere.
- A Day in the Limelight:
- Some comics only star one Avenger.
- "Rise of the Locust" stars Nick Fury instead of the Avengers.
- Eiffel Tower Effect: "Mayhem of the Madbomb!" takes place in the Empire State Building. Black Panther demands himself and Hulk to reach the bomb at the top with stealth, fearing a battle with the HYDRA agents inside could damage the building, while Hulk doesn't care if they have to destroy the structure to save the city.
- Every Episode Ending: The last panel of each comic has an encircled A in the corner.
- Evil Versus Evil: "Artistic License" sees Captain America's efforts to save some valuable French paintings from Porcupine get interrupted by Bartoc the Leaper coming to fight Porcupine for at least one of the paintings.
- Fantastic Racism: Wasp endures this in "Magneto Walks the Earth". The newspaper falsely calls her a mutant, prompting a protest outside Avengers Mansion. She also gets personally invited to join Magneto's crusade against humans.
- Friendly Enemies: Thor and The Incredible Hercules.
- Foreshadowing: A time-hopping sequence in "King Solomon's Frogs" briefly lands Hawkeye and Black Panther in a battle between the Avengers and Galactus, the villain of the Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes series finale. Panther also considers the whole adventure an omen of Kang's eventual escape from prison.
- "Freaky Friday" Flip: MODOC switches Iron Man's and Hawkeye's minds in "Brain Games", using what Hawkeye refers to as, a "Freaky Friday gizmo".
- Fusion Dance: "This Man, That Monster!" gives Captain America the powers and appearance of the Incredible Hulk.
- Girls' Night Out Episode: In "The Skies Are Doomed!", Wasp and Black Widow face Doctor Doom.
- Hoist by Her Own Petard: "The Serpent Crown" has Madame Viper use an enchanted crown to summon a snake demon to help her Take Over the World. However, the demon instead tries to attack her, then does the same to everyone else who tries on the crown.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: "This Man, That Monster!" opens with Bruce Banner having another scientist ( The Mad Thinker in disguise) drain his gamma energy so he could resume the life of a normal physicist.
- Incredible Shrinking Man: Wasp shrinks Iron Man and Captain America in "They Came From Inner Space!", so they can help the Microns stop Psycho-Man from conquering the normal-sized "Macroverse".
- Kick the Dog: In "Magneto Walks the Earth", when Magneto strangles Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver for begging him not to harm any humans, Wasp exclaims, "It's like you're trying to be extra evil!"
- Lampshade Hanging: The constant attacks on Stark Tower get this in "Enter the Mandarin."
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: The fifth issue has 10 Avengers, but came out when the cartoon only had seven leads. Its release happened two weeks before The Vision pulled a Heel-Face Turn, roughly a month before Hank Pym became Yellowjacket, and two months before Hulk became pardoned for destruction he didn't really cause.
- Pick up one of the many comics guest-starring Black Widow without watching the first season of the show, and the conclusion to the subplot about her possibly becoming a double agent will lose a little of its surprise.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall/Mythology Gag: In the Recap Episode "Assembly Line," each of the entries that Nick Fury and Maria Hill record about events from the first season has a number containing the respective episode's production code (or codes, for events from multi-part episodes).
- Lower Deck Episode: "World's Smartest Heroes" has Hulk, Wasp, and Hawkeye defend Avengers Mansion from Wizard, with help from an Ascended Fanboy.
- Moment Killer: Hawkeye finally lands a date with Black Widow at the end of "My Dinner with HYDRA," but it gets cut short by Widow getting a call for the two of them to free some hostages from Baron Zemo in Alcatraz.
- Nonstandard Character Design: Agent Coulson doesn't look as stylized as the other characters, since he debuted in Marvel's live-action movies, and never showed up in the Earth's Mightiest Heroes cartoon.
- Off Model: Unfortunately happens more often here than in the cartoon.
- Painting the Medium:
- Iron Man has yellow word balloons with red font, to match his armor.
- Thor has his dialogue written in a slightly-old-looking script font.
- The Vision has yellow word balloons with black text.
- Series Continuity Error: "When the Grey Gargoyle Strikes" takes place after the first season finale, yet Iron Man still has his Mark VII armor. Even more confusing, Skrull Captain America has his original costume, and his photonic shield, even though the cartoon had already shown that he didn't get that shield until after he started wearing a new costume.
- Baddies that got locked up in Prison 42 during either the cartoon or the limited series sometimes become the villains of these comics, as if the Avengers never defeated them before.
- Sir/Lady Not-Appearing-on-This-Cover: Most notably, no Avengers bar Black Panther appear on the cover of the "Michael Korvac" adaptation.
- Spiritual Successor: To Marvel Adventures.
- Suddenly Voiced: Fing Fang Foom, after the Avengers free him from Mandarin's mind control in "Enter the Mandarin".
- Title Drop: Either Maria Hill or Agent Coulson calls the Avengers, "Earth's mightiest heroes," in "Assembly Line."
- Weapon of Mass Destruction: The Zerobomb, which S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA race to find in "Absolute Zero". This bomb can cause so much destruction, that the inventor instantly regretted creating it, and hid both it and himself from the Soviets.
- Working Through The Chicken Pox: Iron Man does this in "Germ Of a Chance".