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Comic Book / First Avengers Team

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Captain America: "Wait a moment, team. I think that the Mole Man is in the other direction!"
The Avengers were created in 1963 by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. Although there were changes from the very begining, the first team is usually considered the one from Avengers 1 to Avengers 16. Several classic villains were introduced by this time.

It began with Loki, Thor's brother and archenemy, who was imprisoned on the Isle of Silence for his crimes. Searching for a pawn to get rid of Thor for him, he found the Hulk. Creating an illusion of dynamite on a train track, Loki tricked the Hulk into destroying the track, prompting a manhunt for him. Figuring that the Hulk needed help, Rick Jones and the Teen Brigade sent a distress call to the Fantastic Four, but it was redirected by Loki to the radio of Dr. Donald Blake, Thor's alter ego. The call was also inadvertently heard by Iron Man, Ant-Man and the Wasp. They all defeated Loki, and organized as a team. The Hulk left the following issue after realizing how much the others distrusted him, but the Avengers soon found a new member: Captain America, who was frozen in the arctic since WWII. Captain America's enemy, Baron Zemo, would create the Masters of Evil as the recurring rogues gallery of the Avengers.



  • Actually a Doombot: The team has to fight a Spider-Man robot, built by Kang. It defeats all the Avengers, only to be defeated by the real Spider-Man, who doesn't like copyright violations.
  • Adaptation Distillation: The Ultimates, The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes! and the film all took some bits of those early issues. The animated series is the closest one. Same original line-up, organized by circumstances, and the name is the Wasp's initiative. The villain makes them fight against Hulk, who leaves the team in disgust. Captain America, who was frozen in the Artic after WWII, is freed and found by the Avengers, who make him their new member.
  • Ancient Astronauts: In his return, Captain America captures an alien with a weapon that turns people into stone, who crashed on Earth centuries ago and couldn't repair his ship. Cap reasons that this alien caused the myth of the medusa.
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  • Argentina Is Nazi-Land: Baron Zemo, a Nazi war criminal, hiding in a jungle somewhere in South America.
  • Back for the Finale: After the Masters of Evils' first defeat, only Zemo remained, with new allies Enchantress and Executioner. Black Knight and Melter return to the team for the final battle, which was also the last adventure of the first Avengers team.
  • Big Damn Heroes: The main idea of the comic book.
  • Blood Knight: The Executioner
  • Breaking the Fellowship: When Iron Man, Giant Man and the Wasp took new members, and temporarily resigned.
  • Card-Carrying Villain:
    • Loki, God of Evil!
    • And, of course, the Masters of Evil. Maybe they figured since they were being led by a genuine Nazi, subtlety was a lost cause.
  • Commonality Connection: Hulk, on the outs with the Avengers, strikes up a friendship with Namor, because they both hate humanity.
  • Conqueror from the Future: Kang the Conqueror
  • Covers Always Lie: Issue 15: "Now, by my hand, shall perish a villain". Don't raise your hopes: Baron Zemo kills himself by accident when fighting Captain America.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Count Nefaria, one of the wealthiest men in the world, is angry because the Avengers foiled his henchmen from stealing some furs, so he arranges a complex plan to defeat them... which included moving his whole castle, stone by stone, from Europe to the US. Couldn't he simply buy those furs in the first place?
  • Dead Sidekick: Bucky, whose death haunted Captain America for quite some time.
  • Early Installment Weirdness:
    • Can you imagine Hulk costumed as a clown, with costume and make-up, making tricks to entertain the circus audience? (and no, he was not being mind-controlled). Not a "what if...?", not a dream, not an imaginary tale, not an alternate universe, not a parody by Sergio Aragones... Avengers #1, by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. 'nuff said!
    • When Immortus summons historical people to fight against the Avengers, he summons Hercules against Thor. Some time afterwards, Hercules was created as a steady Marvel character, and bared little resemblance with this early appearance. Kurt Busiek would retcon it as a Space Phantom disguised as Hercules in Avengers Forever.
  • Easily Thwarted Alien Invasion: The Space Phantom. Why send a single alien, and not a whole army? Or, if it's too expensive, why not simply 5 Space Phantoms, and have each one replace each Avenger on a single stroke? Yes, Thor would resist, but then it would be him against "phantomed" Hulk, Iron Man, Giant Man and the Wasp. Well, ok, Hulk, Iron Man and Giant Man, and without the Wasp's interference...
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: The power of the Space Phantom
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Hulk. Hero, villain, fugitive, sidekicker, wants to be left alone, wants to crush the Avengers, cunning, axe crazy... it seems that Lee and Kirby had not decided yet what kind of character they wanted Hulk to be.
  • He's Back!: Captain America, the old character from Timely Comics.
  • Human Popsicle: Captain America, As You Know.
  • Killed Off for Real: Baron Heinrich Zemo. He never came back to life (except as a living mook or similar stuff). Have in mind that the modern Baron Zemo is Helmut Zemo, his son, not him, just a Legacy Character.
  • Legion of Doom: The Masters of Evil.
  • Man of Kryptonite: The Melter was this to Iron Man, seeing as his beams could melt metal.
  • Missed the Call: Everything began with it. If the Fantastic Four got the distress call in time, the Avengers would not have existed.
  • The Mole: Deconstructed by Wonder Man
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Nice job, Loki. If not for you, the Avengers would have not existed.
  • Put on a Bus: The founding Avengers, to make way for the Second Avengers Team, with Iron Man, Thor, Ant-Man, and the Wasp continuing their adventures in their own books.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Wonder Man, but you should already know the end of that story
  • Refused by the Call: Rick Jones, a mere teenager with no powers, thought that he could be in the same team as an Asgardian God, a science genius with a battle armor, another science genius and his assistant who can change their size, and a World War II living legend. Good luck! He couldn't even become Captain America's sidekick.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Although he's set up as one of Captain America's enemies from the war, Zemo was first introduced in the pages of the Avengers.
  • Screw This, I'm Out of Here!: Hulk is a founding member of the team, but after the Space Phantom's manipulations in issue 2, he leaves in a mood, thinking the Avengers don't trust him. He wouldn't officially rejoin the Avengers, angrily rejecting any attempt to reconnect, up until Avengers Vs. X-Men in 2012.
  • Single-Stroke Battle: Captain America, the old character of Timely Comics, has returned, and the Avengers are fighting against Namor, another character from Timely, who returned some time ago in the Fantastic Four comic book. Captain America heads to him, to the battle between both classic characters... and Namor simply tosses him aside, in a single panel. This was lampshaded some years later in the Avengers-Defenders crossover.
  • Surveillance as the Plot Demands: When Hulk leaves the team, Namor was spying on him.
  • The Magic Versus Technology War: Iron Man vs. Merlin. 'Nuff said!
  • Villain Team-Up: Namor and Hulk, and the Mole Man and the Red Ghost
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Rick Jones and the "Teen Brigade". Let's avoid further comments.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: When he woke up, Captain America outmatches all the Avengers... and refuses to fight against the Wasp.