The Avengers No.1 (1963)

Posted by Tiki God at 18 November 2019

Category: Blog Posts

Alright here we are, 1963. The first… wait, the second… no hold on… the THIRD Marvel team-up book acting like it’s the first! It was released a solid three years after DC’s Brave and The Bold No.28 (First Team-Up of The JLA). The story starts off with Loki stuck on an island because he was a naughty boy from past crimes against Asgard. But somehow he’s still able to use his magical peepers to creep on folks across time and space. (it’s supposed to be astral projection, but Kirby just drew some big yellow angry eyes in the background of panels I kid you not!) So those angry eyes project some TNT on some railroad tracks to wig out the Hulk and get him to smash them. But to the drivers of a conveniently passing-by train, they think Hulk was just being mean and green and doing his thing. So after that tussle, The Teen Brigade catch word of this and start broadcasting the story to either help the Hulk. (You guys remember that iconic team right? The Teen Brigade? The five kids that own a ham radio in the attic of a barn? …Anybody? No? Well that’s alright because this is literally the first and last time I could ever remember reading about them.) So a few pages later, Donald Blake catches wind of the broadcast and is all like “This sounds like a job for ME! Or rather… Thor!” and then he does his thing with the hammer and the transforming andthe flying and yeah. Then Hank Pym hears the news and is all like “This sounds like a job for some bug/insect/ant related heroes!” Then Janet is all like “Wait for me!” and then Hank is all “Ugh women am I right?! It’s 1963 for pete’s sake!” to which I thoroughly rolled my eyes… but I pressed on! (oh also Janet calls him Henry Pym which I’ve got to imagine was an early name for the character before it was properly changed to Hank, but it was weird and worth noting that it only showed up on that one page and nowhere else in the book) Finally, Tony Stark hears the broadcast and is like “Hey I wonder if I could take on the Hulk just for fun! Also I’m using solar power for my suit and I love delivering exposition about my tech every ten seconds!” So after all that exposition, the band of random heroes all show up at the Teen’s radio barn only to have Thor tricked by another Loki illusion of the Hulk running by the window. Naturally he falls for it and leaves. No one else seems to even notice the 6ft Norse God leave the room however. Iron Man takes almost a full page to finally realize it and is all like, “Well hey I guess we didn’t need his help anyway right my dudes?” Hard cut to the next panel, The Hulk is in a clown costume performing in a circus to blend in! NO JOKE. I mean WHAT?! And the ringmaster to the crowd is all like “Yes he may look like a hideous green man in clown make-up but actually he’s a robot!” …again I thoroughly rolled my eyes once more, but I chuckled a little as to how ridiculous it was too so hey, good on you Stan. Anyway, the other performers he’s like “Oh wow no way man I can’t actually believe this dude is a robot you guys, golly…” Meanwhile, a convenient ant just happens to be watching the show and is all like “Hey Hank this robot that looks like a clown that looks like The Hulk is pretty sus… wanna check it out?” and Janet is all like “Wow that green clown is sure is ugly compared to Thor!” and then Hank tells her to shut up and stop daydreaming because as we all know Hank is a terrible person and Janet has always deserved better. So after a minute or two, all hell breaks loose when our heroes try to apprehend Hulk in the middle of his performance by trying all kinds of weird Silver Age ideas of entrapment! Meanwhile, Kirby’s art is killing it as Thor takes a boat across the Sea of Mist to the Isle of Silence where Loki is being held captive and it seriously looks so good for 1960’s comic art! Thor fights some roots and a volcano and some glass and a pink gooey monster and then like thirty Loki’s at once until he finally finds the real one! Back to the B-Plot, Hulk is still being stalked by the heroes after bailing on the circus. Hulk is fighting Iron Man in an auto factory, when Thor shows up like an idiot with Loki in tow. Loki breaks free(?) and then goes radioactive to spook everyone away. But almost to conveniently he just happened to be standing on a previously unmentioned trap-door and falls in. He’s then swarmed by ants and thrown into a lead lined tank (like the ones that hold fuel and radioactive stuff they would eventually dump out and pollute the ocean with back then) and somehow this works(?!) Loki is defeated by a tin can! 😛 So after that, the story wraps up in one page! The Hulk has no grudges over the brutal beating he was given the entire issue and is all like, “So are we a team or what?” Janet comes up with the name and Hank is all like “Yeah The ‘Avengers’! That’s a great idea I came up with and not you!” and everybody raises their arms like they had just won the Olympics or something. THE END …Geez *** Patreon: andrewcookston Instagram: a.cookston.photography

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