The Avengers

Features

"What the Heck Was in Scarlet Witch's Closet?" & More Unresolved Stories

2 hours ago
By Brian Cronin

CSBG's archive of notable unresolved comic plots includes things like what was in the Scarlet Witch's closet in "New Avengers" after "House of M?"

When Did Iron Man Become Tony Stark's Bodyguard?

17 hours ago
By Brian Cronin

Everyone knows Iron Man was Tony Stark's bodyguard for decades in the comics, but that wasn't always the case. So when did the arrangement start?

Articles

Axel-In-Charge - 4/29

18 hours ago
By Axel Alonso

Spencer Promises "Avengers Standoff" Fallout Leads to Major Marvel Stories

22 hours ago
By Dave Richards

Follow "The Evolution of Captain America in Television & Film" in New Compilation Video

Yesterday
By Meagan Damore

This Iron Man Xbox One Will Make You Forget All About Team Cap

2 days ago
By Kevin Melrose

WATCH: Iron Man Stars as "Gladiator" in Animated "Hero Swap"

2 days ago
By Kevin Melrose

Team Captain America Fires Back at Team Iron Man, Ignites Fireworks in Singapore

Sat, April 23rd
By Lauren Gallaway

WATCH: The Evolution of Iron Man Over 50 Years of Television & Film

Fri, April 22nd
By Anthony Couto

11 Superheroes Who Turned Down Avengers Membership

Thu, April 21st
By Brian Cronin

EXCL. PREVIEW: "International Iron Man" #2 Turns the Mystery of Tony's Parents Deadly

Thu, April 21st
By CBR News Team

EXCL. PREVIEW: "Avengers Standoff" Reaches its Climax in "Assault on Pleasant Hill Omega"

Thu, April 21st
By CBR News Team

Jon Favreau: "Superhero Movies are Going to be Around for a Long Time"

Wed, April 20th
By Lauren Gallaway

"New Avengers'" Ewing on American Kaiju in "Standoff," Taking AIM at "Civil War II"

Wed, April 20th
By Dave Richards

Tony Stark Created an A.I. That Took Over the World... in 1968?!

Tue, April 19th
By Brian Cronin

Joss Whedon is 'Very Proud of Ultron,' Reflects on Press Tour Comments from Last Year

Mon, April 18th
By Lauren Gallaway

Marvel Movie vs. Marvel Comic: Breaking Down the Opposing Sides of "Civil War"

Sat, April 16th
By Brett White

Face Front, True Believers! There's Now a Marvel Credit Card

Fri, April 15th
By Kevin Melrose

Vision's Top 5 Fashion Statements

Fri, April 15th
By Brian Cronin

EXCL. PREVIEW: Young Thor Has a Viking Adventure in "Mighty Thor" #6

Thu, April 14th
By CBR News Team

Biography

The Avengers

Marvel Comics' flagship superhero team The Avengers was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby in the spring of 1963 and published later that year in "The Avengers" #1. At that time, it was a novel idea for a group of heroes to team up; comics were almost exclusively populated with titles focusing on a single hero or at most a pair, usually in a hero and sidekick role. With "The Avengers," Marvel architects Lee & Kirby brought together the comic company's top heroes of the time under a single banner. Labeled "Earth's Mightiest Heroes," the group consisted of established characters Ant-Man, Wasp, Iron Man, Thor and Hulk. Although considered a founding member, Captain America didn't appear until three issues later, quickly becoming the group's lynchpin and most popular member.

"The Avengers" title proved quite popular on comics racks, quickly becoming one of Marvel's top sellers alongside "Amazing Spider-Man," which also debuted in 1963. As time went on, the roster of the team proved fluid, starting with several members resigning and Captain America recruiting former villains and newer heroes into the mix. While there's almost always at least one founding member in the team at all times, the tradition of an ever-rotating roster has been fertile fodder for storylines, including the ever popular recruitment drives. Over seventy-five characters have claimed membership in the Avengers team in its 45-plus year history, ranging from skilled humans, mutants, aliens, robots and even a few gods.

A new issue of "The Avengers" has been published virtually every month since September 1963, with the series proving popular enough to warrant numerous spin-off series. As of August 2010, there are four Avengers titles including the flagship, with additional limited series and even some alternate universe versions in the Ultimate and Marvel Adventures lines. Although "The Avengers" has been Marvel's de facto flagship title since its inception in the early 1960s, it was usurped as sales leader for years by Marvel's other big team book, "Uncanny X-men." The mutants' sales domination continued up until five years ago when writer Brian Michael Bendis took over the book.

In 2004, Bendis and artist David Finch were enlisted by Marvel to take the title and the team in a new direction. With the four issue story-arc titled "Avengers: Disassembled," the Avengers team as it stood was effectively broken up after the deaths of several key members and the long-running title was cacelled. From those ashes, Marvel launched a new book titled "New Avengers" which saw classic Avengers members partnered with newer heroes not traditionally associated with the brand such as Spider-Man and Wolverine. Writer Brian Bendis was already on his way to becoming one of Marvel's top writers, and his work on "New Avengers" cemented him as Marvel's resident big thinker. Popular crossovers and event limited series such as "Civil War," "Secret Invasion" and "Siege" only bolstered the team's renewed success, putting the team once again front-and-center on the comic shelves and the sales charts.

At the same time The Avengers were once again finding their footing, Marvel's movie business was kicking into high gear. After experiencing moderate success with the "Blade" movies and the first "Hulk" movie, Marvel invested its own money into the 2008 film "Iron Man," which ultimately proved so successful it led to the greenlighting of a stream of films centered on Marvel's key heroes – all of which were founding Avengers. A second Iron Man film followed in 2010, with films for Thor and Captain America planned in 2011 and a keystone "Avengers" movie promised in 2012 from fan-favorite director Joss Whedon.

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