Episode 4: Captain America Join…The Avengers

avengers-4

Writer: Stan Lee
Penciller: Jack Kirby
Inker: George Roussos
Letterer: Art Simek

Plot Summary

Picking up in the last few panels of issue #3, Prince Namor, The Sub-Mariner, flees from his recent fight with the Avengers. Eventually making his way to an Eskimo village, Namor finds the locals worshiping a human figure frozen in ice. Namor decides to take out his frustrations on the locals and in the resulting tantrum, the ice figure is flung into the water. As the frozen figure moves down the Gulf Stream, it is eventually thawed and discovered by the Avengers, who are returning home in their jet powered bathyscaph. Pulling the figure inside, they quickly discover that he is in fact Captain America. Thought dead since the end of the Second World War, the team is even more astonished to find that their guest is still alive. Cap wakes up in the middle of a flashback, screaming for his former teen aged sidekick, Bucky. He quickly settles down however, accepting the fact that he failed to save Bucky, and  the Avengers begin to interrogating him. After a brief display of his prowess, the team accepts that he is in fact that real Cap and inquire as to how he came to be frozen for all these years. Cap proceeds to explain, via flashback, that he and Bucky were attempting to stop a drone weapon when it detonated, killing Bucky. The Avengers finally return to New York to much fanfare, but the gathering is quickly cut short when the Avengers are turned to stone by some unknown force. Captain America, who was resting at the time of their arrival, exits the bathyscaph and only finds Avengers statues. After wandering around Manhattan for a bit, Cap finds a hotel and settles down to get some much needed sleep. However, much to his horror Cap is awoken by a figure bearing a striking resemblance to Bucky, that of Rick Jones.  After having learned of their arrival, Rick discovers that something has happened to the Avengers and searches out Cap to find out what. Overcoming his initial shock, Cap quickly takes action and begins investigating the strange occurrence. With the help of the ever ready Teen Brigade, Cap locates the individual responsible and a short struggle ensues. To his surprise, Cap discovers that the man is in fact an alien who crashed on earth hundreds of years ago. The visitor tells Cap that he has been seeking help for all this time and reveals that he may, in part, be responsible for the ancient myth of Medusa. Cap finally discovers that Namor made a deal with the alien to get rid of the Avengers in exchange for Namor freeing the alien’s crashed ship. The alien agrees to restore the Avengers in exchange for their help in freeing his ship, which they promptly agree to do. Namor, meanwhile, has run into a group of loyal Atlantean guards who join him in attacking the Avengers while they complete their work. The fight goes back and forth several times until Namor takes Rick Jones hostage, at which point Cap, who has been carefully studying the situation, springs to action. Just as Cap and Namor begin to grapple, the island erupts. Namor believes the sea has granted him a boon in the form of an undersea earthquake and quickly flees from its devastation, assuming the Avengers to be destroyed. Unfortunately for Namor, he is incorrect and the “earthquake” is actually the launch of the alien space craft and the avengers have survived. The issue ends with the team offering Captain America membership on the team, which he gladly accepts.

Avengers

Ant-Man
Captain America
Iron Man
Thor
Wasp

Villains

Namor

Show Notes

Captain America Comics 1
Captain America lays out the Furher on the cover of his premiere issue.
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Episode 3: The Avengers Meet The Sub-Mariner

Avengers 3

Writer: Stan Lee
Penciller: Jack Kirby
Inker: Paul Reinman
Letterer: Sam Rosen

Plot Summary

This issue begins with the remaining Avengers discussing the events of the previous issue and deciding that they cannot let Hulk just run around on his own. Iron Man uses a piece of Stark tech to project an image of himself to various other heroes including the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and the X-Men, attempting to gain aid in their attempts to locate Hulk. Much to his frustration, none of the other heroes are available to aid the Avengers in their search. Back in New Mexico, Rick Jones manages to find Hulk fishing a jeep out of a lake, the driver having bailed out and run away in fright after seeing Hulk. Rick Jones joins Hulk and convinces him to return to the secret cave lab that Banner has set up. Within the lab is equipment which uses gamma rays to forcibly transform Hulk back into Banner. The equipment works and Rick helps Bruce into bed. Unfortunately, Rick failed to use a high enough dose of gamma rays and while lying in bed, Banner reverts back to the Hulk and smashes through the barred door. Rick alerts the Iron Man who in turn contacts the remaining Avengers and the team converges on Hulk’s location. As the heroes arrive, they each attack Hulk in turn, without much effect. Making use of his superior knowledge of the local terrain, Hulk dives into an old mine tunnel and eventually escapes on a train. After leaving the train, Hulk hides out in a truck hauling dirt and after being dumped into a stream, Hulk makes his way out to sea. Several days go by and Hulk is eventually pulled aboard a passing cargo ship, nearly drowned. Watching all of this is Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner. Upon regaining his strength, Hulk jumps ship and heads for a deserted island where he can be alone. Much to his surprise and frustration, Hulk finds Namor waiting for him. Namor announces that he wants Hulk’s help in getting his revenge against the surface dwellers that have “ruined” his life (Fantastic Four Annual #1). Hulks only desires to be left alone and so he proceeds to assault Namor. After being defeated by Namor in the water, Hulk agrees to help, though both men secretly plot to betray one another after the Avengers have been dealt with. The duo issue a challenge to the Avengers to fight them in Gibraltar. The Avengers promptly accept the call to battle and vow that this time they won’t be pulling their punches. A significant fight ensues which neither side is winning until Hulk begins to turn back into Banner after being verbally assaulted by Namor. The helpless Banner runs away, leaving Namor to fend for himself. Namor is nearly defeated but is able to get back in contact with water and promptly retreats. The Avengers choose not to pursue Namor because of how valorous he was, but also recognize that they may come to regret their decision.

Avengers

Ant-Man
Iron Man
Thor
Wasp

Villains

Hulk
Namor