There's been talk that super-spy Nick Fury was involved with the formation of the Avengers. This doesn't really make a lot of sense unless he somehow was involved with that incident involving Loki and Hulk.
In the pages of New Avengers, we are finding out about the secret history of Nick Fury. If you read New Avengers #9, you saw the flashback to 1959 and the mention of the Avengers Initiative. And then there's the cover to New Avengers #12 dealing with the first Avengers. They sure don't look like any Avengers I've seen before. Who were these first Avengers and what do they have to do with the survival of one of the Avengers today?
== TEASER ==
Let's take a look at who appears on the cover of New Avengers #12:
- Starting in the center we have Dominic Fortune. There have been a couple different Dominic Fortunes but it turns out they are the same man. He started off as a mercenary in the 1930s and eventually found and replicated an imperfect version of the Super Soldier Serum (which explains his youthful appearance). Of all these first Avengers, it makes sense why he might be able to help the wounded Avenger in issue #9.
- Continuing clockwise we have Dum Dum Dugan next. He was in the Howling Commandoes with Fury and was also hanging out with him in 1959 when Fury was approached about the Avengers Initiative.
- Ulysses Bloodstone is another soldier of fortune who built up a fortune working as a mercenary in the 20th Century.
- Kraven the Hunter was a big game hunter that was convinced to hunt Spider-Man when we first saw him. He was done mercenary work but how could he have been around in the late 1950s? It's likely that with all the herbs and potions he's taken, one of them helped to slow down his aging.
- Sabretooth an Avenger? This is almost getting crazy...almost. Victor Creed is another individual with an extended lifespan, due to his healing factor. What would he be doing working with this government-controlled Avengers? He did spend some time in Team X, a CIA covert ops unit. Obviously his name was in the rolodex of the President and/or Nick Fury when it came to forming this team.
- Namora is the cousin of Namor. She worked with Ulysses Bloodstone in the 50s as a member of the Monster Hunters. She was also a member of Agents of Atlas which was formed by the FBI in 1958.
At first glance, it seems these individuals have nothing in common. After thinking about them, you can see they do have a few things in common. They all have had extended lifespans through natural or chemical means. Most of them can be considered mercenaries or have worked with a government agency in the 1950s. All of them would be expected to keep something like this a secret since they're not really the chatting type to discuss their past.
While this may be another case of retconning history, I have to say the idea of this group of characters working together is very interesting. They're not a group of individuals you'd want to go up against and the idea of them together makes you wonder what the heck the reason was for their formation. With the different personalities on this team, it makes sense that they wouldn't last long as an actual team. Most would be in it for the money and they simply wouldn't get along well with others.
I'm normally against secret histories being injected into what we already know and being expected to accept it. These individuals may be the first group to be called Avengers but, so far, it doesn't look like that will really affect the Avengers' history that we already know. These guys were brought together by the President and Nick Fury. Our Avengers sort of got together on their own and came up with the name themselves...unless that changes as well. Whatever the case, I do want to see this group of Avengers trying to work together and can't wait to see what the threat they have to face is.
Will this group of Avengers change the Avengers we've known all these years? I don't see that as the case but then again, you never know.