Sunday, May 11, 2008

If you've already seen the blockbuster that is Iron Man, hopefully you stuck around during the credits to see a bonus scene featuring something fanboys have been waiting for since the superhero film boom began! Samuel L. Jackson puts in a cameo appearance as a jaded Nick Fury -- director of SHIELD and the man overseeing a little something he describes as, The Avengers Initiative!

The scene, casting the espionage leader in his Ultimate guise, sets the stage for the prospect of overlapping storylines and team-ups in future Marvel movies. Already hotly rumored was the prospect of a Hulk/Iron Man joint sequel - a confirmed cameo appearance by Downey Jr in June's Incredible Hulk only adding feul to that fire. However, we are now faced with the shocking possibility of an Avengers movie!

For those who don't know: The Avengers are a superhero collective with which Iron Man has held membership since their very first appearance in 1963! The group followed in the tradition of teams like the Justice Society and Invaders; teaming together some of the company's most popular superhero characters of the time. Since, the Avengers mythology has spun out exponentially, keeping Iron Man close to the team(s) even when they were divided.

Avengers #214 (December 1981)
"Three Angels Fallen!" Shooter/Hall

Iron Man and the Avengers head out west to come face-to-flaming skull face with the demon biker, Ghost Rider!

What if...? #70 (February 1995)
"The End of the Matter" Dixon/Barney/Hudson

With the Fantastic Four nowhere to be seen; the Avengers are forced to answer the call as Galactus attempts to devour Earth!

Thor #1 (July 1998)
"In Search of the Gods" Jurgens/Romita Jr

Having returned from a parallel universe -- the Avengers are forced to rally when a wayward soldier comes into posession of the legendary Destroyer armor. With existence in peril, the Avengers face the death they had already cheated when the Destroyer lifts his visor!

New Invaders #0 (August 2004)
"Once an Invader..." Jacobsen/Austen/Smith

When the Invaders are manipulated by the Red Skull into invading the oil rich nation of Mazikhandar; the Avengers respond to put a stop to their march, but do these youngsters have the chops necessary to take down their WWII predecessors?

Marvel Knights: Spider-man #11 (April 2005)
"Last Stand" Millar/Dodson/Dodson

When Spidey faces the menace of a new Sinister Twelve -- the Avengers come to the rescue to put a stomping on the lethal foes of Spider-man!

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