Appearing in "Even the Losers/The Taking of 42"
- Shadow Initiative
- Johnny Guitar (Jonathan Logan) (Main story and flashback) (Joins group) (Death)
- Dr. Sax (Jack Dulouz) (Main story and flashback) (Joins and Leaves Team)
- Constrictor (Frank Schlichting)
- Ringer (Keith Kraft)
- Komodo (Melati Kusuma)
- Batwing (James Santini)
- Butterball (Emery Schaub)
- Firearms (Death)
- Badd Axe
- Bengal (Duc No Tranh)
- Slaughter Boy (Death)
- Heavy Mettle
- Typhoid Mary (Mentioned)
- Shadow Initiative
- Tigra (Behind the scenes)
- Hardball (Roger Brokeridge) (Main story and flashback) (Joins and Leaves Blaastar Army)
- Dragon Man (Leaves Blaastar Army)
- Negative Zone Hordes
- Dazzler (Alison Blaire) (Only in flashback)
- Johnny Guitar's wife (Only in flashback)
- Johnny Guitar's daughter (Only in flashback)
- Dr. Sax's wife
- Dr. Sax's children
- Johnny Guitar and Jack Dulouz's band (Only in flashback)
- Techmaster (William Bitzer) (Only in flashback)
- Sinister Six (Only in flashback)
- Brotherhood of Evil Mutants (Only in flashback)
- Death-Throws (Only in flashback)
- Circus of Crime (Only in flashback)
- Trapster (Pete Petruski) (Only in flashback)
- Phineas Mason (Mentioned)
- Mrs. Tranh (Mentioned)
- Minh Tranh (Mentioned)
- High School (Only in flashback)
- New Mexico
- Negative Zone
Synopsis for "Even the Losers/The Taking of 42"
Johnny Guitar reminisces about his life, from when he and Dr. Sax were defeated by Dazzler to the band life to when Osborn recruited him for the Initiative. In the present, Johnny overhears Taskmaster and Constrictor talking about how the Shadow Initiative, which he is part of, will be cannon fodder in retaking Prison 42 from Blastaar. This news leaves him seriously concerned. As soon as they step in, what seemed like a quick mission turned into a bloodbath. The Shadow Initiative uses Butterball as a diversion to distract the N-Zone forces. Assisted by Dragon Lord and Hardball, the Shadow Initiative manages to retake the prison.
Back at Camp H.A.M.M.E.R., one of the Brothers Grimm is found, seriously beaten. On his chest, is a note from Tigra, warning all the villains that they're next.
Blastaar's alien army has seized 42, the Initiative's prison in the Negative Zone. Someone has to take it back, and the Taskmaster has assembled a team to do just that. But when Komodo looks around her at the squad of Z-list super-villains she's supposed to go into battle with, she wonders if this is a recovery job...or a suicide mission! And when she encounters familiar faces who had been incarcerated within the prison, will they be friend or foe? Also, because you demanded it--the return of Butterball!
- Split into two chapters:
- "Even the Losers" is a song originally performed by Tom Petty.
- The quote attributed to Bruce Springsteen is from his song The River.
- This issue is reprinted in other cmics and books, see references for more info.
- Most of the characters announced in the resume doesn't appears in the story as well as the New Warriors appearing on the cover.