Appearing in "Steel City Nightmare!"
- Vince Paretta (First appearance)
- Tim Turpin
- Stark International (Mentioned)
- Thor Odinson (Mentioned)
- Inferno (Joseph Conroy)
- Sid Bloat
- Hawkeye (Clint Barton) (Mentioned)
Races and Species:
- United States
- an Uru fragment from Mjolnir
- Captain America's Shield
- Iron Man Armor MK V
- Falcon's Wings
- Wasp's Suit and Wings
- Ms. Marvel's Suit
Synopsis for "Steel City Nightmare!"
Tony Stark has gone to Pittsburgh to investigate a steel plant he is considering buying. Since the plant was formerly owned by Simon Williams, he has invited Wonder Man to join him as his guest. Tony is curious as to why the mill owner, Vince Paretta, is so anxious to sell it, given that it is a prosperous business.
An accident almost occurs. One of the crucibles begins spilling, threatening several workers. Tony wants to sneak away and changed into his armor but Wonder Man has to hit a shut-down switch right away and grabs Tony’s briefcase to throw at it, unaware that it is where Tony keeps his armor. Fortunately, though, Wonder Man manages to shut down the plant before a catastrophe takes place.
In the aftermath, the plant workers talk about the excitement. One worker, Joe Conroy, reminisces that Thor once used the plant to patch up his damaged hammer, Mjolnir. The worker reveals that Thor left behind a small fragment of Uru metal, which the worker fashioned into a keychain.
But it becomes apparent that another worker, Tim Turpin, bears some sort of grudge against him. His co-worker utters a veiled threat to him.
Sometime later, Turpin knocks Conroy off a catwalk, into a crucible full of molten lead below. Turpin’s colleagues cover for him, claiming Joe lost his balance and fell in. He is assumed to be dead.
At Avengers Mansion, a visitor tries to gain access by using… a MasterCard?? The security coils truss him up. When he’s questioned, he says he was trying to get the Avengers to solve a noise complaint! Gyrich angrily dismisses the man, but admits he is satisfied with the mansion’s security protocols (finally) and departs.
Having been emancipated from Gyrich's total control, the Avengers (under Captain America’s leadership) try to bring back a few former members back to active duty. Hoping to mend fences, Falcon offers to call Hawkeye, but the archer’s phone has been disconnected. Jan calls up Hank, who claims to be enjoying the opportunity to do pure research and doesn’t want to be a full-time Avenger just now. Beast then suggests they bring back Wonder Man, which everyone agrees to. Meanwhile, Wanda says goodbye to the Vision and takes her leave for the time being.
Back in Pittsburgh, the steel mill makes a metal slab as a memorial of the fallen employee. But the memorial slab suddenly bursts open to reveal… Inferno! Wonder Man and Iron Man (now that Tony has retrieved his armor) try to take down the fiery behemoth, but it proves to be a strong adversary.
Back at the mansion, Jarvis and Ms. Marvel are on monitor duty and receive an alert signal from Wonder Man. While Ms. Marvel is informing Cap of the alert, she mentions that Wonder Man’s alert (which can only be deactivated either from the mansion of if it’s destroyed) has gone dead.
- Joe Conroy found the Uru fragment after Thor's visit to Pittsburgh in Journey Into Mystery #120. Upon his "death", the Uru reanimates and mutates Conroy into Inferno.
- MasterCard is not considered sufficient proof of identity to enter Avengers Mansion, apparently.
- Although Cap was only supposed to serve as an interim chairman while Iron-Man was preoccupied with personal matters, he remains the de facto team leader. In #197, Iron-Man will officially cede the position to Cap full-time.
- While Hawkeye's absence is explained by his new job at CTE, Hank begs off Avengers duty to concentrate on his research work. This is later contradicted during the "Trial of Hank Pym" storyline when Hank relates to a psychiatrist how humiliated he felt that Wasp was retained as an Avenger while he was expulsed.
- The Scarlet Witch takes a leave of absence beginning this issue.
- It's revealed here that Jarvis's butler duties can sometimes extend to monitor duty, except for just recently when Gyrich insisted an Avenger always be on duty.
- This issue contains an advert for Hostess Twinkies featuring Mister Fantastic Vs. Goldigger.
- In lieu of a letters column, this issue contains a brief essay on the history of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch and decision to retcon their parentage a second time, including a bibliography of back issues the writers used for research.