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Quote1 How can Janet van Dyne fail to fall in love with the man who is now mightier than Goliath himself? Quote2
Living Laser

Appearing in "The Light That Failed!"

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Synopsis for "The Light That Failed!"

Goliath arrives to save Hawkeye and Captain America from the Living Laser's trap.

With the Wasp as his prisoner, the Living Laser flees to South America. In Costa Verde, he creates a powerful laser cannon and uses it to save the country from dictatorship, although he's really motivated by the expectation of fame and reward money.

The Avengers attack the Living Laser but they are defeated by his cannon and captured. Goliath escapes by willing himself to shrink, even though it is dangerous for him. He overcomes his size limit and sabotages the Laser's cannon, causing it to explode and defeating the Living Laser.

At the end of the issue, Captain America is alone in Avenger's Mansion when an unknown person reaches out to him. Cap is shocked to see... (Story continued into the next issue.)


  • Beginning with this issue, Roy Thomas begins a lengthy and significant run as the series writer. Although in this issue he mainly writes text and dialogue for a plot conceived by Stan Lee and Don Heck (mostly by Heck), he will take charge of writing plots for issues next issue and will be the chief writer for it until 1972. During his tenure, he will introduce such characters as the Grim Reaper, Ultron, the Vision as well as Hank Pym's Yellowjacket personae. He will also write such important stories as Pym's first major nervous breakdown and the marriage of Hank and Jan, the discovery of adamantium and the Kree-Skrull war. Perhaps most importantly, Thomas will introduce the concept that the Avengers' roster is in constant flux. Although the team had changed personnel already a few times before, Thomas will have characters join, quit, re-join and assume new superheroic identities at such a rapid pace, the team's roster will almost never be static for more than two consecutive issues.
  • Cover art: pencils and inks by Heck, Captain America figure (a stat from a Tales of Suspense story) by Kirby and Giacoia, colors by Goldberg.
  • Captain America, Hawkeye, Goliath, Wasp, Living Laser, and Bill Foster were all seen in the last issue.
  • Page 2: Hawkeye sarcastically calls Captain America "Mr. Fantastic." Mister Fantastic is the leader of the Fantastic Four, who, over everything else is one of the smartest individuals on Earth.
  • Page 2: Cap's shield is disintegrated by one of the Living Laser's Lasers. This would be considered a continuity error as in later stories it is revealed the Cap's shield was constructed out of pure Adamantium and is indestructible. This story predates that "revelation."
    • Captain America's Shield had been previously described as being made of "steel" in Avengers Vol 1 8.
    • In a later letters page, Marvel editors indicate that Captain America used a replica shield in his battle against the Living Laser. This replica shield was the one destroyed.
    • This editor would propose that Captain America, not being aware of the capabilities of the Living Laser's weapons and not having tremendous knowledge of advances made in lasers since 1945, chose to not have his long-treasured shield (given to him by President Franklin Roosevelt) risk destruction. He, therefore, used a replacement which was coated in Tony Stark's refractive coating.
  • Page 5: Wasp's recounting of her capture by the Living Laser happened last issue in Avengers Vol 1 34.
  • Page 7: The Wasp wonders how the Living Laser could love her even though she'd never seen him before, but he sure got a look at her in Avengers Vol 1 34.
  • Page 9: A reference to Tony Stark's innovations that the Avengers used, Tony Stark (AKA Iron Man) has been providing the Avengers with equipment and a base of operations since Avengers Vol 1 2.
  • Page 14: Living Laser's civilian identity and relationship to Lucy Barton were revealed last issue in Avengers Vol 1 34 (again.)
  • Page 17: Goliath is able to change his size for the first time since Avengers Vol 1 28, when he was "locked" at a height of 10 feet because the strain of changing his size would kill him if he attempted to shrink again.
  • Page 20: Lucy Barton was introduced last issue.
  • Page 20: We briefly see the Black Widow, we last saw her helping out the Avengers defeat the Sons of the Serpent in Avengers Vol 1 33, we'll see her again in Avengers 36 where she helps them battle the Ultroids.
  • Page 20: The person that Cap see's at the end of this issue is revealed to be the Scarlet Witch (or rather an impostor) in Avengers Vol 1 36.
  • Captain America, Hawkeye, Goliath, and Wasp are all seen in next issue, Avengers Vol 1 36.
  • The Living Laser is next seen in Avengers Annual Vol 1 1 where he is one of the many villains recruited by the Mandarin to get revenge on the Avengers.
  • Bill Foster isn't seen again until Avengers Vol 1 41, where he aids Goliath in examining Dragon Man.


  • Roy Thomas says that when Don Heck was doing the cover art, Stan Lee didn't like the appearance of Captain America, so he asked production manager Sol Brodsky to search for some old Jack Kirby photostats of Cap that looked good on the cover and put it on there.

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