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Quote1 The world needs the Avengers. The best of the best. The best and the brightest. Symbols. Icons. It's a time of healing. It's a time to tell people we're looking out for them. Quote2
Iron Man[src]



In the wake of the Superhero Civil War led by Captain America and Iron Man and the enforcement of the Superhuman Registration Act, the 50-State Initiative was implemented and each American state was patrolled by a team of registered heroes.[4] The Avengers were reformed to serve the main superhero unit on Earth, operating in the state of New York. The Iron Man, who became the new Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. after the Civil War, selected the members of the group. Although Iron Man was active on the team, his obligations led him to appoint longtime Avenger Ms. Marvel to act as field commander. Unlike previous rosters of the Avengers which were assembled by chance, Iron Man and Ms. Marvel picked the line-up from the registered heroes at their disposal. They chose the wealthy fashion icon Wasp, the optimistic Hollywoodian star Wonder Man, the troubled powerhouse Sentry, the lethal spy Black Widow, and the Olympian God of War Ares to compose the roster.[1]

Before any formalization, the new group was forced to debut as the Mole Man and its monstrous creatures unleashed chaos in New York City. In fact, Mole Man was a victim of another aggressor,[1] the long-time robotic nemesis of the Avengers Ultron, who infected and possessed Iron Man's armor and body, reshaping them to resemble the Wasp's organism. Having seized control of Starktech, Ultron had complete control over Earth's weather patterns, igniting a climate collapse around the globe to eradicate humanity.[5] The Avengers battled him as he also corrupted S.H.I.E.L.D.'s systems.[6] The climate crisis was stopped as the Avengers destroyed Stark's satellites. In retaliation, Ultron caused a massive blackout in America, took control of Iron Man's arsenal and murdered the Sentry's wife Lindy Reynolds.[7] Ultron's creator Hank Pym envisioned a solution by having the villain's organism infiltrated by a microscopic Ares, whom Ultron had knowledge about.[8] Completely out of control, the volatile Sentry brutally maimed Ultron, which endangered his host Tony Stark's life. Empowered by a missile Ultron had fired, Ms. Marvel was able to prevent the Sentry of assassinating Ultron and, consequently, Iron Man. Ares was successful in his mission and survived thanks to the Wasp. Ultron was purged from Tony Stark's body, making a recovery possible.[9]

While some Avengers joined the Initiative, many others rebelled against the Registration Act even after the loss and death of Captain America after the Civil War.[4][10] The outlaw Avengers maintained their operations, hiding from S.H.I.E.L.D. in Doctor Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum.[11] When identifying the fugitive Spider-Woman fighting the Grey Gargoyle in an illegal act of vigilantism, Ms. Marvel approached her and insinuated Captain America was, in fact, alive and being kept sedated in the maximum-security prison known as Raft.[12] Spider-Woman fled and informed the outlaw Avengers about it. They decided to raid the Raft to rescue Captain America only to be ambushed by the Initiative's Avengers, who staged the situation to trick them.[13] Doctor Strange haunted the Avengers with illusions about their deepest nightmares to cover a retreat. However, Iron Man and his Avengers tracked them to the Sanctum Sanctorum, though Doctor Strange's mystic defenses proved to be impenetrable.[14] Around this period of grief, the Avengers of the Initiative vented their anger about Captain America's demise on focusing on their duty, such as defeating Tiger Shark and a host of summoned sea-beasts.[15]

They were forced to join with this same team, along with the Fantastic Four, to stave off the Hulk and his allies, to varying degrees of success. Also, the hero they believed to be Spider-Woman, already a woman of several loyalties (a mole within both SHIELD and HYDRA for the fugitive Nick Fury, in addition to Avengers duties), left the New Avengers to join the Mighty Avengers.[16]

Next, the New York Initiative was confronted by an invasion of the Symbiotes, the same alien race that had spawned Venom and Carnage. These alien creatures rapidly began attaching themselves to people throughout Manhattan, including Wasp, Black Widow, and Spider-Woman. After Iron Man developed an antivirus, he traced the attack's origin not to outer space, but to Latveria. The Mighty Avenger travelled to Latveria and apprehended its monarch, Doctor Doom.[17]

Skrull Invasion[]

After it was discovered that a Skrull had posed as Elektra, Tony Stark recognized this as a sign of some kind of Secret Invasion. Although all Skrulls had shapeshifting powers, this one had proven especially difficult to detect. Stark called in Dr. Reed Richards and Dr. Hank Pym. As Richards and Pym were examining the corpse, Pym revealed that he too was a Skrull, firing a weapon at Reed that reduced his elastic body into a puddle of goo.

Meanwhile, a Skrull ship crash-landed in the Savage Land. Both teams of Avengers responded. The ship opened, however, revealing a contingent of 15 individuals dressed in old-style costumes of existing superheroes claiming to be the genuine articles, and to have just escaped Skrull imprisonment. Spider-Woman was discovered to have been none other than Veranke, Queen of the Skrulls. Not only the Avengers were affected, but the Initiative, SHIELD, and more.

During the climactic battle with the Skrulls, the Mighty Avengers fought alongside a slew of comrades. The Skrull posing as Hank Pym had offered the Wasp a dose of the serum which Pym had used to grow to immense heights as Giant-Man and Goliath. As it turned out, however, this was a trap: the serum turned her into a living bomb. As the Wasp was about to explode, killing everyone nearby, her longtime comrade Thor was forced to kill her to save everyone around her. At the same time, he promised to avenge her. During the fighting, Norman Osborn killed Queen Veranke. [18]

After the battle, the blame for the Secret Invasion was placed mainly on the shoulders of Tony Stark. SHIELD was disbanded, and was replaced with the new Thunderbolts Initiative headed by Norman Osborn, formerly the Green Goblin. Everyone replaced by the Skrulls was found to be alive and well. With the Wasp dead and Tony fallen from grace, the original lineup of the Mighty Avengers disbanded. The Sentry and Ares joined Osborn's Avengers. Ms. Marvel, refusing to work for Osborn, joined the New Avengers.[19] Concurrently, Loki, masquerading as the Scarlet Witch, manipulated Hank Pym into creating a new team of Avengers.[20]




  • An interview with series writer Brian Michael Bendis on the Word Balloon Podcast said that the roster revealed in Wizard was not entirely accurate. Bendis stated that some of the members shown on the promo image would be on the team, while others wouldn't. Because of this, fans speculated on the roster, but the one as shown was used in the first issue, and on throughout the next 19.

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