Started by Tony Stark as part of the Initiative to redistribute America's superhuman protection. The California division of the Initiative was first to be called the "Champions", reminiscent of the short-lived team based in Los Angeles. This was soon changed to "The Order". In addition to its duties, the team is being used as a social experiment: there are eleven members, each with powers based on Greek gods, but each set of powers is removable and repeatable. Thus, if a member breaks the team's rules, their powers can be removed and another person can take their place. After a year, each member will also be stripped of their powers and codenames and return to civilian life, at which point eleven new civilians will replace the former team.
Quote from Matt Fraction regarding The Order: "The Order is a modern superhero book, in terms of how it's been created and how it's managed, and, behind the scenes, in terms of how Barry and I are telling their stories. But below the surface, everything about the team-- how it's run, who's on it, and what they can do -- follows a classical tradition by being modeled after the Greek pantheon of Gods... the first Order, if you will, of heroes. Inside and out, The Order is organized around the same principals that held together those twelve legends. Tony Stark sits on top, playing the role of Zeus. His girl Friday and the on-site leader of The Order is Pepper Potts, playing the symbolic role of Hera. And on and on, down through the ranks. All of our characters have a mythical, symbolic role they fulfill, along with their quite-literal new superhuman identities.
"The Greek gods were really kind of the original superhero team-- and if (artist) Barry Kitson and I were going to be launching a superhero team of our own, it seemed like following the order of the oldest and the best wasn't such a bad idea!"
The Order was originally to be called The Champions
- 16 Order (Initiative) (Earth-616) Members
- 23 Appearances of Order (Initiative) (Earth-616)
- Minor Appearances of Order (Initiative) (Earth-616)
- 3 Media Order (Initiative) (Earth-616) was Mentioned in
- 3 Images that include Order (Initiative) (Earth-616)
- Team Gallery: Order (Initiative) (Earth-616)