Unearthed: Avengers #4

Oi oi it’s ya boi! GUH I regret that. Anyway, welcome once again to the Stage of History! Today we’re looking at Avengers, Issue 4, in which Namor returns and a major comics figure makes his Avengerial debut!

Captain America rises from the supposed dead, full of 50s-era do-goodery and wisdom… and yearning for teenage boys! But we’ll get to that. First: the ads:

Why is “tough” in quotes? Are they mocking me? You wanna go, ad? Huh? YOU WANNA GO?

This kind of self-promotion reveals more than you want to, I think, Marvel.

Quick recap: Namor’s pissed because the Avengers beat him so handily, oh, and his entire underwater civilization is missing for some reason. So the first superhero frozen in ice being worshipped by Eskimos he comes across, he just chucks across the tundra, using a really awkward pose. I mean, you can relate, right?

Who hasn’t been there?

Anyway, turns out it’s Captain America in that Namor-thrown block of ice, in suspended animation since World War 2, ssshhh, don’t worry about it, and he’s just woken up without his teenaged pal Bucky, who he put into life-threatening situations on a daily basis because the lad was plucky or something.

Okay, you’re up to speed! Let’s go now to… ACTION! GO GO GO!

Dammit, Steve.

Also, I never like to criticize the Great Man, but Kirby really pulled off a crazy shortcut here. You may not have immediately noticed it, but look at Cap’n ‘Mer’ca’s arms here. There’s virtually nothing between his shoulders and elbows. That’s insane. But Kirby got away with it.

So, several things here: 1) Iron Man’s threatening a guy they just pulled out of the sea who was near death. 2) “Try to conquer me!” is something I say at the bank all the time. 3) The Avengers aren’t sure this guy is who he’s saying he is. He might just be a regular guy. So the first thing Thor does is throws his hammer at him, ensuring a quick, pulpy death for any regular guy. Nice.

Cap reminisces about the time he saw a really big fish.

Yes, Pete. That is an appropriate reaction to seeing a bright flash of light that turns your heroes into statues. Y’dingus.

This was the state of journalism in the late 60s. No questions, just jumping to conclusions and running away. Seems legit.

He’s not frickin’ King ARTHUR, dood.

Nah, then, Mawster Bruce, I actually thought this was a cool moment that cements Cap’s place in local legend.

Hold on to that sense of wonder, Cap. It’ll last maybe a week. And wait until the Internet hits!

“Hey, mister, why’re you covering your crotch with your shield? Why… why’re you lookin’ at me like that? Such… naked HUNGER!”

My paycheck made honor roll at Area High School!

Yeah yeah, we know Cap’s a top, whatever.

Suddenly, into our lives, a broccoli man. I need a sitcom, stat!

*pause* Well, F you too, Thor.

Oh, you think? Perhaps if you do the one thing you know how to do? Yeah? Maybe using your ONE TRICK might accomplish something? Y’DINGUS

Boys! Boys! We love you so much we’re saying your name twice! Girls! Girls! Die in several fires!

The secret is to wait four decades until the Internet comes along. Then you, too, can struggle to make money doing what you love, just like all the other indie musicians!

And there it is. Those of you who, like me, thought it was odd when Marvel called Namor the First Mutant some years ago, now have canonical proof. If canon even means anything.

Yes. Become small, thus lengthening the time it will take to get to the surface. Unless, of course, the volume of oxygen in your currently-overlarge lungs bursts your suddenly tiny lungs instead. And you call yourself a scientist? Why, you’d… wait. Who’re these people who just burst into my room? Wha — “Comic Book Science Strike Force”? The hell’s THAT? Hey! LET GO! I’ll call out stupid plot contrivances if I WANT to! Get this hood off me! Where you taking me? I won’t be silent! The public deserves to know!


Never thought of Cap as some kinda window-watching perv, didja? Sometimes history brings things to light we wish remained hidden.

You guys were in the Invaders together. You were teammates, you and Bucky and Toro and the Whizzer and… no? Nothing. Okay.

Tony, SHUT UP.

Shippers, your work is cut out for you.

Note the quotation marks. This is a front for money laundering. You know it, I know it, and the weird, simpering grin on this guy’s face proves it.

Anyway, that’s today’s Comics Breakdown! Tomorrow we’ll look at the Avengers #5, then we’re moving on to another classic comic of yesteryear. Haven’t decided which it’ll be yet, but the anticipation’s part of the fun, right? R-right?

oh my Grud, I’ve wasted my life