West Coast Avengers

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West Coast Avengers
Cover of West Coast Avengers vol. 2, #1 (October 1985). Art by Al Milgrom and Joe Sinnott.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceWest Coast Avengers #1 (September 1984)
Created byRoger Stern
Bob Hall
In-story information
Base(s)Avengers Compound, Los Angeles
Roster
See:List of West Coast Avengers members
 
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West Coast Avengers
Cover of West Coast Avengers vol. 2, #1 (October 1985). Art by Al Milgrom and Joe Sinnott.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceWest Coast Avengers #1 (September 1984)
Created byRoger Stern
Bob Hall
In-story information
Base(s)Avengers Compound, Los Angeles
Roster
See:List of West Coast Avengers members

The West Coast Avengers is a fictional group of superheroes that appear in publications published by Marvel Comics. The team first appear in The West Coast Avengers #1 (September 1984) and was created by Roger Stern and Bob Hall.

Publication history[edit]

The West Coast Avengers first appear in a four-issue limited series published from September to December 1984. The series was written by Roger Stern and drawn by Bob Hall and Brett Breeding. This was followed by a 102-issue series of the same name that ran from October 1985 to January 1994.[1] The series was written by Steve Engelhart and drawn by Al Milgrom and Joe Sinnott. From issue #42 to 57 the title was written and illustrated by John Byrne. The series was renamed Avengers West Coast on the cover of issue #47 (August 1989) and in the indicia in issue #48 (September 1989). Writers Roy and Dann Thomas and artist Paul Ryan became the new creative team with issue #60 and Dave Ross replaced Ryan with issue #71. The second series was accompanied by eight annuals published from 1986 to 1993.

Fictional team biography[edit]

The team is founded by the Avenger Hawkeye in response to a suggestion by android and fellow Avenger the Vision, who at the time wished to expand Avengers influence. Hawkeye recruits Mockingbird,[2] Wonder Man, Tigra, and Iron Man, with the last actually being Jim Rhodes as opposed to Tony Stark, a fact initially unknown to the team. Together the team defeat a petty criminal called the Blank[3] and later the Avengers foe Graviton.[4]

The team would later take on Henry Pym as a scientific advisor and compound manager[5] and battle a range of both old foes—including the Grim Reaper,[5][6] Ultron,[5][6][7] Graviton,[8] and Zodiac[9] and new opponents such as Master Pandemonium.[10] The Fantastic Four member the Thing[11] and the heroine Firebird[10] briefly ally themselves with the team. Henry Pym, who is saved by Firebird from a suicide attempt,[12][13] and the adventurer Moon Knight formally join,[14] while Iron Man is expelled for his actions during the Armor Wars.[15] The "Lost in Space-Time" storyline began in issue #17 (February 1987) when Dominus sent the team back in time.[12][16] The marriage of Hawkeye and Mockingbird is placed in jeopardy when, during this arc, she allows the Old West hero the Phantom Rider to die in a fall for deceiving and raping her.[17]

The Vision and the Scarlet Witch appear on the cover of the retitled Avengers West Coast #47 (August 1989). Art by John Byrne.

After a trip to Hungary to investigate a report on Pym's first wife, the Wasp, the Scarlet Witch, and the Vision assist the team. Mockingbird, Tigra and Moon Knight leave the team together as a new short lived team called the Ex-WACOs over the Avengers rule of not killing in regards to Mockingbird's encounter with Phantom Rider. The Vision and the Scarlet Witch join the team as to not leave it short handed.[18] Former Avenger ally Mantis makes a brief appearance. Agents from multiple governments then abduct the Vision and dismantle him due to his return to the team. The Avengers recover the parts and Dr. Pym rebuilds the Vision but with a chalk-white complexion. Wonder Man, however, does not allow his brain patterns to be used again to provide a matrix for the Vision's emotions, explaining that the original process, done without his consent, had "ripped out his soul". Although Wonder Man's own love for the Scarlet Witch leads him to feel guilt, he justifies his actions by claiming the Vision was never anything but a copy of him, a claim that a number of other Avengers, including the Wasp, accept. This, along with damage to the Vision's synthetic skin when he was dismantled, results in the synthezoid's resurrection as a colorless and emotionless artificial human.[19][20] The unstable U.S. Agent is assigned to the team as a watchdog by the US government to monitor the team's activities.

A group of odd super-humans decide to mimic the Avengers and become the Great Lakes Avengers,[21] while the original Human Torch returns from his own apparent demise. This casts doubt on the Vision's identity, who was previously believed to have been created from the Torch's body. The Vision and the Scarlet Witch's children conceived via the Scarlet Witch's hex powers[22][23] are then revealed to be fragments of the soul of the demon Mephisto, who had been broken apart by Franklin Richards shortly before the birth of the twins. The twins were absorbed back into Mephisto, which temporarily drives the Scarlet Witch insane.[24] Although she eventually recovers, the Scarlet Witch and the Vision separate, each operating on a different Avengers team.

Iron Man rejoins, and the mutant Quicksilver aids the team when the Scarlet Witch aids their father Magneto during a period in which she suffers from a mental breakdown. Immortus is finally confronted and revealed to be the cause of much of the team's misfortune, and is finally defeated. The Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver then leave the team, with Machine Man becoming a reservist and Spider-Woman and the Living Lightning joining as full-time members. Spider-Man guest-stars in issues #84-86.[25]

The team battle Ultron and his new creation Alkhema several times, and Hawkeye assumes his old identity of Goliath and reconciles with Mockingbird. Iron Man and Wonder Man leave the team, and are replaced by War Machine (Jim Rhodes, one of the founding West Coast Avengers) and Darkhawk, with the latter acting as a reservist. During a battle with the demons Mephisto and Satannish, Mockingbird is killed.[26] Due to constant in-fighting and a general lack of organization, Captain America intervenes and disbands the team. Several members of the West Coast team—including a returned Iron Man—are unhappy about the decision and leave to form another team, called Force Works.[27] This team, however, has several setbacks and quickly disbands, with the members returning to the main Avengers team.

Years later, the West Coast Avengers compound would be reopened as the new campus for the Avengers Academy following the destruction of the Infinite Avengers Mansion as seen in the Fear Itself storyline.[28]

Other versions[edit]

Ultimate Marvel[edit]

In the Ultimate Marvel reality, a secret team of Ultimates was formed in the Ultimate Comics: Ultimates.[29] The team members include Quake as the leader, Wonder Man, the Vision, the Black Knight and Tigra. The team was assigned to kill Osama Bin Laden until Wonder Man went unstable. This forced the abandonment of the mission and Nick Fury put the team into stasis until needed. Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. had planned to use them against the villainous Reed Richards and his Children of Tomorrow, but thanks to the civil war, California Governor Ford discovered the newly christened West Coast Ultimates and set them against the Ultimates.[30]

Collected editions[edit]

TitleMaterial CollectedPublication DateISBN
West Coast Avengers: AssembleCollects West Coast Avengers #1-4, Iron Man Annual #7, and The Avengers #250, plus material from The Avengers #239, #243-244, and #246, and Avengers West Coast #100.June 2010ISBN 978-0785143215
Avengers: West Coast Avengers: Family TiesCollects West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #1-9 and Vision and the Scarlet Witch vol. 2 #1-2.June 2011ISBN 978-0785155003
Avengers: West Coast Avengers: Sins of the PastCollects West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #10-16, West Coast Avengers Annual #1 and The Avengers Annual #15.December 2011ISBN 978-0785159001
Avengers: West Coast Avengers: Lost in Space-TimeCollects West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #17-24, Fantastic Four #19, and Doctor Strange vol. 2 #53April 2012ISBN 978-0785162216
Avengers: West Coast Avengers: Zodiac AttackCollects West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #25-30, West Coast Avengers Annual #2 and Avengers Annual #16July 2012ISBN 978-0785162537
Avengers West Coast Visionaries - John Byrne, Vol. 1: Vision QuestCollects West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #42-47 and Avengers West Coast #48-50.August 2005ISBN 978-0785117742
Avengers West Coast Visionaries - John Byrne, Vol. 2: Darker than ScarletCollects Avengers West Coast #51-57 and #60-62.January 2008ISBN 978-0785130277
Avengers West Coast: Along Came A Spider-WomanCollects Avengers West Coast #58-59 and #63-75.June 2012ISBN 978-0785162322
Avengers: Galactic Storm: Volume 1Collects Avengers West Coast #80-81, Captain America #398-399, Quasar #32-33, Wonder Man #7-8, The Avengers #345-346, Iron Man #278, and Thor #445.March 2006ISBN 978-0785120445
Avengers: Galactic Storm: Volume 2Collects Avengers West Coast #82, Iron Man #279, Thor #446, Captain America #400-401, Quasar #34-35, Wonder Man #9, The Avengers #347, and What If? #55-56.December 2006ISBN 978-0785120452
West Coast Avengers Omnibus Vol. 1Collects West Coast Avengers #1-4; Iron Man Annual #7; The Avengers #250; West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #1-16; Vision and the Scarlet Witch vol. 2 #1-2; The Avengers Annual #15; West Coast Avengers Annual #1; material from The Avengers #239, 243-244, 246; material from Avengers West Coast #100April 2013ISBN 978-0785167457
West Coast Avengers Omnibus Vol. 2Collects West Coast Avengers vol. 2 #17-41; West Coast Avengers Annual #2-3; Avengers Annual #16; Fantastic Four #19; and Doctor Strange vol. 2 #53November 2013ISBN 978-0785167471

In other media[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ West Coast Avengers and Avengers West Coast at the Grand Comics Database
  2. ^ DeFalco, Tom; Gilbert, Laura, ed. (2008). "1980s". Marvel Chronicle A Year by Year History. Dorling Kindersley. p. 219. ISBN 978-0756641238. "Hawkeye and his new wife, Mockingbird, were given the job of running the West Coast branch...The initial four-issue limited series proved so popular that it became a regular monthly book that ran for 102 issues." 
  3. ^ Stern, Roger (w), Hall, Bob (p), Breeding, Brett (i). "Blanking Out!" West Coast Avengers 2 (October 1984)
  4. ^ Stern, Roger (w), Hall, Bob (p), Breeding, Brett (i). "Taking Care of Business!" West Coast Avengers 3 (November 1984)
    Stern, Roger (w), Hall, Bob (p), Breeding, Brett (i). "Finale" West Coast Avengers 4 (December 1984)
  5. ^ a b c Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "Teammates!" West Coast Avengers v2, 1 (October 1985)
  6. ^ a b Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), DeMulder, Kim (i). "Sons!" West Coast Avengers v2, 2 (November 1985)
  7. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnot, Joe (i). "U, Robot!" West Coast Avengers v2, 7 (April 1986)
  8. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "The Attraction Between Two Bodies!" West Coast Avengers v2, 12 (September 1986)
    Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "The Unified Field Theory" West Coast Avengers v2, 13 (October 1986)
  9. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "What Is Scorpio" West Coast Avengers v2, 26 (November 1987)
    Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "Star Struck!" West Coast Avengers v2, 27 (December 1987)
    Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Hunt, David (i). "Double-Crossed!" West Coast Avengers v2, 28 (January 1988)
    Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "Dead Run!" West Coast Avengers v2, 29 (February 1988)
  10. ^ a b Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "Master Pandemonium!" West Coast Avengers v2, 4 (January 1986)
  11. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "Singleton!" West Coast Avengers v2, 3 (December 1985)
  12. ^ a b Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "Outta Time!" West Coast Avengers v2, 17 (February 1987)
  13. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnot, Joe (i). "Lost in Space-Time, Part Two Time Was..." West Coast Avengers v2, 18 (March 1987)
  14. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Sinnott, Joe (i). "Lost in Space-Time Part 5: A Time for Every Purpose Under Heaven!" West Coast Avengers v2, 21 (June 1987)
  15. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "The Friday Night Frights!" West Coast Avengers v2, 31 (April 1988)
  16. ^ DeFalco "1980s" in Gilbert (2008), p. 230: "This issue began a seven-part storyline called 'Lost in Space-Time' that sent the super heroes Hawkeye, Iron Man, Tigra, Wonder Man, and Mockingbird into the past."
  17. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Tanghal, Romeo (i). "Showtime! Lost in Space-Time: Conclusion!" West Coast Avengers v2, 23 (August 1987)
  18. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Milgrom, Al (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "Avengers Disassemble!" West Coast Avengers v2, 37 (October 1988)
  19. ^ DeFalco "1980s" in Gilbert (2008), p. 240: "Writer/artist John Byrne produced the story arc that came to be known as 'Vision Quest' that ran through The West Coast Avengers #42-45."
  20. ^ Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "One of Our Androids is Missing!" West Coast Avengers v2, 42 (March 1989)
    Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "VisionQuest" West Coast Avengers v2, 43 (April 1989)
    Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "Better a Widow..." West Coast Avengers v2, 44 (May 1989)
  21. ^ DeFalco "1980s" in Gilbert (2008), p. 241: "Writer/artist John Byrne took a tongue-in-cheek approach to superheroics"
  22. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Howell, Richard (p), Mooney, Jim (i). "Ancestors" The Vision and the Scarlet Witch v2, 3 (December 1985)
  23. ^ Englehart, Steve (w), Howell, Richard (p), Springer, Frank (i). "Double Sized Climax!" The Vision and the Scarlet Witch v2, 12 (September 1986)
  24. ^ Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "I Sing of Arms and Heroes..." Avengers West Coast 51 (Mid-November 1989)
    Byrne, John (w), Byrne, John (p), Machlan, Mike (i). "Fragments of a Greater Darkness" Avengers West Coast 52 (December 1989)
  25. ^ Cowsill, Alan; Gilbert, Laura, ed. (2012). "1990s". Spider-Man Chronicle Celebrating 50 Years of Web-Slinging. Dorling Kindersley. p. 198. ISBN 978-0756692360. "The three-part story pitted the West Coast Avengers and Spider-Man against Death Web, a team of mutated assassins." 
  26. ^ Manning, Matthew K. "1990s" in Gilbert (2008), p. 265: "In a story by writer Roy Thomas and artist David Ross...a stray fireball struck Hawkeye's wife, Mockingbird, killing her in Hawkeye's arms."
  27. ^ Manning "1990s" in Gilbert (2008), p. 269: "When the West Coast Avengers disbanded, some of its members. led by Iron Man, went on to form a new team, Force Works."
  28. ^ Gage, Christos (w), Raney, Tom (p), Hanna, Scott (i). "Endings" Avengers Academy 20 (December 2011)
  29. ^ Humphries, Sam (w), Bennett, Joe (p), Jose, Ruy (i). Ultimate Comics: The Ultimates 22 (May 2013)
  30. ^ Humphries, Sam (w), Bennett, Joe (p), Jose, Ruy (i). Ultimate Comics: The Ultimates 23 (June 2013)

External links[edit]