Who Are the Avengers of 1,000,000 BC?
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Every week, we use the powers of Marvel Unlimited to celebrate a major character's first appearance in the hallowed halls of the House of Ideas.
Everyone remembers how the Avengers first formed: Odin, the Phoenix, Black Panther, Iron Fist, Ghost Rider, Agamotto, and Starbrand joined forces to stop threats to the young planet. Wait a minute...is that right?
Of course it is! Well, from a certain point of view. Readers of MARVEL LEGACY #1 and the ongoing AVENGERS series have been introduced to the thrilling adventures of a group dubbed the Avengers of 1,000,000 BC. Most recently explored in this week's AVENGERS #13, the ancient super squad has quickly built a rich mythology of their own.
Before we get to the group itself, we've got to go back four billion years or so, when a Celestial called the Progenitor landed on Earth. There, it succumbed to an infection by space bugs called the Horde. As the Celestial bled out, it forever changed the raw composition of the planet, setting the stage for the fantastic individuals who have populated it since.
One billion years ago, another Celestial called Zgreb the Aspirant came to Earth in search of the Progenitor and the Horde. As the Celestial dealt with the infestation and the sadness of the Progenitor's death, Odin's team attacked and killed the creature, burying the corpse underneath the North Pole.
When the First Host of Celestials appeared, the proto-Avengers thought they sought revenge and fought to what they assumed would be their last breaths... And then the Host simply left the planet. They may have departed so they could see the results of this unplanned experiment or because they feared catching the Horde themselves. Either way, Zgreb didn't actually die, but lied dormant until Loki woke him up and used him to kill all of the other Celestials except for the Final Host.
In the present day, a new group of Avengers came together to oppose Loki and his Dark Celestials who intended to wipe the poisoned planet from existence. While they figured out how to stop both the Horde and the sick Celestials, they also learned about the older team and the origins of their planet.
Let's dig into who exactly this group is! The team is composed of several super powered individuals. First: Odin, he of one eye and great love of drink, also known as the Lord of Asgard and father of Thor. He led the group, wielding Mjolnir and developing as much of a passion for Midgard as he did for that era's possessor of the Phoenix Force. Even though he figured the battle with the Celestials would prove fatal, he still pledged to fight to a noble end.
As the current Avengers face the Final Host, Odin recounted his adventures to Thor and She-Hulk before pointing them towards a potentially Earth-shattering weapon, though he still thought they'd fall in battle. Upon witnessing their success, he spoke to a statue of Phoenix and his partners, saying, "They redeemed the very first of our sins. Let us hope they never learn of the rest."
Speaking of which, the redheaded host for the cosmic entity seems to share similar feelings for the god king. We don't know much about her, but she does wear the garb of an early human. She also exhibited the power of telepathy when she and Odin recruited Ghost Rider to join their group.
The mammoth-riding Spirit of Vengeance got the spotlight in AVENGERS #7, written by Jason Aaron and drawn by Sara Pichelli. In that issue, we met an incredibly intelligent cave boy whose clan fell to the Wendigo. After dubbing him Ghost, Wendigo left him alive, offering him the chance to eventually find him and exact his revenge. Ghost tried braving the cold snow beyond his cave, but soon fell. While on the brink of death, Mephisto appeared to him as a snake and offered him a new kind of life dedicated to vengeance. Ghost caught fire and rode a mammoth to defeat Wendigo which led to his recruitment by Phoenix and Odin.
Agamotto, the Sorcerer Supreme, seemed more concerned that the very thing his team felt so including to save–life on Earth–might eventually be worse than the First Host. Marvel mystics will, of course, recognize Agamotto as not only Doctor Strange's predecessor as Sorcerer Supreme, but also the original possessor of the Eye that Strange wears around his neck.
At one point described as a caveman with the power of the stars, the Hulk-like Starbrand appears to be a human possessed a celestial object.
A far more familiar face, known as Black Panther, has also served on the team. Admired by Odin for his discovery and early exploration of Vibranium, the as-yet-unnamed leader of Wakanda acted as both a warrior and a peacemaker in this group of major powers and egos.
In this week's AVENGERS #13, readers got a more in-depth look at the very first Iron Fist, but you'll have to read the issue to get the full story there! And then keep coming back every week to see the wild adventures Aaron and company are set to send both teams on!
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