One of the most inscrutable, pervasive and enduring secret societies on Earth, the Atlas Foundation traditionally pursued world domination but currently uses its covert power and influence for humanity's greater good.
Steeped in advanced science and ancient sorcery, the society regards itself as a perpetuation of the ancient Mongol Empire, with each leader a descendant of and rightful successor to Genghis Khan. As he grows old, each Khan seeks a successor. For most of the 19th Century, the Atlas Foundation society was led by Plan Tzu, a.k.a. Master Plan. Plan had long since selected his potential successor, Jimmy Woo, despite the attempts of Jimmy's parents to spare him this legacy and their flight to America. Jimmy Woo became one of the top West Coast FBI agents, but Plan Tzu made himself into Woo's greatest enemy, the Yellow Claw, so as to help Jimmy advance his career and hone his skills. Indeed, nearly all of Jimmy's adventurers and allies were in some way all part of the Atlas Foundation's machinations.
One such adventure was prompted by the Yellow Claw's kidnapping of President Elsenhower in 1958. Authorized to assemble a special rescue team, Woo reviewed his files on active super-beings and instinctively selected a roster that came to him in a dream: Gorilla Man, Venus, Marvel Boy and aquatic heroine Namora. Namora declined to join the mission but found a replacement by helping Woo salvage the lost Human Robot. Meshing smoothly as a team, Woo's "G-Men" rescued Elsenhower and accomplished various other missions, repeatedly clashing with Atlas Foundation agents and pawns such as the mutated canine cosmonaut Laika; however, U.S. authorities ultimately decided the world was not ready for such bizarre heroes and disbanded the group, declaring their missions classified.
In recent years, now an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., Jimmy longed for the action in his youth. He renewed his investigations of the Atlas Foundation alongside a team of rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, but his team was killed and Woo himself nearly slain while invading the Temple of Atlas. Woo was eventually rescued and revived by his former allies of the G-Men, who agreed to help Woo uncover the truth of the Foundation. Joined by S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Derek Khanata, the heroes subsequently exposed and shut down many subversive Atlas operations operating under various legitimate business fronts, finally invading the Temple of Atlas itself. The heroes confronted Master Plan and his royal advisor, Mr. Lao, who revealed Woo's true heritage and the Atlas Foundation's plans for him. Seeing a chance to use the Atlas Foundation's immense resources for good, Woo accepted his new post as Khan of the Eternal Empire and CEO of the Atlas Foundation with the blessing of Plan, whom Lao promptly consumed. Allowing the world to believe them slain by the Claw, Jimmy Woo's heroic team has remained together as the core Agents of Atlas, the foundation's primary covert super-operatives. Derek Khanata has concealed their continued existence from his S.H.I.E.L.D. superiors.
* NOTE: In Reality-9904, Hale, M-11, Grayson and Venus teamed with 3-D Man to form the 1950s Avengers under Woo's guidance and with Namora's assistance, but that reality was wiped from existence by Immortus.