THE AVENGERS #126 (1974)

The first five pages of this issue are devoted to the complicated relationship issues at the mansion: Swordsman is with Mantis, but while kissing him she is thinking of Vision, who is also thinking of Mantis, but who is being watched by Scarlet Witch, who decides to get sexy to steal her man(droid).  By the end of the issue, Wanda just gets mad and insists that Vision make a choice between her and Mantis, and he responds in a very macho manner by telling her to pull herself together.

He says he doesn’t know how to be human, but that’s pretty typical, I’d say, of many men.

There’s also a fight involving Solaar and Klaw.

But like the best Marvel books, it’s much less interesting than the personal issues.  I note that the Avengers do fight a bunch of animals, but I’m not adding my tag about superheroes punching animals because the animals are actually sound creations from Klaw, and are not real.

Cap’s cynicism from his own title starts to show up in The Avengers…Soon, he would become Nomad: Man Without a Country–an idea also created by Steve Englehart, who was writing both titles.  Later Englehart would even create West Coast Avengers.  Truly, he was the Brian Michael Bendis of his time.  And yet, he seems to be entirely forgotten these days.

In the last panel, Captain America thinks to himself (after Black Panther announces out loud) that he will leave the team.  When Panther quits, he won’t be back until issue #150.  From here,T’Challa goes back to Africa to appear monthly in Jungle Action.  It’s kinda quaint how Marvel was concerned that having Panther appear in two books at the same time wouldn’t make sense.  I mean, Wolverine and Deadpool and Spider-Man are known to appear in over ten books at the same time, and nobody bats an eye.

Cap will be gone until #141.  Extended absences for both, but especially for Captain America who has pretty much been a mainstay for the life of the book.

Creators: Steve Englehart and Dave Cockrum.  Yeah, that’s Dave, looking agape as The Avengers fight Klaw.
Grade: B-

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