> Avengers Masterworks Volume 1

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From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"See how quickly he conceives a battle plan...how smoothly he goes into action! It was a lucky day when we added Captain America to the roster of the Avengers!”

-- off-panel Avenger, about Cap, page 12

Though Cap is an elite-level acrobat, close-hand fighter, shield-slinger and super-soldier, he has never really grasped proper arm-wrestling technique! (Oh, and may the best man win!)

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Avengers #6
July 1964 • 23 pages

Script: Stan Lee • Letters: Sam Rosen
Pencils: Jack Kirby • Inks: Chic Stone

Lineup: Captain America • Giant-Man • Iron Man • Thor • Wasp
Title: “The Mighty Avengers Meet the Masters of Evil”

First Appearance: Baron Zemo, Zemo's pilot

Villains: Masters of Evil: Baron Zemo, Black Knight, Melter, Radioactive Man; Zemo's pilot

Guest Appearance: Rick Jones, Teen Brigade, Tom

Cameo: Paste Pot Pete

Gadgets & Technology: Cap's magnetic shield; Adhesive X; Melter's power increase; Zemo's heli-hovercraft; transistor-powered ejector; hypno-ray; Iron Man's hypnotic,whirling palm-signaller

Letters Page: Page One

Synopsis: The Avengers help Captain America test out his new and improvedshield, which Iron Man has added magnetic transistors to for easier recall after throwing. He also filled it out with high-tech gadgets that will help Cap communicate with his teammates. Rick Jones offers up his services as his sidekick, and Thor and the Wasptry to cheer him up because he is very forlorn still about losing Bucky. Cap speaks up that most on his mind isrevenge against the person responsible for Bucky's death.

In the South American jungle, a pilot flies on his yearly supply run to Baron Zemo, a hooded man of mystery who rules his jungle kingdom as if he was an autocratic king. Zemo's main concern is to read the most current medical journalsfor word on how to remove Adhesive X, the sticky substance that has sealed his hood permanently on the skin of his face. With nonew information on that front, he reviews the headlines of the newspapers and sees that Captain America is back in action. He flies intoa rage recalling the time during World War II, when he was Hitler's greatest scientist, when he fought Captain America who's shieldshattered the vat full of Adhesive X, spilling it all over him. He thought he had gotten revenge for this indignity by killing bothCaptain America and his partner Bucky, but now he realizes he has more work to do. He sends the pilot on a missionto contact three people he needs to assist him.

A short time later in New York, Bucky puts the call out to the Avengers through his Teen Brigade to respond to an emergency.The Black Knight is flying on his horse through the city, spreading a "mysterious adhesive spray." All along his path, whether over thecity streets or down the river, the adhesive spray sticks on everything it touches. In another part of town, a villain calledThe Melter performing a similar task, spreading Adhesive X all over the streets. And at the same time, the Radioactive Man is busy doing the same thing, hoping to lure Avengers into a trap.

Naturally, the Avengers are quick to assemble to face off against the enemy threat. They first arrive to face the Radioactive Man, who uses hisAdhesive X gun to fire at Thor, and to gum up the feet of Cap and Giant-Man. Adding to the threat, the Melter arrives on the scene to pesterIron Man, who is trying to aid his comrades. Iron Man uses his repulsor rays to knock the Melter aside, then cuts away the sectionof pavement that Cap and Giant-Man are stuck on. He connects this to a tow truck and drives them away, the effect being thatthe two Avengers stuck to the ground are effectively "surfing" the streets, in tow behind the truck!

The Black Knight arrives on the scene to menace the tow truck, and Thor removes himself from battle against Radioactive Man and the Melterto face off against the winged-horse riding warrior. Thor overcomes the Black Knight's bola attack, and the Avengers race off to TonyStark's mansion to find a way to loose Giant-Man and Cap from the sticky substance. Zemo flies down in his helicopter to pick up his fellow Masters of Evil, where he announces a change of plan. Knowing that the Avengers are likely to discover a solution to Adhesive X, he decides to try and steal it from them!

Back at Avengers HQ, the team is having a beast of a time trying to remove Cap and Giant-Man from their trap. The Wasp has an idea- call in Paste PotPete, who is the "world's greatest authority on pastes and adhesives!" In exchange for less jail time, where he is incarcerated after his last battlewith the Human Torch (* see Strange Tales #100,) he agres to help. He offers up a drum of his paste solvent, which will dissolve any adhesive. Iron Man goesto his warehouse and reclaims the vat of Pete's solvent, and sure enough it frees Giant-Man and Captain America from their sticky bondage! Once free, CaptainAmerica puts together a battle plan. They are going to throw their enemies a curve, by exchanging foes! Cap puts in a call to the Teen Brigade to help get thestrategy rolling.

As Zemo's pilot fills up his vats with Adhesive X so the Masters of Evil can give New York another round, the Teen Brigade comes on the scene and mugsthe pilot. Then they exchange the cylinders of Adhesive X with Paste Pot Pete's dissolver. Later, the Masters of Evil spread out to reign overthe city in terror again, but little do they know they are undoing all the damage they had done previously! Further, they are to be met by Avengers foes theydo not expect! Thor meets up with the Black Knight, he catches him off guard; as well Giant-Man and Iron Man square off against Radioactive Man and the Melter, taking little time to defeat their unbalanced foes.

Back at Zemo's helicopter, the masked villain has discovered the Teen Brigade, and uses his hypno-ray to stop them. Before he can continue any further, Cap's shield knocks the cannister of dissolving solvent from his hands (now the Paste Pot Pete substitute dissolver,) and the fight is on!Both legendary foes square off at last. Baron Zemo is a fierce combatant, but still no match for Cap's acrobatic skills and patriotic zeal. But treachery from behind his back is his undoing, as Zemo's pilot grazes Cap's skull with a bullet, knocking him out. Zemo and his pilot escape into the helicopter with the dissolvingsolvent. But before the pilot can get inside, Giant-Man and the Wasp snatch him away. Thor returns to the scenewith the defeated Black Knight in his grasp, and Iron Man pulls the Teen Brigade out of their hypnotic state.

As Zemo flies away in his ship, Cap tells his teammates that he hasn't made away with Pete's dissolver. Instead, it was a cannister of tear gas that Rick substituted in stealth! Sure enough, Zemo's escaping craft is seen crash landing in the distance!

-- synopsis by Gormuu

-- panel images by Avengers Assemble

Issues Reprinted
Avengers #1-10

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.

AVG #1 AVG #2 AVG #3 AVG #4 AVG #5
AVG #6 AVG #7 AVG #8 AVG #9 AVG #10


All cover images are courtesy of the Silver Age Marvel Comics Cover Gallery.

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