AVENGERS #4 (1964): 1st Captain America

This is the one!

Y’all know the story: It starts with Namor attacking some Eskimos who are worshipping a man frozen in a block of ice.  Sub Mariner hurls the ice-body into the sea, where it starts to drift, and melt.  The Avengers find it, and we get one of the most iconic panels of all time.

Namor and his Atlantean army, who wear deep sea diver suit to survive on land, fight the team–and Cap gets some good solo action showing how he can stand on his own beside super-powered heroes.

Also, Thor drops his hammer and Namor is…

…Not worthy!

Then we get the backstory/retcon, where it turns out Bucky didn’t survive WWII and Cap has also been believed dead all this time.

This sequence has been redrawn and put into movies and cartoons, over and over, and often Cap and Bucky are in costume during it.

Interesting that in the original they’re not.

One last thing about this issue: Cap apparently really needs a young hanger-on, because he immediately bonds with Rick Jones–who is lamenting that Hulk seems to be a full-blown villain now.  I’m not a fan of Rick Jones, but he’s better than the JLA’s Snapper Carr.

Hulk’s not the only one who leaves this adventure alone…

Poor Subby.

STRANGE TALES #103 (1963)

But for the inclusion of Human Torch, this story could almost be a generic Strange Tale. Human Torch literally happens upon some invaders from “the 5th Dimension,” gets captured, taken…