The Avengers franchise continues to flourish with the success of Captain America: Civil War. Spider-Man and Black Panther's roles have been been met with praise, and some we were treated to a great fight scene between two Avengers teams. Watching the team fight (CAPTAIN AMERICA SPOILER! Move to the next section to avoid the spoiler) and eventually break up, it got me thinking about the Avengers lineups after they disassembled. Which teams were the best and why?
5. New Avengers
Captain America (Steve Rogers) Iron Man, Spider-Man, Spider-Woman (Jessica Drew...kind of), Wolverine, Luke Cage, The Sentry
It was the worst day in Avengers history. Their teammate Wanda Maximoff (Scarlet Witch) killed teammates, critically injured others, and left others with ruined reputations. After that, The Avengers called it quits. A short time later fate (As Tony Stark called it) brought this motley crew of superheroes together and the New Avengers were born.
For me, this was a throwback to Cap's first team that had Wanda and Quicksilver (former terrorists) and Hawkeye (former criminal) — a group of heroes that weren't accepted by the public, but have been saving the world, or their part of the city, for decades.
Series to check out: New Avengers: Breakout
See how this team was put together and how characters like Luke Cage go from just a street hero to world protector. Also, see the series that got the ball rolling on stories that affected the Marvel universe for the next eight years.
4. Secret Avenger
Steve Rogers, Sharon Carter, Beast, Moon Knight, War Machine, Ant-Man (Eric O'Grady), Black Widow, Valkyrie
Steve Rogers was back from the dead and no longer felt he could be Captain America. But after seeing the horrible things this world was capable of, he knew Bucky was the Captain America this world needed. Rogers also realized that there were things in this world that required something that the public teams couldn't. Rogers needed a covert team.
It was cool seeing Steve Rogers putting together another random group of heroes, especially using Eric O'Grady and Moon Knight. Both are guys who were in need of redemption from their peers and this was the perfect place for them to get it. This was the first time I've seen Cap thinking outside of the box a bit. Finally realizing that maybe sometimes the world isn't so nice and that maybe he had been too critical of some of his peers.
Series to check out: Secret Avengers: Eyes of the Dragon
See what this team is really made of. They fight, they win, they lose, and then they pick themselves back up and get right back on the saddle. You get to see exactly why every member of this team was selected for this covert team.
3. The Mighty Avengers
Iron Man, Ms. Marvel, Ares, Wonder Woman, Sentry, Black Widow, Wasp
The Civil War is over and now it was time for Tony Stark and Carol Danvers to put an Avengers team together. For the first time ever, an Avengers team was hand-picked and not put together by fate. Who would be the team that defended the world against the worst threats to the world?
This team was short lived, but very fun. Iron Man was adjusting to being head of S.H.I.E.L.D., Carol Danvers was leading a team of Avengers while being micromanaged by Tony stark, Ares hates everyone, and Sentry is trying not to be crazy (trying and failing). They come off as cartoon-like at times, but they remain a strong team. Even the Wasp was useful.
Series to check out: Mighty Avengers: Ultron Initiative
What starts off as a fight against Mole Man and his Moloids, turns into an all-out brawl against Ultron with a makeover. To top it off, Iron Man is turned into a woman.
2. Dark Avengers
Iron Patriot (Norman Osborn), Hawkeye (Bullseye), Wolverine (Daken), Ms. Marvel (Moonstone), Ares, Spider-Man (Venom; Mac Gargan), Sentry
Tony Stark completely failed to see the Skrull invasion coming and Norman Osborn got the kill shot on the Skrull Queen live on TV and now Norman was the savior of mankind. Because of these events, Osborn was put in charge of the world's safety. That's right, Norman "The Green Goblin" Osborn was in charge. With that came the run of the Avengers franchise. What does he do? He recruits his villain Thunderbolts squad: Ares, Sentry, and Marvel Boy Wolverine's son Daken.
There haven't been many teams as ruthless as Norman's Dark Avengers. They are certified killers and most of them are lunatics. But that's a good thing. They are amazing at what they do. In a world where villains are crazier and more aggressive, a squad like this might have worked. To bad their leader is man who dresses up like a goblin.
Series to check out: Utopia
This is a good representation because you get to see what it actually takes to beat each member of Norman's Avengers. Some of them needed at least three to four super powered people to take one of them down.
1. Luke's New Avengers
Members: Luke Cage, Wolverine, Ms. Marvel, Iron Fist, Daredevil, The Thing (part time), Dr. Strange, Spider-Man, Jessica Jones, Mockingbird
Norman Osborn's "Dark Reign" was over and the heroes won. The Superhuman Registration Act had been overturned, and Luke and his team were free to be heroes. To make it official, Tony Stark moves Luke's team into Avengers Mansion and Steve Rogers tells Luke to put together his own squad and be an Avenger the way Luke deems fit — but he can't have Iron Man or Thor.
What makes a successful team in any setting is the ability to be able to have a someone on your team that can handle any situation. Luke's team had just that. All of them were experienced heroes. They had Dr. Strange for magic, Luke, Ms. Marvel, Jessica Jones, and The Thing for strength, Wolverine, Iron Fist, Mockingbird, and Daredevil for fighting skill, and Spider-Man for his genius and knowledge of villains. It might have been the perfect Avengers squad.
Series to check out: New Avengers Volume 2
Every issue in this arc was near flawless. It's funny, each artist in this series was amazing, and it even gets into the stuff behind being a hero — like what Luke and Jessica do with their baby, for example. All in all, this was my favorite Avengers lineup and series.