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Avengers #2: Review

Nov 1963
Stan Lee, Jack Kirby

Story Name:

The Space Phantom

Review & Comments

3 stars

Avengers #2 Review by (February 15, 2010)
Hulk's last appearance as a regular member of the Avengers. The Space Phantom does return (next appearance: Avengers 106) where Hulk isn't involved.

Avengers #2 Review by (August 10, 2011)
No sooner does Hulk join the Avengers in #1 than he quits in #2. 1999's #1½ provided at least 1 adventure in between. In the current issue the Avengers already know that Ant-Man has become Giant-Man. #1½ includes them being clued in on this. For all but Iron Man the Official Index has nothing between #1½ and this one. For Giant-Man and Wasp they immediately follow Tales to Astonish #49 where Ant-Man first became Giant-Man. And also where they started using pills rather than gas to shrink and grow. Iron Man has Tales of Suspense #45-47 in between. But more significantly this issue is followed by ToS#48 where Iron Man will don the first of his more familiar red and gold armours. Rick Jones tells the Hulk (actually the Space Phantom) to return to his secret lab to turn back to Bruce Banner (actually Stan Lee mistakenly has him say Donald Blake). This indicates they're still using the machine from Hulk #6 to effect Hulk's transformations. Retconning will establish that Space Phantom isn't a random alien invader. Avengers Forever #8 will tell us that he is a servant of Immortus, hypnotised to believe his own cover story, sent to destabilise the Avengers. Immortus will also use Space Phantoms in #10 to impersonate mythical (or historical in the Marvel Universe) figures like Hercules. And so on.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #2 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro
Hulk's antisocial personality causes friction within the new superhero team. Meanwhile an alien menace called the Space Phantom arrives on Earth determined to destroy the Avengers. His special power is that he can assume the form of any other being, sending that person to Limbo until he takes another form. The Space Phantom impersonates an innocent bystander to gain entrance to the Avengers Mansion. Confronted by the Hulk, the alien steals Hulk's form sending Jade Jaws to Limbo. He then picks a fight with Iron Man and leaves to let them quarrel among themselves. Rick Jones encounters the phony Hulk who reveals his true identity to boast of his cleverness then resumes the Hulk's form. The "Phantom" Hulk destroys Stark Industries' new weapon and Iron Man is summoned to deal with the enemy. Getting the worst of the battle, the Phantom flees as a wasp. Giant Man and Wasp break up the fight between Iron Man and the real Hulk, then the Phantom assumes Giant-Man's form to battle the others, then quickly switches to Iron Man. Thor arrives to stop the battle and the Phantom tries to seize his form, but since Thor is a god and not human, it's the Space Phantom who is hurled into Limbo, never to return. Hulk, realizing the others do not really like or trust him, quits the Avengers and leaves.

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Jack Kirby
Paul Reinman
Jack Kirby (Cover Penciler)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)


> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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