Between September, 1963 and December, 1999, Marvel published 403 issues of “The Avengers.” For its debut, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby brought together some of Marvel’s mightiest new superheroes, including Thor, Iron Man, and the Hulk, to defeat Thor’s nemesis, Loki, “God of Evil.”
Hulk quit the group in issue number two, leaving the rest of the Avengers to deal with the Space Phantom. By issue three, though, Hulk was back, but as the enemy, teaming with Sub-Mariner as he battled his former comrades (Spider-Man made a cameo in that comic, too). Issue four is one of the prized titles of the Avengers’ earliest years, since that marked the first silver-age appearance of Captain America. Other “Avengers” titles of note include numbers 87 and 101, which featured stories by science-fiction author Harlan Ellison.