It's probably no interest to you at all that by the time I was really reading Marvel Comics (thanks to "Spidey Super Stories" on the Electric Company), the Beast was an Avenger. It wasn't until years later that I learned he had been one of the X-Men:
Is that not a bitchin' cover? Love it. I loved X3: The Last Stand primarily because I got to see the Beast. Poor Hank didn't get much respect in the X-Men back in the day, and he was not only the first to leave that team, but the first X-Men to join the Avengers. That's why, when everyone went all spazzy over Wolverine joining the Avengers a couple of years ago, I just yawned. It had been done before.
And it had been done better. The Beast was one of my favorite Avengers, having already won my heart in an issue of Marvel Team-Up where he and Spider-Man fought the Griffin. He was smart, funny, and he had fangs. How bad-ass was that?
I have only found a few issues of Amazing Adventures where he appeared. Only one, actually, where he and the Angel first fought the Griffin and the Beast's fur had gone from gray to black. But that issue, along with the one reprinted here in Avengers v1 #136, give me the idea I should track down the rest.
Here's one thing that bugged me, though:
Granted, I don't think I've ever seen the Beast take a bullet, but really? Is he really bulletproof? Nah. The Hulk is bulletproof in that "I heal so fast it just seems like bullets bounce off me" kind of way. But not Hank. Is he?
This was a great era for the Avengers. The Scarlet Witch was off skinny-dipping with the Vision, Mantis had gone somewhere-and-I-don't-care-where, and the Beast was lending some much-needed personality to the team.
But, as with all things, there was a terrible, terrible cost:
Amen, Hawkeye. Moondragon? Nuts.
Let's watch some Spidey Super Stories, shall we?
And yes, that is Morgan Freeman narrating. How awesome is that?
See you tomorrow!