The Oldest MCU Characters Based On Their First Comics Appearance
The Marvel Cinematic Universe may not to be too long in the tooth yet, but its characters have been around for a little longer than 15 minutes. In fact, the MCU features a few of the oldest characters in comic book history.
What's particularly interesting to note is how many of these characters have stayed the same or evolved from their first appearance. A hero like Vision is drastically different from his original debut, while someone like Iron Man hasn't strayed too far from how he was first presented to readers. With that said, let's take a look at the oldest characters in Marvel history and when they made their official debuts.
Debut: October 1939
Created by comics icon Bill Everett, Namor originally appeared as part of a planned giveaway comic that never came to fruition. When that fell through, he swam right into the pages of Marvel Comics #1. In the issue, Namor battles against humans for stepping into his seas (surprise, surprise) in the story titled "The Sub-Mariner," which also serves as a brief and early origin story for him. Interestingly enough, Marvel Comics #1 also marks the debut of the original Human Torch. Even here in his first appearance, Namor's righteous anger would make Tenoch Huerta proud.
Debut: August 1940
Before Scarlett Johansson's Natasha Romanoff, Claire Voyant (comic book names are amazing, right?) was the first person to hold the Black Widow mantle. Created by George Kapitan and Harry Sahle and debuting in Mystic Comics #4, this Black Widow isn't a super-spy but a medium who speaks to the dead and does the bidding of the red guy downstairs. Plus, her touch is pretty deadly, too, so don't try to shake her hand. How about that rad costume, though?
Debut: November 1940
Before everyone's favorite android - the Vision - made his bow in Marvel Comics, another character was floating around with a chromedome and a cape using the same name. Debuting in Marvel Mystery Comics #13 and created by Joe Simon and the legendary Jack Kirby, this version of Vision is an alien space cop from a strange place called Smokeworld. Basically, he's Marvel's version of the Green Lantern Abin Sur and does his best to protect the universe. Even back then, he doesn't look too dissimilar from Paul Bettany's incarnation of the character.
Debut: March 1941
Captain America Comics #1 isn't only important for marking the debut of America's favorite Hitler-punching son. That landmark issue also introduces his BFF, Bucky Barnes, and his greatest adversary, Red Skull. That said, the story titled "The Riddle of the Red Skull" does suggest the villain actually meets his maker in the end - which obviously doesn't stick in continuity. All three characters were created by the wonderous team of Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. It's hard to say if he had “America's A**” all the way back then…
- Photo: Marvel Comics
Debut: November 1960
Created by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Larry Lieber, the tree creature known as Groot debuted in Tales to Astonish #13. In this issue, though, he isn't the lovable Guardians of the Galaxy member who only utters three words. Instead, he's a hulking monster from Planet X who wants to cause chaos and destruction - plus, he knows how to converse in complete sentences. But he is an alien tree named Groot, so it still counts…
- Photo: Marvel Comics
Debut: November 1961
While the original Human Torch had debuted years earlier, Reed Richards and the rest of the Fantastic Four made their bow alongside the updated Torch in Marvel Comics' The Fantastic Four #1. Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the first issue of the series provides an origin story for how the members gained their powers, as well as the group's first skirmish with the Mole Man, who sounds about as threatening as a stale piece of bread. He doesn't much look like John Krasinski there, does he?