Issue(s): Avengers #161, Avengers #162
Then Henry Pym attacks in his Ant-Man persona. His attack is very effectively depicted, making Ant-Man look like a threat for the first time.
The Wasp shows up to explain that Pym is having another nervous breakdown. Even designing herself a slutty new costume didn't help assuage his psychological problems.
It turns out that Pym's problems were exacerbated (or perhaps just taken advantage of) by Ultron.
Despite a nice showing by the Scarlet Witch...
...Ultron is able to defeat the Avengers, seemingly killing them. He takes Pym and Janet to his secret lab. His goal is to create a mate for himself. The mate will be based on the Wasp's persona, fittingly enough considering his overt Oedipus complex.
Ultron uses Pym's expertise to start the process of draining the Wasp's lifeforce into the robot body (the robot will eventually be called Jocasta (the name of Oedipus' mother in the myth), but she is unnamed in these issues).
Meanwhile, Thor returns to the Avengers Mansion to find most of the Avengers seemingly dead (although it is soon revealed they are merely in an Ultron-induced deathlike state), and the remaining few - Black Panther, Wonder Man, and Iron Man - scrambling to call in some reserve Avengers (There's a brief interlude with Hawkeye and the Two-Gun Kid hanging out on a ranch with some lady friends.).
Now that they've got Thor, they launch an assault on Ultron...
...but he's too powerful even for these heavy hitters.
Wonder Man starts realizing that he could actually die (again) in this battle, and it starts to rattle him.
Iron Man, the pragmatist, doesn't bother actually trying to fight Ultron, but instead threatens to destroy Jocasta. Ultron withdraws from the battle.
The issue is left with Pym still stark raving mad.
Perez's art is very nice. You can see all the detail in the lab machinery and stuff. It's not exactly flashy; in fact, the reason it is so good is that there are many compressed panels with lots going on in each, and yet they all manage to look good. His new costume designs for Wonder Man and the Wasp aren't so hot, though.
Shooter is clearly doing a lot with this series. You can see the Vision and the Scarlet Witch developing a bit, and he's doing some interesting stuff with Pym, obviously. Taking the time to show what's going on with Hawkeye and Two Gun Kid, without having them engaging in some gratuitous action/fight, is also a good development.
Ultron's appearance here was actually the culmination of some background machinations that involved helping the Grim Reaper resurrect Wonder Man and reviving the Black Knight statue, but the details were never explained. See the Appendix for more details.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: This needs to take place before Yellowjacket and the Wasp's appearance in Marvel Team-Up #61-62 according to an editors note on the letters page for Avengers #165. Thor appears here out-of-time. In issue #175 it is revealed that the Collector had been pulling Thor out of the timestream whenever the Avengers were in grave danger, and this appearance is specifically cited. Therefore Thor's appearance here does not need to fit chronologically with any appearances elsewhere, and technically shouldn't "count" as an appearance, although i do have him listed for now.
Continuity Implant? N
Reprinted In: N/A
Inbound References (11): show
Mmmmm, sexy naked Wasp! :)
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