The Avengers never participate in missions with The Avengers. Whoa there. Hold the smartphone! Confused? You have every reason to be so. Is this an ultra evil plot cooked up by Ultron working with Thanos to deceive? Nope, true believers. This isn’t about a mirror universe segment of Marvel’s heroes. I don’t mean laboratory spawned clones – them being created nor attacking. I’m talking The Avengers, hailing from across the pond – those who live and fight their battles in the UK.
However, considering the British spy TV show, The Avengers, was created years before the American superhero group of the same name, we need to talk things over. Now since everyone’s talking about that box office buster Endgame, it seems time the two groups were fully and properly integrated.
Who’s Avenging Whom?
With all of this avenging going on, it begs the spandex spanning question: How do the British Avengers stack up against the American superheroes?
Who exactly are The Avengers?
Although the 1961 UK released television show has gone through many permutations throughout its evolution, the form most recognizable to fans is John Steed fighting villains alongside a woman partner such as Emma Peel – his most famous associate. The Avengers are spies, secret agents – ultra crime fighting good guys. Think of Steed as being sort of James Bond without the martini – Shaken, not stirred.
John Steed played by Patrick Macnee and Emma Peel played by Diana Rigg stands as the line-up most fans champion. Although Honor Blackman playing Cathy Gale preceded Rigg, and arguably, she created the iconic template for Steed’s formidable females. As a leather catsuit wearing fighter – complete with boots known has kinky boots – Gale ushered in a female super hero vibe long before Black Widow in Marvel’s Avengers.
Fan adoration is all well and good, and certainly shouldn’t be ignored, but numbers speak volumes. Data decides. Want statistical proof of how beloved John Steed and company are? The British espionage show The Avengers scores so big as a cult show, in 2007, it was ranked #20 on TV Guide’s Top Cult Shows Ever.
In 1998, a big budget feature film starring Uma Thurman and Ralph Fiennes as Peel and Steed, opposite Sean Connery as a big baddie was released to theaters. Sadly, the film disappointed as a mega-flop with both fans and critics alike.
Marvel Comics created their super powered Avengers in 1963 – 2 years after Steed and company let lose in fighting the big baddies. Over the years, the British Avengers have appeared or been referenced in various comics, including; Captain Britain and Doctor Who, Superman, Batman, Kingdom Come, plus the action packed exploits of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.
Marvel’s The Avengers: Endgame is now on its way to becoming the biggest cinematic adventure of all time. It’s set to break most movie box office records – such as those set by James Cameron for his alien romp, Avatar. Remember, however, that the British Avengers with John Steed and cohorts Cathy Gale and Emma Peel, came to prominence first. And who knows, maybe both would be the better if they joined forces.