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For other uses, see Avengers Initiative (disambiguation)

"THE AVENGERS INITIATIVE was a program created by S.H.I.E.L.D. Director NICK FURY to bring together a group of remarkable people to face extraordinary threats. Fury's original list of prospective recruits included Anthony Stark, Thor Odinson, Natasha Romanoff, Clint Barton, Bruce Banner, and Captain Steve Rogers. The team first assembled for the BATTLE OF NEW YORK."
Watchers Report[src]

The Avengers Initiative (a.k.a Phase 1; originally conceptualized as the Protector Initiative) was a secret project created by S.H.I.E.L.D. to form the Avengers, a response team comprised of the most able individuals humankind has to offer. The Avengers Initiative will defend Earth from imminent global threats that are beyond the warfighting capability of conventional military forces.

The Avengers Initiative was scrapped by the World Security Council after the alien incursion in New Mexico in favor of a weapons development program known as Phase 2. It was eventually reactivated in 2012 during the Chitauri Invasion.

History

Foundation

"We have no idea what other intergalactic threats are out there. And our one woman security force had a prior commitment on the other side of the universe. S.H.I.E.L.D. alone can't protect us. We need to find more."
"More weapons?"
"More heroes."
Nick Fury and Phil Coulson[src]

Nick Fury writing up "The Protector Initiative"

In 1995, S.H.I.E.L.D. was involved in the conflict with the Kree and the Skrulls, and Nick Fury teamed up with Carol Danvers to save the Skrulls from the Kree and retrieve the Tesseract. Having been inspired by Danvers and witnessing firsthand how humanity is not capable of dealing with intergalactic threats, Fury became determined to protect the Earth from more intergalactic threats like the Kree. He sought to find individuals with incredible powers and abilities just like Danvers in hopes of bringing them together as a team to fight as Earth's protectors. The initiative was originally named "The Protector Initiative", however, after Fury saw Danvers' call-sign from the time when she was in the United States Air Force, he renamed it into the Avengers Initiative.[1]

Financing

Hawkeye and Black Widow's Initiative files

"S.H.I.E.L.D.'s putting every dime into the Triskelion."
"Well, not all the dimes. Fury's quietly started a new initiative. Instead of this catch-and-release with powered people, we form a team, take Earth's mightiest to find out if they're heroes."
Melinda May and Phil Coulson[src]

While S.H.I.E.L.D. was devoting a majority of its resources into the building of the Triskelion, Nick Fury used finances to observe individuals who possibly had superpowers, sending agents to investigate these individuals and have them placed on the Index for later encounters. In 2008, Phil Coulson and Melinda May discussed the initiative enacted by Fury as they went to Manama, Bahrain to investigate Eva Belyakov.[2] Fury had also included two of S.H.I.E.L.D. most elite agents, Natasha Romanoff and Clint Barton, for the Avengers Initiative due to their unique and incredible skills that rank them above other agents.

First Recruit

Nick Fury introduces himself to Tony Stark

"I'm here to talk to you about the Avengers Initiative."
Nick Fury to Tony Stark[src]

Tony Stark went home after he publicly announced he was Iron Man, only to find Nick Fury already there. Fury went to find Stark to inform him that there was an entire world of incredible people, just like him, and of the Avengers Initiative.[3]

Closing the Project

Nick Fury discusses the review on Tony Stark

"Phase 2 isn't ready, our enemy is. We need a response team."
"The Avengers Initiative was shut down."
Nick Fury and Gideon Malick[src]

Nick Fury decided that after reading Black Widow's review about him, Iron Man was not fit to join the Avengers Initiative, though the Iron Man armor was.[4] The Avengers Initiative was scrapped soon after by the World Security Council after the alien incursion in New Mexico in favor of a weapons development program known as Phase 2. However, the simultaneous encounter with Thor had him included in the Avengers Initiative.[5]

Requested Member

Tony Stark is sent to ask about Abomination

"They want Blonsky in the team."
"The Abomination?"
"They really don't like when you call him that."
Phil Coulson and Jasper Sitwell[src]

After meeting with Jasper Sitwell in a cafe, Phil Coulson informed him that the World Security Council had accepted the Avengers Initiative, but had ordered the Abomination to join the team roster, as they were blaming Hulk for the destruction in New York City. They ended up sending Tony Stark to meet with Thaddeus Ross and convinced him to refuse Abomination's admission into the project, as well as attempted to recruit Hulk into the team.[6][7]

Search for Captain America

Captain America is found after sixty-six years

"You've been asleep, Cap. For almost seventy years."
Nick Fury to Steve Rogers[src]

Sixty-six years after Captain America's crash landing, a S.H.I.E.L.D. team led by Fury searched for his body. A fan of the Captain, Coulson, was also part of this small team. The team searched for two years to find Rogers' body. When they finally found him, they defrosted him and then shipped his body to New York City. When Rogers arrived in New York City, he was kept in a simulated 1942 environment to try to ease him into what was happening.

Nick Fury greets an awake Steve Rogers

When he awoke, he quickly realized it was not real and escaped into the streets of a 2011 New York. In Times Square, Rogers encountered Fury who told him that he's been "asleep" for nearly seventy years. Rogers then realized that many of his old friends were very likely dead, including his love interest, Peggy Carter.[8]

Testing The Database

Clint Barton was ordered by Nick Fury to break into the Helicarrier and access the database of the Avengers Initiative to test their security. Barton was able to accomplish this easily, and after looking over Fury's report on the candidates, he questioned Fury on their reliability, which Fury assured him that they needed to count on them.[9]

The Avengers

The assembled heroes argue with each other

"There was an idea, Stark knows this, called the Avengers Initiative. The idea was to bring together a group of remarkable people, see if they could become something more. See if they could work together when we needed them to, to fight the battles that we never could."
Nick Fury[src]

Loki stole the Tesseract from Project P.E.G.A.S.U.S., and destroyed the base, killing eighty people during the process, causing Nick Fury to revive the project. He called in Captain America to join, and sent Black Widow to get Hulk, who was now living in a rural village in India. Meanwhile, Phil Coulson was sent to Stark Tower to retrieve Tony Stark.[10] Thor returned to Earth from Asgard in order to get his adopted brother.[10][11]

The Avengers assemble and fight as a team

After the Avengers were formed, they were not cooperating and failed to prevent Loki's escape from the Helicarrier. They believed they were not meant to be together and were thinking of disbanding the team. It was only Phil Coulson's death that motivated them to fight the Chitauri invasion on New York City. After their victory in defeating the Chitauri, Nick Fury and Maria Hill agree that it was the correct choice to form the team and that they will return for any future threat.[10]

Alternate Universe

Assassinating the Avengers

"The Avengers Initiative. Seems our killer is going after the candidates."
"If someone wanted to kneecap S.H.I.E.L.D., that's a good place to start."
Nick Fury and Natasha Romanoff[src]
This section needs a rewrite

In an alternate universe, most of the original Avengers candidates were killed by an unknown enemy. Iron Man was killed shortly after being injected with what was supposed to be lithium dioxide in order to slow the palladium poisoning. Black Widow was "arrested" but Nick Fury told her to find out who did it which she set out to do after escaping Brock Rumlow who was escorting her.

In New Mexico, just as Thor was about to attempt to retrieve his hammer, Hawkeye released his arrow, killing the god of thunder. Barton was arrested with him flabbergasted at the events. Barton would later be found dead in his cell having been killed through unknown means and no one visiting him. At the same time, Romanoff visits Culver University to seek answers from Betty Ross in regards to the syringe that Romanoff used on Stark. She discovered that the lithium dioxide didn't even enter Stark's body. Romanoff discovers Bruce Banner with Ross. She soon received the news that Barton has died and she angrily asks who she is gonna kill.

Back in New Mexico, Phil Coulson encounters the arrival of an Asgardian army led by Thor's brother Loki/Avengers Assassinated who demands the killer of Thor. At the university, Thaddeus Ross arrives with his force to capture Banner has he had in the original timeline. While Romanoff was attempting to get Thaddeus to stand down, something the size of a bullet hits Banner with General Ross angrily asking who fired a shot but his soldiers confirm that none of them fired. Banner transforms in to the Hulk and attacks before seemingly inflating for no reason and at the tip of the inflation explodes, killing him instantly.

Loki grants Fury time to locate Thor's killer or else he will destroy Earth. Romanoff later discovers that someone that was supposed to be dead accessed files on Tuesday and is soon killed by the person responsible but not before calling Fury and saying "It's Hope, It's all about Hope!". Fury replays Romanoff's final words and finally deduces that its none other than Yellowjacket who wanted revenge after his daughter Hope van Dyne died during a S.H.I.E.L.D. Mission. Yellowjacket fights "Fury" in San Fransisco before it's revealed that he was actually fighting Loki.

Pym is soon arrested by the Einherjar but Fury would soon have another problem as Loki decides to stay on Earth. The next day, Loki arrives at the United Nations to announce that Earth is now under his rule. Fury and Coulson discuss the deaths of the original candidates but Fury says that the Avengers are more than just a team. He later finds Captain America and Captain Marvel also arrives to help.[12]

Candidates

Appearances

References

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