Marvel’s silliest team of superheroes makes a triumphant return to the spotlight in Avengers Unlimited as they attempt to capture a Spider-Man enemy.
Among the many superhero teams Marvel has had over the years, none have ever been as quirky as the Great Lakes Avengers. And now, subscribers to Marvel Unlimited get to revisit this mismatched group of heroes when they go after the Rhino.
The Great Lakes Avengers, or also known as the GLA, are a sister team to the West and East Coast Avengers, but they were really just a ragtag group of odd heroes who protected the citizens of the Midwest. The team was founded by Mr. Immortal, a man that could recover from fatal injuries and essentially never stay dead. The GLA started because of these circumstances — Mr. Immortal sent out an ad for other heroes like him to join in a team together (and hopefully he wouldn’t have to die as often).
The Great Lakes Avengers Are Marvel’s Most Ridiculous Team
The GLA featured an amusing selection of superheroes like Big Bertha, who could control the tissue in her body to enlarge her body or slim it down, and Flatman, who can stretch his body like the Fantastic Four’s Reed Richards. Although in Flatman’s case, he’s just permanently flat like a board. Almost immediately after forming, the GLA was flagged down by Hawkeye for using the name ‘Avengers’. And once Hawkeye found out that the team wasn’t a bunch of frauds and was rather just a bit inexperienced, he decided to mentor the team alongside his wife Mockingbird.
Not surprisingly, mainly due to legal issues, the team went through many name changes. However, the good thing about a major team like the Avengers frequently disbanding and reforming, was they were able to keep the name Great Lakes Avengers for a long period of time. The GLA welcomed new members, like Good Boy and Squirrel Girl, and eventually set up headquarters in Detroit. However, their time in the spotlight was cut short when Deadpool came to announce that the team was effectively fired, the GLA’s legal name claim having been not held up in court alongside the other Avengers teams.
The Great Lakes Avengers are Back – And Facing a Spider-Man Villain
Originally introduced in 1989, the GLA is back in Avengers Unlimited #26 (by Kyle Starks and David Baldeón). Released on the Marvel Unlimited app, the comic is filled with nostalgic fun that blends with the light-heartedness of the GLA. Doorman, whose body could be used as an opening to anything, starts the story off by announcing how he’s a social media influencer now while the team is on a stakeout. And while the other GLA members try to figure out what that means, the Rhino escapes from a building he’s broken into, making a run for it with an expensive looking gem.
The team bursts into action and Mr. Immortal is almost immediately killed while Flatman attempts to wrangle the Rhino by wrapping himself around the supervillain’s body. The distraction however is enough for Big Bertha to launch the Rhino toward the water tower, where the Doorman is stationed. The Rhino phases through him and is effectively trapped by the GLA, an uncharacteristically easy win for the team. The GLA provides a child-like giddiness that other superhero teams like the East and West Coast Avengers just don’t have. They have some distance from more serious topics and high stakes storylines, providing a nice change of pace. While they might be a joke to some, the newest Infinity Comic shows they are just as capable of saving the day.