THE AVENGERS: YEAR BY YEAR
A "MARVEL TIME" CALENDAR
Compiled by Paul Bourcier
If you've always wondered about the nature of Marvel Time and about how the adventures of the Avengers figure into a time line plotted on a Marvel Time calendar, look no further! This portion of the Avengers Assemble website plots - year by year and month by month - the history of the Avengers as told in a variety of Marvel comics, portions of comics, and flashbacks, all listed in chronological order.
First of all, I would like to acknowledge the work of George Olshevsky, the pioneer of Marvel chronology. His work, first in his own Marvel Comics Index (published in the late 1970s and early 1980s), then in the several Official Indexes to the Marvel Universe he produced for Marvel (in the mid to late 1980s), inspired my own research into the complex and intricate world of Marvel Time. Thanks to his indexes and those updated indexes (for the Avengers and the X-Men) produced by Marvel in the early 1990s, I've begun to compile an immense Marvel Time Calendar, encompassing all events in the mainstream Marvel Universe that have occurred since just before Fantastic Four #1.
My own research in thousands of Marvel comics has supplemented the information given in the indexes and has given me clues about not only when given adventures occur relative to one another (relative chronology), but also when they occur on a calendar (absolute chronology). Such references as weather patterns, seasons, months, days of the week, holidays, anniversaries of events, elections, lunar phases, characters' and narrators' notes about the amount of time that has passed since previous adventures, are all taken into account. Sometimes these references conflict with one another and turn out to be "topical" (to use an Olshevsky term). Other times, these references turn out to be very accurate. (Incidentally, Marvel Time does indeed proceed at a much slower pace than "real time," but Marvel's official pronouncement that ten years has elapsed since Avengers #1 must be an underestimation.)
For an excellent view of relative chronology in the Marvel Universe, I highly recommend Russ Chappell's Marvel Chronology Project, which lists all the appearances of any Marvel character in chronological order. The Project is located at http://www.chronologyproject.com. Russ has been very helpful to me in resolving continuity glitches and providing me with information about comics I do not have in my own collection. I owe him a huge debt of gratitude.
What I have done here is to pare down and simplify my Marvel Time Calendar to deal only with Avengers-related adventures. I have included all the scenes and stories I could find that pertain to current and former Avengers. In other words, I include all appearances by any Avenger from the time he/she first joins the Assemblers onward. (Actually, I start tracking the Avenger from the time he/she appears in the storyline that leads to his/her joining the group as an active member, reserve member, associate member, etc.) Only canonical Marvel Universe stories are included , so stories such as those in Rampaging Hulk, Vol. 1 do not count. Because these stories are plotted on a calendar, time-travel adventures set solely in other times are not included.
Each year of the Avengers' existence is listed below, beginning with September of Peter Parker's senior year of high school, the month the Avengers first assembled. Each year features a list of entries in chronological order, grouped month by month.
The format for the entries is as follows:
TITLE AND NUMBER OF COMIC (notation of section of the comic or flashback sequence)
(an optional notation about temporal references that confirm or contradict the placement of the story at its point in the calendar)
Names of Avengers who appear in that comic. Behind-the-scenes appearances are noted in brackets.
Select a year below and enjoy. I'm always looking to improve the calendar and make corrections, so if you have suggestions, please e-mail me at email@example.com.
AVENGERS: YEAR ONE (updated 2/18/2000)
AVENGERS: YEAR TWO (updated 7/29/1998)
AVENGERS: YEAR THREE (updated 2/18/2000)
AVENGERS: YEAR FOUR (updated 7/29/1998)
AVENGERS: YEAR FIVE (updated 2/18/2000)
AVENGERS: YEAR SIX
AVENGERS: YEAR SEVEN (updated 2/18/2000)
AVENGERS: YEAR EIGHT (new 7/29/1998)
AVENGERS: YEAR NINE (new 2/18/2000)
AVENGERS: YEAR TEN (new 2/18/2000)