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Posted on Jun 24, 2015

A Few Facts You Didn’t Know About Ant-Man

A Few Facts You Didn’t Know About Ant-Man

The second phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes to a close with Ant-Man. Avengers: Age of Ultron has already locked it in as the highest-grossing film series of all time, but you can never have too many superhero movies.

You might remember thinking to yourself, “Ant-Man? Really?” when you first heard about Paul Rudd starring as the titular superhero. But Marvel has already shown that name recognition isn’t a problem in the slightest when it comes to its movies. Guardians of the Galaxy was one of the top-earning films in 2014 (it even made more money than Captain America), and it’s probably fair to wager that most people who saw the movie didn’t know anything about Star-Lord beforehand, let alone the fact that he wasn’t actually an original Guardian.

Similarly, we’re betting that Ant-Man is going to be every bit as awesome as Guardians, even though a lot of people might not know that Ant-Man was an original Avenger. So, here are a few more fun facts about the smallest superhero.

 

Ant-Man was supposed to be a one-off character.

tales-to-astonish-27Art by Jack Kirby, Dick Ayers, Stan Goldberg, Artie Simek

Ant-Man was first featured in a seven-page story in the 1962 comic Tales to Astonish #27. He wasn’t a superhero yet by any means, just a scientist who accidentally shrunk himself to the size of an ant. The book ended up selling so well that Marvel brought the character back as a full-fledged superhero in “The Return of the Ant Man” later that year. A graded, mint-condition copy of that first Tales to Astonish #27 is worth more than $75,000 today.

 

The original Ant-Man was an original Avenger, but the movie isn’t about the original Ant-Man.

tales-to-astonish-25Art by Jack Kirby, Dick Ayers, Stan Goldberg, Artie Simek

Paul Rudd plays Scott Lang in the Ant-Man movie, a reformed criminal who takes on the superhero persona with some encouragement from Hank Pym, the first Ant-Man. Pym had abandoned the Ant-Man role to take on those of various other heroes: Goliath, Giant-Man, and Yellowjacket. Lang became an honorary member of the Fantastic Four before eventually joining the Avengers as a full-fledged member.

 

Ant-Man’s daughter has also been an Ant-Man.

cassie-langFrom Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #3; art by Jim Cheung, Mark Morales, John Livesay, Justin Ponsor, Dave Mikis.

Well, sort of. She didn’t use the Ant-Man name, but Cassandra Lang took up her father’s suit and Ant-Man equipment as the superheroine Stature after his death. During Scott’s time as a member of the Avengers, Cassie lived with him in the Avengers Mansion, and already had great friendships with the others. So, she was readily accepted into the Young Avengers, and later joined the Mighty Avengers and Initiative teams as well.

 

Ant-Man’s ants are an official superhero team themselves.

ant-mans-antsFrom Avengers Vol. 1 #3; art by Jack Kirby, Paul Reinman

Since Ant-Man works with ants so much, it makes sense that he’d nickname a few of them, too. For example, Crosby, Stills, and Nash were a group of three ants that Ant-Man used on a mission to get inside of Vision’s body. Unfortunately, Crosby didn’t make it out alive, but Ant-Man kept the others as pets afterwards.

There’s an alternate universe in which Peter Parker’s Aunt May is Ant-Man.

aunt-may-as-ant-manArt by Bob Layton, Fred Hembeck

This one requires a little more backstory. If you’re familiar with Marvel Comics, you know that there are a bunch of alternate continuities that encompass all of the different timelines and stories. For example, Earth-616 is the mainstream universe that represents the present day of the “real” world, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is its own separate thing, etc. Here’s the list of Marvel Universes on the Marvel Wiki if you feel like breaking your brain.

Marvel’s What If? comics make great use of these, since they explore hypothetical situations in their own, contained universes. That way, there’s “comic book legalese” keeping them from interfering with the “real” stories.

For some reason, Marvel deicded to see what would happen if Aunt May were Ant-Man, in What If? #34 (above). Also included in the same issue: “What if the Fantastic Four were bananas?” Yes, actual, literal bananas. Why? Because Marvel, that’s why.

 


Are you excited for Ant-Man? Which of these facts was your favorite, and why was it number five? If you liked this post and want to see more like it, tell us what you think on Facebook and on Twitter @BuyCostumes!

 

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