Marvel Comics has been busy forming new teams of new characters, as well as blending existing teams of superheroes together to form new teams. Recent examples include the new “Team from Paradise,” The new “Wolverines,” the Uncanny Avengers, and the newly announced “A-Team” of female superheroes. In the old days, keeping track of the superhero teams in the Marvel Comics Universe was fairly straightforward. Stan Lee and his cohort in creativity, Jack Kirby, created two new teams of new characters plus one team of existing heroes in the early 1960s. These teams of course, were the Fantastic Four, the (Uncanny) X-Men, and the Avengers. Over the years, the lineups of these teams would change, with team members leaving, dying, new ones coming on board, and so on. In some cases, members of the X-Men would join the Avengers (Hank McCoy, AKA the Beast) is the best early example. An X-Man Joins the Avengers Today, though, it is neither simple, nor straightforward to keep track of Marvel’s many superhero teams and their porous lineups. (This is not a complaint, mind you, just an observation). For example, in recent months, in the Wolverine family of books (sort of a sub-set of the X-Men family of books), we saw two new teams of mutants and quasi-mutants form following the drawn-out Death of Wolverine story arc. Marvel ran two short-term titles in the wake of Logan’s death: Death of Wolverine: The Logan Legacy and Death of Wolverine: The Weapon X Program. Both titles, by the way, were pretty good! Anyway, in the Logan Legacy series, several existing mutant characters are brought together against their will and told they have to go on a quest for Logan’s body, or be killed if they refused. These mutants included Logan’s son, Daken, Logan’s female clone, X-23, his old archenemy, Sabretooth, his old lover and adversary, Mystique, and another old, conflicted foe, Lady Deathstrike. This group would later be referred to as the “Wolverines.” And, as it turns out..NOTE: MAJOR SPOILER HERE FOR BOTH OF THOSE MINI-SERIES TITLES… Wolverines #3 Variant Cover with X-23 …the captors of these “Wolverines” were the experimental guinea pigs from the Weapon X Program facility at a location called Paradise, which is where Logan, the real Wolverine, died. These new quasi-mutant characters (at this point it is unclear if they are all true mutants, or were given mutant-like powers at Paradise), include Shogun, Neuro, Skel, Junk, and Endo. While they do not seem to have an official team name at this point, and they are probably not to be included in the new Wolverines team, they have been referred to as “The Team from Paradise” on Marvel’s own website. (see Marvel.com) In addition to these X-Men related teams, we have another one in Uncanny Avengers, which is an amalgamation of the terms Uncanny (from the X-Men), and, of course, the Avengers. This is described as a “unity team” formed in the wake of that nasty little dust-up in the Avengers vs. X-Men battle in the Avengers vs. X-Men (abbreviated AvX) crossover hero war event. The current lineup of the Uncanny Avengers includes Rogue, Captain America (Sam Wilson), the Vision, and Brother Voodoo. They are (in Uncanny Avengers vol. 2, #1) searching for the Scarlet Witch and her brother Quicksilver (who were the first two mutants to join the Avengers, way back when…), and they have along as their tracker, Sabretooth (who is also with the Wolverines right now). See how this whole team/lineup change thing can get confusing? Unanny Avengers #1 (2015) Cover And, to add to the multiplicity of teamings and pairings, Marvel recently announced the formation of a new, all-female Avengers team that will be published in May of 2015. The A-Force team will led by She-Hulk, and the founding lineup will include Dazzler, Medusa, Nico Minoru and Singularity, a new “cosmic powered” hero. It should be noted that this lineup of the new team features existing characters from the Avengers (She-Hulk), X-Men (Dazzler), the Inhumans (Medusa), and the Runaways (Nico Minoru). This new team will form after the big Secret Wars Crossover event taking place in the Spring of 2015. Marvel’s New A-Force of Female Heroes Keeping up with these new superhero teams and their changes is not easy. Add to this the fact that Marvel is saying that the Secret Wars crossover will change everything, we may need to make a new scorecard just to keep straight who is with who on what team.