Actually this one ain't much of a secret I'd suspect.
The Invaders of course are the Golden Age's Timely Big Three, Human
Torch, Sub-Mariner, and Captain America. They got their own book in
the mid-70's when uber-fanboy-turned-pro Roy Thomas revised the
history of the Golden Age and folded it into the then current Marvel
Age. I loved it all!
But like the Defenders was sparked in part by the "Titans Three"
stories in Sub-Mariner where Subby, the Hulk, and the Silver Sufer
teamed up, the Invaders got a preview of sorts in The Mighty Avengers.
During the first Kang gambit against the Grandmaster, the Avengers
were pitted against various foes, specially the newly created homage
to the JLofA the Squadron Sinister and later against the best of the
best from the WWII era, specifically Cap, Subby, and the Torch. That
battle was just part of a larger tale, but was revisited specifically
later in The Invaders Annual #1 when the conflict was presented not
from the perspective of the Avengers (Yellowjacket, Black Panther,
and Vision) but from the P.O.V. of the newly dubbed Invaders
themselves. Roy took time out to clarify why Cap used a different
shield and why Subby wore black trunks (the kinds of details I think
indicate that Roy might just be a hair touched...but in a good
These vintage tales are getting the reprint treatment this spring
from Mighty Marvel. I for one am anxious to read these tales again.
Not only do we get some luscious Sal Buscema and Sam Grainger artwork
on the Avengers story, but the Invaders annual features work by
Golden Age talents Don Rico, Lee Elias, and Alex Schomburg.
It also features a reprint from 2005 (strange to reprint that
Whether I follow the Avengers/Invaders series is an open question
right now, but this reprint I'm looking forward to.