Of Robin Hoods and Roustabouts

On a sunny afternoon in Nassau County, Clint Barton and Scott Lang attend a traveling carnival. Scott is there having fun with his daughter enjoying the attractions, while Clint is following a lead concerning possible criminal activity. the Avengers’ paths collide when supervillain Taskmaster is discovered at the carnival. Inside a giant circus tent, Ant-Man and the archer take the fight to Taskmaster and his thugs.

When things start going badly, Taskmaster launches a bomb at the crowd to distract the heroes. Hawkeye fires an arrow at the dummy shaped bomb with Ant-Man holding on to it. The Ant-Man Arrow was born! Ant-Man disarms the bomb as it falls towards the grandstand floor. The heroes save the day, but Taskmaster escapes again.


The cover by Hannigan and Janson is an iconic image. In fact, I’m willing to bet the cover came before the story was written. Fan art is rife with pictures riffing on this pose, including more than one homemade Ant-Man movie poster.

Update: This was the first time that Scott Lang Ant-Man rode an arrow in flight, but it turns out that Hank Pym did it once before in his Goliath identity. In Avengers Annual #2 (1968) by Roy Thomas, Don Heck, Werner Roth and Vince Colletta, a shrunken Hank Pym was fired into a time machine so he could destroy it from within.

Story Spotlight

  • Title: “Of Robin Hoods and Roustabouts”
  • Writing: David Michelinie
  • Pencils: Greg Larocque
  • Inks: Brett Breeding
  • Cover: Ed Hannigan & Klaus Janson
  • Publication: The Avengers #223 (1982)



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