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CSBG Archive

When We First Met – Agents of SHIELD, Part 1

In this feature we spotlight the various characters, phrases, objects or events that eventually became notable parts of comic lore. Not major stuff like “the first appearance of Superman,” but rather, “the first time someone said, ‘Avengers Assemble!'” or “the first appearance of Batman’s giant penny” or “the first appearance of Alfred Pennyworth” or “the first time Spider-Man’s face was shown half-Spidey/half-Peter.” Stuff like that. Here is an archive of all the When We First Met features so far! Check ‘em out!

This is the first part of a three-part look at the debuts of notable agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. In this first part, we’ll look at those agents who became the Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. at one point or another.

First off, a big chunk of the notable S.H.I.E.L.D. agents all debuted in the same issue, Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandoes #1. This issue gave us Nick Fury, Dum Dum Dugan, Gabe Jones and more…

Secondly, Sharon Carter, Tony Stark, Norman Osborn and Steve Rogers’ first appearances won’t be detailed here. They’re either too famous or too tied in with other character’s continuity to show up here.

It is kind of funny how there were basically three Directors of SHIELD for the first thirty years of the Marvel Universe (and one of them, Fury’s predecessor, was never really shown) but since the 1990s, there have been about 312. Give or take a few.

One of the first new Directors of SHIELD was G.W. Bridge, an old friend of Cable who was now hunting X-Force down in X-Force #1…

Maria Hill is probably the most prominent of the non-Nick Fury Directors (at least as far as “prominently known as a SHIELD agent, unlike Iron Man, Cap, etc.). She was originally supposed to debut at the end of Brian Michael Bendis’ mini-series Secret War, but delays changed it so that Bendis had to introduce her before that series ended. So she made her bow in New Avengers #4…

Finally, one of the odder “Directors” of SHIELD, Daisy “Quake” Johnson never really seemed to get much traction as the Director of SHIELD. I think it just sort of seemed odd to other writers, particularly when Maria Hill was available to use. This is not to knock Daisy as a character, as she’s neat, she just seemed odd as a DIRECTOR of SHIELD.

She first debuted in the second issue of the aforementioned Secret War mini-series (that mini-series ended up having a major impact on the Marvel Universe), as the SHIELD agent assigned a group of superhero agents on a mission to Latveria…

Next time, we’ll look at some notable agents who did not become Director of SHIELD!


Wow, and here I thought G.W. Bridge was created as a Punisher character. My ignorance, it abounds! I can’t exactly regret remaining innocent of the Nicieza/Liefeld oeuvre, though.

GW did appear before that X-Force issue in an Avengers issue (I guess written by Roger Stern and pencilled by John Buscema). He was not a SHIELD officer back then.

Perhaps (I don’t believe so, but perhaps) they retroactively said that Bridge was some unnamed character in an old issue of Avengers, but he was not created until X-Force #1.

Wow. Those New Avengers pages are terrible. So the artist (or the writer) didn’t have enough sense to put Steve Rogers in the panel…and we get a shot of Luke Cage clearly talking, with Steve Roger’s dialogue coming from off-panel. I know that’s nitpicky, but it’s one of the small things that has bothered me about Bendis’ work: he just shoehorns dialogue in where it doesn’t make sense.

I didn’t read the “Secret War” mini-series when it first came out, so when Daisy Johnson showed up in other titles, I kept getting her confused with Maria Hill. They had the same role, and looked far too similar. The only way to tell them apart was if she used her abilities (which was infrequent) or her inexperience was being referenced. I’m kind of glad these days they’ve altered her likeness to resemble the TV series incarnation…

Yeah, making Daisy identical to Maria was a bad move.

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