Countdown to Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Day 20: The Helicarrier!

shieldhelicarrierlayout
The layout of the original S.H.I.E.L.D. helicarrier, drawn by Jim Steranko, for Marvel Comics.

We at GeekMom are eagerly counting down the days to the premiere of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on September 24th by looking at all things S.H.I.E.L.D.-related.

Today, fun facts about the helicarrier. Or should I say helicarriers. Because there are multiple models. Which is a good thing because they get blown up quite a bit. The Avengers scenes inflicting severe damage to the flying aircraft carrier was simply following tradition.

  • In the current Marvel Universe, Tony Stark, Forge, and Reed Richards contributed to building the helicarrier. In reality, it was Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, with an assist by Jim Steranko
  • When Iron Man/Tony Stark was Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., he rebuilt a helicarrier to his specifications and also changed their color scheme to red and gold.
  • Red Hulk (yes, there’s a Red Hulk) destroyed the helicarrier specially designed by Stark.
  • The helicarrier likely won’t be appearing in the television show, as they’re headquartering the team in a fancy jet that reminds me of DC’s Birds of Prey flying headquarters. That plane has a snarky, kick-ass pilot too: Zinda, Lady Blackhawk.
  • In the Ultimate universe, the helicarrier was also S.H.I.E.L.D. headquarters until it was destroyed by the Green Goblin.
  • The helicarrier in The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes animated series was destroyed by a Skrull invasion.
  • The first real life helicarrier appeared in the Nick Fury: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. television movie starring David Hasselhoff. Yes, the Hoff.
  • There was a helicarrier designed especially to battle Godzilla (yes, that Godzilla) named Behemoth. It was commanded by Dum Dum Dugan. The Behemoth was later destroyed by S.H.I.E.L.D. itself in a crop burning-type of decision.
  • Are you noticing a theme? (I often wonder how expensive these are to replace.)
  • You can buy a toy helicarrier of your very own. Prices at Toys R Us, Amazon and Wal-Mart ranged from $53 to $105. So it appears they’re not cheap as toys either.
  • Nick Fury, who’s currently MIA in the Marvel Universe, has stolen at least two helicarriers. Maybe he got tired of them being wrecked.
  • In the animated film Ultimate Avengers, several helicarriers appear. They are, naturally, destroyed, this time in an attack by the alien Chitauri, who also appeared in The Avengers as the invading force.

My conclusion: helicarriers are very dangerous to be aboard, even though they look cool. It’s just as well the characters on the show won’t be using one.

Of course, we could lay odds on how long their new airborne jet headquarters stays intact.

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Writer, Mom, Geek and Superhero. though usually not all four on the same day. Author of the award-winning Phoenix Institute Superhero series and the steampunk novel, The Curse of the Brimstone Contract.