Tales (1) #137 - 140
The interception of a vital microfilm thwarts S.H.I.E.L.D.'s task to stop Hydra's launch of its latest super weapon, the Betatron Bomb, throwing the free world into a panic. Fury joins forces with Tony Stark to launch a counter-weapon, the Brainosaur, but Hydra attacks Stark's lab and kidnap Fury. At his secret base, the Imperial Hydra's attempts to interrogate Fury in hopes of learning the secret of the Brainosaur all end in failure. Laura Brown, daughter of the Imperial Hydra sees Fury as her chance to stop her father's mad scheme and she helps free the agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. Together they take on Hydra's agents.
Meanwhile Tony Stark and S.H.I.E.L.D. launch the Brainosaur from the helicarrier and the super weapon disables the Betatron Bomb in space. Dum Dum leads a rescue squad of agents using a captured Hydra flying saucer, arriving in time to help Fury and Laura put down Hydra. In the course of events, the Supreme Hydra is killed while unmasked, as his men do not believe that a man like he could have been their leader. Afterwards, Fury lets Laura Brown go free.
continuity confusion follows these issues as Hydra lives up to its
famous motto, "cut one arm, two more shall take its place".
Although Arnold Brown is depicted to be the founder of Hydra, a product
of his desire for world domination to provide for his daughter (call
it Darth Vader syndrome), subsequent stories in both Strange
Tales and Captain Savage and his Leatherneck
Raiders feature Baron Von Strucker
as the brains of the organization. It seems odd to reconcile Von Strucker
and Brown's ambition for world domination within the very same organization.
Even the creative team itself seems confused, as Brown referred to
himself as the Imperial Hydra while Von Strucker called himself the
Supreme Hydra, which at first seems like a way out of the confusion
(Supreme is a higher "rank" then Imperial), but falters when
in later issues, Brown is described alternately as the first Hydra "chief" or
the first Supreme Hydra. Further adding to the confusion is the exact
relationship between the Red Skull's THEM and AIM, all of which seem
to be extensions or in some way related to Hydra. As the Silver Age
came and went, the origin of Hydra simplified itself to the Red Skull
being the original planner of Hydra, with the Baron as his aide-de-camp
in actually organizing it (call it the Palpatine syndrome), leaving
Arnold Brown as a minor, often ignored footnote.