Legends notwithstanding, the so-called "Golden" and "Silver" Age of comics were built on the backs of many an underpaid comic book character. Sure, the headliners like Batman and Spider-Man were well-compensated for their efforts, but for every power player in the comics biz, there are 500 guys like Giant Man, underpaid by and under contract to Marvel or DC comics. First as Ant-Man, then as Giant Man, Pym had never been a big earner, and was often heard to bitterly complain about his salary. Working-class heroes would sometimes do jobs for other publishers under assumed names, but Pym was unfortunate enough to be first superhero to be fired from his feature for crossing company lines. A one-time gig for Archie comics as "Giantguy" would have netted him a much-needed $200, had the Archie proofreader not corrected the "error" before press time. Marvel publisher Martin Goodman was outraged to see his poorly-disguised employee on a rival publisher's cover, and fired Giant Man immediately, replacing his feature in Tales to Astonish with the Sub-Mariner. Stan Lee quickly rehired Pym (at reduced pay and stripped of dental benefits) and relegated him to the background of the Avengers where he remained until that one time he went upside the Wasp's head.
DCAU #163: Return of the Hero
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