The GeeksverseCaptain America #1

Captain America #1
Published on Wednesday, July 13, 2011 by

Written by: Ed Brubaker
Penciled by: Steve McNiven
Inked by: Mark Morales
Colors: Justin Ponsor
Letters: VC's Joe Caramagna
Cover Art: A- McNiven w/ Morales & Ponsor; B- John Romita Sr. w/ Joe Sinnott & Val Staples: C- Neal Adams w/ Justin Ponsor; D- Olivier Coipel
Associate Editor: Lauren Sankovitch
Editor: Tom Brevoort

I understand the marketing reason beyond relaunching Captain America in a new #1 as well as putting Steve Rogers back in the suit. There’s a major movie coming out and they want the comics to line up with the movie.

That’s all well and good except because of the timing, this issue is forced to suffer a little bit.

When does this story take place? Steve is in the suit so it has to be sometime after Fear Itself. Nick Fury is around and moving, so it has to be at the end of Secret Warriors. But because both of those are still unfinished, it causes this issue to not be able to place itself. There’s no mention of Fear Itself or Secret Warriors so it causes this story to float.

Brubaker, to his credit, crafts a story that doesn’t need to be placed. It’s only continuity buffs, like myself, that will probably get the floating feeling. Well that and the “S.H.I.E.L.D. no longer exists” line from a doctor and then there’s Fury a couple pages later calling in a code to get some satellites tasked. Aside from those two moments, Brubaker’s story can float and still be good.

And it’s a good story.

There’s some retconning, adding a couple of new characters into the history of Cap’s WWII adventures. Brubaker has shown that he’s very capable of seamlessly working in new ideas into Cap’s existing history and making it all work. I’m pretty sure he’ll manage to do that here as well.

The story is fast paced, interspaced with some flashbacks that help bring the present up on the details of the past. One of the problems of retconning is faced in this issue as Cap and Fury tell Sharon Carter about the “new” history that involves Codename: Bravo and Peggy Carter, Cap’s wartime love and Sharon’s Aunt (who was herself retconned to deal with the aging issue, going from daughter to neice). The issue is why wouldn’t Sharon already know the history of Bravo and her Aunt? Peggy’s stories are what made Sharon become a spy in the first place? Peggy, or Cap and Fury, never would have mentioned Bravo before?

I’m worried about Brubaker backing himself into a corner as he’s adding lots to Cap’s WWII adventures. Secret Avengers he added John Steele and The Prince of Orphans.

But even with the retconning issue the story is still good.

And McNiven’s art helps the whole thing.

It’s amazing art, probably the best from McNiven that I’ve seen yet. His layouts are excellant, changing from page to page and working with the story. He’s got a nice eye for details. His faces are very expressive.

I’m hoping he can keep up this level of work every month.

Captain America #1 receives
4 out of 5

The story is strong enough to overcome some issues with timing and retconning.

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