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Captain America #371: Review

Jun 1990
Mark Gruenwald, Ron Lim

Story Name:

Cap’s Night Out

Review & Comments

4 stars

Captain America #371 Review by (June 27, 2012)
Review: A delightfully different story for a superhero title. Yeah it (mostly) lacks the biffing that a comic like this requires but tales like this are a nice change of pace (for the reader and the writer) so long as they don’t become too frequent—or too heavy-handed. The side story complements the main event and gives us a bit of simple characterization which will carry us through the next several issues of Cap’s Romance Comics. And it helps that Diamondback is a fun character to read about, if she isn’t exactly complex.

Comments: A rare appearance by Steve Rogers out of uniform on the cover (when he’s not quitting). First appearance of Jackhammer as a strength-enhanced villain; he had previously appeared as a Hydra agent in DAREDEVIL #123. Poundcakes, a member of the female wrestling team the Grapplers, was introduced in MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE #54-56 (part of the Project Pegasus Saga) and would soon reappear in the “Superia Stratagem” story arc in CAPTAIN AMERICA #387-392.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America #371 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Returning from their battle upstate with the Red Skull, Captain America walks Diamondback to her apartment on the Upper West Side. He says, "Well, see you around," and she throws a fit, expecting more after what they’ve been through. He tells her he is not looking for a partner or a girlfriend so she insists they can be friends and tries to talk him into going out for a fun time. He realizes he hasn’t been on a date since Bernie left and cautiously agrees. She gives him her address and phone number and insists he not wear his uniform and assures him she will be presentable as well. As she walks away, he wonders what just happened….

Diamond rushes home and call her pal Tanya (otherwise known as Black Mamba) to beg for help in getting ready. Tanya arranges a hair appointment for her and wonders about this mysterious guy who has Rachel all a-flutter…. Meanwhile, Cap returns to Avengers HQ and has Jarvis help him shop for some casual new clothes. That evening, Steve knocks on Rachel’s door; both are surprised at how normal—and attractive—the other looks, and both are visibly nervous. As they head to a restaurant in a cab, they are followed by Tanya and Cleo (a/k/a The Asp) who are both curious about this date. When they run into a nighttime traffic jam, Cleo scouts ahead to see what the problem is and discovers a police standoff: minor crook Gamecock has his ex-girlfriend hostage and will not listen to reason. Cleo moves into position in the shadows and stuns Gamecock with a venom blast, then heads back to the car, first making sure that Rachel and Steve didn’t notice anything. After dinner Steve and Rachel head to a magic club where the show is interrupted by the petty crook the Trump. Tanya recognizes he is up to no good so sends out a tendril of mist to hypnotize the punk into walking off stage. Rachel, who thought she recognized the mist, assumes it was part of the show along with everyone else. After the show, Steve and Rachel stroll over to see his old neighborhood and he shows her the sights then she takes him to her childhood stomping grounds nearby. Just as they are about to get romantic, a commotion breaks out nearby. A lover’s spat between enhanced wrestlers Poundcakes and Jackhammer threatens some major property damage and Steve is all for stepping in, when a limo pulls up. Out steps the Serpent Society enforcer Anaconda who snatches up the contentious pair and pulls them into the car which takes off. Back at Rachel’s building, the two share a goodnight kiss and part. As he tries to go to sleep, Steve realizes that he has enjoyed himself and that he has been denying himself too many of life’s simple pleasures. But if they are going to be together, Rachel is going to have to give up her life of crime.

Story #2

Girl Talk

Writer: Mark Gruenwald. Penciler: Mark Bagley. Inker: Don Hudson. Colorist: Nel Yomtov.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Meanwhile, Rachel is on cloud nine after her date with Steve, amazed that he kissed her and that he said something about "next time." She finds Tanya (the Black Mamba) in her apartment, wanting to know how the date went. Rachel gushes over Steve and confesses that she wants to go straight. Tanya tries to talk some sense into her: Rachel wouldn’t know how to support herself honestly, a real man would accept her for what she is, does Rachel really know what she wants from this relationship, etc. After Tanya leaves, Rachel is upset that her good mood has been ruined, mainly by the realization that Tanya is right. She agonizes over her feelings about Cap. But the next morning she calls Tanya to ask if Sidewinder’s sister can use a sales clerk at her fashion boutique….

Ron Lim
Danny Bulanadi
Steve Buccelatto
Ron Lim (Cover Penciler)
Danny Bulanadi (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Rachel Leighton)

(Edwin Jarvis)

Plus: Anaconda, Asp, B.A.D. Girls, Black Mamba, Fabian Stankowicz, Gamecock, Jackhammer, John Jameson, Michael O'Brien, Peggy Carter, Poundcakes.

> Captain America: Book info and issue index

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