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Captain America #438: Review

Apr 1995
Mark Gruenwald, Dave Hoover

Story Name:

The Bombs Bursting in Air

Review & Comments

Rating:
3.5 stars

Captain America #438 Review by (June 7, 2017)
Comments: Danny Bulanadi and Scott Koblish share inking duties on this issue. The titles for issues #438-443 are lines from the American National Anthem. Cap mentions that this is his fourth encounter with Flag-Smasher; the previous three were in issues #312, 321-322, and 348-349; his most recent appearance was in CAPTAIN AMERICA SAM WILSON #14. A second Flag-Smasher encountered a number of other heroes including Spider-Man, Nomad (Rikki Barnes), and Venom before dying in action against Deadpool.

Review: A new look for Captain America? Yikes. This armor more or less turns him into the Iron Patriot and looks silly by covering Cap's nose. The only way to make Cap more ridiculous would be to give him wings. So until that day comes, the best they can do is to pit Cap against baddies flying through the air on skis. Fast-pace, lots of action, Cap gritting his teeth make this an okay issue though he doesn't seem to be Cap anymore with his array of gadgets. Hope this works out. 3.5/5



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America #438 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Captain America, paralyzed by the effects of his Super-Soldier serum, now wears an armored suit devised by Tony Stark and Hank Pym. He trains with it, aided by Iron Man and Giant-Man, testing the armor's capabilities. When Shellhead suggests a full inspection, Cap declines and immediately jets off to what may be the last mission of his life....

In Washington D.C., Flag-Smasher outlines to his ULTIMATUM agents about his new plan, Operation Do or Die. He has kidnapped one of Cap's network of computer hackers, Gavin, and wants the kid to notify Cap and lead him into a trap....

Free Spirit and Jack Flag are picked up in Arizona by Zack Moonhunter in a Quinjet where they see the phony warning from Gavin. Unable to contact Cap, they decide to investigate on their own....

Interlude: Bernie Rosenthal visits a decrepit house and as she knocks at the door, she is suddenly seized by someone inside....

As the Quinjet approaches their hideout, Flag-Smasher sends agents on ski jets to attack the craft. The baddies install an override device on the jet which sends it speeding out of control toward the Washington Monument. Moonhunter hits the eject button, launching Free Spirit and Jack Flag to relative safety, and manages to miss the monument, crashing the jet into the Potomac River. Now the newly armored Captain America arrives on the scene and duels in the sky with the ULTIMATUM agents. Employing the gadget-type weapons of the armor, wrapping baddies in shrouds, wrecking their balance with a distortion beam, and using his guided shield, he takes down all but two of the ski jet villains. The last two, however, fire rockets directly at the White House; Cap launches anti-missile missiles and the disaster is averted. He pursues the agents through the air to their hideout and confronts Flag-Smasher who is using Gavin as a hostage. The boy kicks the baddie, allowing Cap to take him down. F-S then detonates a bomb and Cap is able to protect Gavin with his body and they escape safely, linking up with Free and Jack....

Cap calls all of his friends and allies (though not all of them—see next issue), and reveals the secret of his health problems. He informs them that he could die at any minute and wants to make the most of his limited time left. And he doesn't want pity.... He leaves and only his childhood friend Arnie Roth follows. Arnie then reveals that he has terminal cancer. The two embrace....  


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Dave Hoover
Danny Bulanadi
Ashley Posella
Dave Hoover (Cover Penciler)
Dave Hoover (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)