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Captain America #1: Review

Sep 2023
J. Michael Straczynski, Jesus Saiz

Story Name:

Beginnings

Review & Comments

Rating:
4.5 stars

Captain America #1 Review by (September 20, 2023)

Review: J. Michael Straczynski writes this new volume and it looks like the first arc at least will concentrate on Steve Rogers’ boyhood. It’s been done before but this time it shows Steve as an orphan, trying to get by and getting his first taste of the Nazis. The art by Jesus Saiz gets the job done without being flashy, instead serving the story. We’ll have to see where this goes (especially with the demonic part) but for now, it’s cool.  

Comments: First appearance of the demon Asmoday whose only previous work was a mention in the handbook MARVEL ZOMBIES: THE BOOK OF ANGELS' DEMONS & VARIOUS MONSTROSITIESAs in the previous series, Steve Rogers, who has always been presented as a Brooklynite, is now said to have grown up in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. The Munich Agreement was signed on September 30, 1938. 





 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America #1 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Captain America begins his story by describing a villain creating a giant mechanical wolf, scaling the outside of an office tower, seeking revenge against an enemy. Cap rode his motorcycle on the opposite side, crashed through a window, rode across the floor, then smashed into the mechanical monster….

Steve Rogers meets his building manager about some repairs and is told that the building’s owners have decided that the place is not profitable to maintain and will be demolished after all the residents have been evicted. Steve calls Tony Stark for a loan, calling it is an investment in real estate. He buys the building and announces renovations….

A chat with a neighbor leads Steve to remember his mother, who took him to visit his father’s grave until she died when Steve was 14. He remembers being evicted for non-payment of rent soon after….

Invisible Woman shows up at the apartment to asks for Cap’s help so the Fantastic Four can defeat Psycho-Man in the Microverse. He joins them, is supplied with a jet pack that he wishes he could keep, defeat the villain, and returns, exhausted, to his home. And then the police chase some robbers down the street and Cap once again swings into action. As he takes down one crook, he doesn’t see the other one aiming a gun at his back. A passer-by, Seung Kim, calls out a warning and Cap is able to dodge the bullet and hurl his shield, knocking the other crook out….

After losing the apartment, young Steve slept in a condemned building and worked any job he could, hauling refuse, washing cars, bagging groceries, walking dogs, and hawking papers. Once, a driver deliberately ran through a puddle, splashing Steve and soaking his newspapers. His pal Arnie Roth offered to buy the ruined papers but Steve refused. Arnie noted that the Daily Bugle’s headline announcing peace in Europe with the Munich Agreement is wrong as Hitler can’t be trusted. Anyway, Arnie has found Steve a place to live for only ten dollars a month but the landlord wants three months in advance. So Steve works even harder….

Steve approaches Seung Kim to thank him for his help  and discovers he’s an out-of-work builder who is now living in a van with his family. Steve offers him a job, doing renovations on his building….

So we jump back two years: arms dealer, blackmailer, and all-around nogoodnik Travis Lane is tramping through a South American jungle, escorted by a guide named Castillo. He is seeking immortality and has heard that Asmoday, one of the demonic Lords of Chaos has a temple in the jungle. Lane is willing to give anything to be immortal. Castillo explains that Asmoday moves through the world by inhabiting human bodies and Lane has been summoned. Castillo then reveals they are in the temple—and that he is Asmoday’s latest host before moving into Lane’s body to stop an upcoming nexus….

A month later, the possessed Lane met with Arianna Walters, fugitive A.I.M. scientist, in Bangkok and persuaded her to work for him (the exact offer is deliberately omitted here) in locating more former A.I.M. personnel….

Young Steve is hungry but he needs only 55 more cents to make the thirty dollars. A passer-by tells him that a group in the park is giving out free sandwiches and Steve goes over to find it’s true. He grabs some grub and discovers that the sponsoring group, preaching a glorious future for the USA is the German American Bund, in short, Nazis….




Jesus Saiz
Jesus Saiz
Matt Hollingsworth
Jesus Saiz (Cover Penciler)
Jesus Saiz (Cover Inker)
Jesus Saiz (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Joe Caramagna.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Human Torch
Human Torch

(Johnny Storm)
Invisible Woman
Invisible Woman

(Sue Storm)
Mr. Fantastic
Mr. Fantastic

(Reed Richards)
Thing
Thing

(Ben Grimm)

Plus: Arnie Roth, Psycho-Man.

> Captain America: Book info and issue index

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