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Captain America/Black Panther: Flags of our Fathers #4: Review

Jul 2010
Reginald Hudlin, Denys Cowan

Story Name:

(No title given)

Review & Comments

3 stars

Captain America/Black Panther: Flags of our Fathers #4 Review by (July 16, 2010)
Review: A satisfying wrap-up to a solid, if not particularly significant miniseries. Wartime adventure? Captain America and the Black Panther? Sgt. Fury and the Howling Commandos? Red Skull and Master Man? It’s all good. The story had more than a few confusing spots, though. What is the geography of Wakanda? The capital and the mines were shown to be a long distance apart yet Gabe Jones at the mine walks down a tunnel and climbs a ladder and comes up in the palace; plus Warrior Woman, bashing heads in the capital suddenly shows up at the mine. When did the two locations move together? The strangest scene involved the Black Panther suddenly killing Master Man and Warrior Woman. This Panther turns out to be a guy called Azzuri. Who is he? Where did he come from? Why is there an alternate Black Panther? And then it isn’t clear how he kills the two villains: he appears to be pressing a caustic chemical into their faces. Then there’s the whole continuity problem: according to the characters’ history, Captain America should not have met MM and WW yet, and it’s already been revealed that they survived the War. So why are they dying here? These quibbles don’t really hurt an exciting story just raise questions in the mind of a comics geek.

Comments: The Black Panther is T’Chaka, father of T’Challa. The Queen suggests Gabe Jones would make a colorful partner for Cap, a subtle anticipation of the Falcon. Low point: this comic contains a (thankfully) rare sight of the Red Skull vomiting.

Captain America/Black Panther: Flags of our Fathers #4 Review by (July 4, 2011)
Captain America loses his triangular shield, but says the Government can give him another one. Gabe Jones takes a sample of vibranium as Sgt Fury told him to do, but then has an attack of conscience and tells Fury he hasn't got it. Cap gets the idea for a new round shield from the one Black Panther's using this issue. But this clashes with established continuity. Cap's new shield was only accidentally round, and needed vibranium to make it indestructible. The whole point of the earlier version of this story in BP(1998)#30 was to explain where the vibranium for the new shield came from, and in that version Panther gave Cap some. Fury tells his superiors that Cap needs a partner to do the dirty jobs he is unwilling to do. This leads to the modern idea of Bucky (from Ed Brubaker's run on Cap and the story in Wolverine: Origins #17-20) as someone the US Government provided to do just that. The previous issues have established that this series is set after the US has joined the war. Master Man and Warrior Woman getting killed would suggest it happens after all their appearances in the Invaders. But internally there is no clue whether Cap or Fury had met any of the villains before. On that basis Warrior Woman dying is not a problem. And the Armless Tiger Man is only subsequently seen after his death. But unfortunately Master Man has some appearances in modern Marvel. More worrying for me (because I'm a continuity geek) is siting this series late in the war (with Cap in the Invaders) while having Cap with his old shield and without Bucky. Moreover it seems to me that Cap is considered still a rookie in this story. I can't bring myself to accept it.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America/Black Panther: Flags of our Fathers #4 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

As Black Panther’s plane crashes into the mine where Master Man is wreaking havoc, Gabe Jones manages to flee down a tunnel just ahead of the resultant fireball. In a place of safety he discovers, and pockets, a small piece of Vibranium….

At the Nazi camp, Nick Fury and the Howling Commandos are barely able to withstand the attack of the Red Skull in his armored suit….

Climbing a ladder at the end of the tunnel, Gabe finds himself in the palace courtyard where Armless Tiger Man has the young prince T’Challa at his mercy. The unseen Gabe fires a shot hitting the villain in the forehead. As the Queen praises him for his talent, Captain America arrives to tell Gabe the Howlers are in trouble….

At the mine, the Panther (actually a warrior named Azzuri) leaps on Master Man, pressing a caustic substance into his face until he is dead. He is then assaulted by Warrior Woman, and gives her the same treatment….

Fury and the Howlers dodge the armored Red Skull by hiding among nearby trees and race back to the camp to enter the tent of Baron Strucker and try to take him hostage. The Skull appears, however, tearing apart the tent and opening fire with his machine guns….

En route to the Nazi camp, Black Panther offers Gabe citizenship in Wakanda as a reward for his honorable behavior. Gabe, remembering his stolen Vibranium, asks for time to think about it….

In the camp, as Fury is fighting Strucker in a hand-to-hand duel and the Red Skull is pursuing the other Howlers, the Skull suddenly pauses, gazing into the sky. Fury looks up to see…Captain America and the Black Panther dropping into combat. The two heroes engage with the armored villain, who withstands their attacks, even crushing Cap’s shield. Panther passes Cap his round wooden shield and Cap hurls it, piercing the circuitry on the front of the Skull’s armor, sending paralyzing shocks through him. Strucker surrenders and the Black Panther gives him a warning to take back to Hitler that any further Nazi encroachments on Wakanda will result in their invasion of Germany. Cap thanks the Panther for his help and says the native shield has given him an idea for his next one. As the Americans prepare to leave for home, Gabe tells the Panther he is declining the offer of citizenship, citing his loyalty to the United States; he also has an eerie feeling that the Panther knows about his stolen piece of Vibranium. On the flight home, Gabe tells Fury he was unsuccessful in obtaining a piece of Vibranium.

Back in the States, Fury reports to his superiors that Captain America is a superb fighting man but because of his unwillingness to betray his allies (the secret mission proposed in the previous issue) Cap should be teamed with a partner willing to do the dirty work. In the end both the Black Panther and Captain America (with a new round shield) think fondly of their new overseas friends.

Denys Cowan
Klaus Janson
Pete Pantazis
Denys Cowan (Cover Penciler)
Klaus Janson (Cover Inker)
Dean White (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Red Skull
Red Skull

(Johann Shmidt)

Plus: Armless Tiger Man, Baron Strucker, Black Panther (Sr.), Gabe Jones (Gabriel Jones), Howling Commandos, Master Man, Warrior Woman.

> Captain America/Black Panther: Flags of our Fathers: Book info and issue index

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