ALL-NEW CAPTAIN AMERICA #1 Review & Spoilers
“untitled” (22 pages)
Story by: Rick Remender
Pencils by: Stuart Immonen
Inks by: Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors by: Marte Gracia w/ Eduardo Navarro
Letters by: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Covers by: Immonen, Von Grawbadger & Gracia; Paul Pope; Alex Ross; Sara Pichelli & Laura Martin; Kris Anka
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Editor’s note: The recap page on the above right gets up caught on all you need to know before you dive into this debut issue!
Three cheers for the red, white and blue!! Falcon is gliding the colors anew!
A brief glimpse into Sam Wilson’s past reminding himself as well as readers of his loss leads to high-flying action requiring a two-page spread. Sam is the new embodiment of the American Dream — bold, brave and all-business. Sam thinks back to the loss he suffered with the death of his parents one year apart when he was a teen.
Into the lion’s Hydra’s den Sam goes accompanied by his fair-feather friend Redwing!! It’s been forever since I’ve seen his right-hand man bird. FalCap is communicating with Steve. The mission is a simple one. Yeah, right! Falcon/Cap (get off my back, I know he’s Cap now) has to retrieve an informant and blow up the base without direct contact. I chuckled upon hearing the ‘no frills’ directive especially when it’s obvious that that’s not gonna happen and Steve utters: “Are you having frills?” Witty dialogue at its best. There’s a two-panel acknowledgement of former players Steve and Sharon for us more seasoned readers. What better way to kill the time than fishing? Sharon imparts to Steve five words of wisdom: “Let Sam be Captain America.” I raise my shield to that, sister!!
Remender wastes no time in establishing Sam as the veteran fighter that he is. He moves so quickly and effortlessly as the new Captain America. Even with the newer costume, Sam moves exactly like the shield-slinger should. The choreography is captivating. Sam retracts his wings to maneuver better. The way he back-flips and flings the shield is AWE-SOME!! This is Captain America at its finest no matter who is really underneath.
I will say right now that I’m absolutely gushing over Sam. His new status befits him like the red gloves that he dons. He is more impressive given the fact that he has kept his wings. There’s no stopping this all-new all-different Cap. Here’s an opponent who can move on land and air. That’s a hard act to follow!! I had a little nerdgasm when Sam calls the shield “my new friend“. Why the hell not? For reasons too numerous to mention, he’s more than worthy to carry that shield and boy, is he ever adept!
Sam cannot be caught. Despite a Hydra agent pursuing him on his sky-cycle, he can’t seem to find the brightly-garbed Avian Avenger. It’s super-cool that Sam sees through Redwing’s eyes. There’s a shot of Redwing focusing on the agent that allows Sam to surprise-attack him. This falcon (Redwing) isn’t some two-bit sidekick. He and Sam go hand-in-hand wing-to-wing. The Hydra agent would rather plummet to his doom by breaking himself free but Sam prevents that. The agent mocks Sam for losing his shield in the process until Redwing fetches it for him. Redwing is his brother.
Sam narrates the majority of the story. I love his snarky remarks. It’s almost like he’s breaking the fourth wall by critiquing some comic-book clichés like: “Was wondering when we’d hit the evil tower of looming dread.” Emblazoned on the tower is a major Hydra symbol. A new sense of wonder emanates from Sam — he wonders how he ever got by without a shield.
The mysterious Big Bad tells the lackeys to hurry with the blood (that obviously has some importance) while he deals with the charlatan Cap. Rudeness!!! Sam is fantastic as Cap but looks like he’s already had one screw-up: upon throwing the shield he misses completely =-0 Horror of horrors! There’s even an agent who’s bold enough to insult Sam. He becomes even bolder when he grabs the beloved shield and instructs Sam on how to throw. Surprise, surprise!! The agent throws it at the other minions knocking them down. He tells Sam that there’s a special centre of gravity to it and that’s it all in the wrist. This agent turns out to be none other than Ian Zola a.k.a. the new Nomad!! Sam points out that Ian has an unfair advantage having grown up in Dimension Z with the shield as a natural extension of him. Ian can’t help but mention he should’ve been Steve’s successor. Sam retorts with “Cronyism beats nepotism” whereas Ian gets the last word, “Age beats talent.”
The mission at hand finally unfolds. The duo must retrieve a doomsday weapon kid from Hydra’s evil tentacles. The Big Bad is revealed to be Batroc, the Leaper!! *snort* Even to this day, despite attempts to make him be more badass and look cooler, I still envision him as a bumbling buffoon who on occasion got some good shots against Cap. It’s a whole new ballgame now. Batroc has a new look. UUHH, I’d be worried about copyright infringement because he sure looks a hell of lot like an Emerald Archer from the Distinguished Competition’s comic and TV universes. Ever the cultured one, Batroc asks if the twosome would like to partake in some croquembouche. How nice to offer before the sparring begins.
The next five pages highlight the battle with Batroc. Things are different here. Batroc seems more vehement and aggressive. He spews a lot of anti-American rhetoric towards Sam. (1) He implies that Sam has diabetes given that he’s an American burger eater. (2) He ponders what the modern Cap’s super-powers are like: war-mongering or omega-illiteracy. (3) He deflects his own murderous mercenary nature by mentioning sarcastically the POTUS. (4) He uses the slang term “slum it” to describe his elite status and (5) he finds fighting sidekicks beneath his pay grade. This is a whole side of Batroc unseen!! Using slang and referring to himself in the third person? Plus, he really gives Nomad and Sam a run for his money. The battle ends quite bloodily as Batroc takes a knife and slashes Sam across the face. NNNOOO!! Dirty trick! Cheap move! Bastard! Nomad comes in and punches Batroc into the abyss. Sam is outraged at the deed but Ian assures him that he did the right thing and wants to be spared of the platitudes.
The mission ain’t over yet. What happened to the kid?!? Whoever he is, his blood is so valuable that Hydra had to put their wiry hands all over him. A bit of hilarity ensues when the three enter the elevator with a panel covered in letters. Sam yells for Ian to press any button. Today’s episode of ALL-NEW CAP is brought to you by the letter ‘B’. B for Basement? BRNGG? BOOM? Sam muses for the second time how he survived his entire crime-fighting career without a shield. They’re not out of the woods yet. They escaped an Uzi but just as they gather their wits, standing over them is a batch of baddies: Baron Zemo, Cobra, Taskmaster, Sin/Red Skull II, Armadillo, Madam Hydra, Baron Blood, and Crossbones!!! You bet your booty that this is to be continued!!
It’s a real delight to see that the same creative team carries over to a ‘new’, re-launched, or re-titled book. This makes the transition a lot smoother and more natural. Also, it’s a logical continuation/extension of the previous run. I’ve mentioned before that I haven’t been a fan of Rick Remender’s writing of late but he really has Sam’s voice. I’m beyond impressed with how flawless the new Cap turns out. Through Sam’s inner thoughts, Rick is expressing his love and admiration not just for Captain America as an ideology but for Sam Wilson, a 45-year-old character who has rightly been elevated to the super-star status deserving of him. The plot is fast-paced but with much merit. I love the humour sprinkled on the more serious situations. The main players each get in one zinger at least.
Stuart Immonen’s pencils are just like the action: fast, furious, and frivolous!! He’s an ace at making this Captain America fly (literally and figuratively). Over, under, sideways, and right-side-up. One can’t help but look in awe and keep turning the pages. I imagined myself zooming about, undeterred by the henchmen. Stuart’s best illustrations are the two-page spread of Sam on pages 2 and 3, and Redwing’s eyes on page 7, panel 3.
Wade Von Grawbadger compliments Immonen’s pencils beautifully. The contrast of dark and bright is applied well.
Marte Gracia is joined by a different collaborator this time around: Eduardo Navarro. The two know their way around the spectrum. Red seems to be the colour du jour. They made a beautiful sunburst effect on the two-page spread as Sam descends into darkness.
Joe Caramagna coolly crafts the script. Whether it’s bold, italics or sans serif, everything is beautifully clear to read. I always like to give a nod to onomatopoeia. Comics just wouldn’t be the same without them. The three coolest effects are KRASHH on page 10, RHOOOOOOSH on page 20, and KRADROOM on page 21. High-flying action = lots of loudness.
In honour of the new Cap, I give this book 45 out of 50 stars (90%). Let’s all salute Sam Wilson!
Subtle humour: BOOM?
The agent who face is scanned to gain access to the base is Bob Dabalina. Could this be Agent Bob of Hydra that used to kick it with Deadpool??
This also makes me think of “Mistadobalina” by Del the Funkee Homosapien.
Colour our world:
The recap page has the expected red, white, and blue along with a smidgen of yellow. Guess why?
Tags: all-new captain america, Avengers, Avengers Now, Captain America, Captain America & The Mighty Avengers, Marvel, Marvel NOW! (All-New Marvel Now!)