The Original Captain America Is Coming Back

Illustration for article titled The Original Captain America Is Coming Back

Right now, there’s only one Captain America flying through the skies of Marvel’s mainline comic-book universe. But later this year, the original super-soldier will be back in the red-white-and-blue. And don’t worry about current shield-wielder Sam Wilson; he’ll sticking around. That’s right: two Caps at the same time.

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Tonight’s news coincided with a TV special on ABC celebrating the 75th anniversary of Captain America. The upcoming series will be titled Captain America: Steve Rogers and an interview on Marvel’s official site with writer Nick Spencer and artist Jesus Saiz states that the two Captain Americas will be operating independently of each other and pursuing different agendas:

It means we’ll have two Captain Americas. When Steve handed the shield to Sam, it didn’t come with any caveats. It’s his. Steve respects and admires what his old partner is doing, and wants him to carry on. There are enough problems out there, and enough bad guys, to keep both of them busy. They’ll have very different missions; Sam will continue fighting the battles no one else will go near, while Steve is faced with a resurgent threat from his past: Hydra is back, and stronger than ever.

For me, it’s great, because I get to tell two very different kinds of Captain America stories. If you’re liking what we’re doing in CAPTAIN AMERICA: SAM WILSON, with a more topical, of-the-moment take, we’ve got a lot more of that coming your way; but if you’re looking for that classic, timeless version, the one that’s steeped in the Greatest Generation with Cap fighting the face of true evil, now we’ve got that for you as well. I think they’ll complement each other nicely.

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Right now, I like this move for the reasons Spencer cites above. Sam isn’t getting kicked off a prestigious mantle; instead, Marvel editorial is apparently giving Spencer leeway to re-envision how two characters embody the role of Marvel’s foremost patriotic hero. There’ve been many storylines where two Captain Americas simultaneously existed but plots where one of them hasn’t been evil or time-shifted are rare.

Steve will be sporting both a new costume and a new shield, while Sam keeps the original circular weapon. More details about the changes are available at Marvel.com.


Contact the author at evan@kotaku.com.

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DISCUSSION

I really like Captain America, really like Steve Rogers as Captain America, but I’m kinda bummed by hearing this.

It’s not so much as to how it could overshadow Sam Wilson, I think what’s mentioned above shows that’s not to be an issue. It’s more, I want something new for Steve Rogers.

He’s one of the older heroes, and always ends up looping back into the Captain America role. I can’t help but love it as a fan, but it doesn’t need to be that. It doesn’t always need to do that. I don’t think we need Steve Rogers to be Captain America for all eternity.

Considering how long Marvel comics have been running, and how well Marvel are doing now, I don’t see him being absent from pop-culture. So why not really mix it up?

I’m the same with the Zelda franchise. Nintendo are going to keep making them, go wild, do something new. A female Link, a game as Zelda, a game as Ganon, go to a totally new place.

I also don’t buy into the “new IP” type of thing, which could apply to Steve Rogers, too. We don’t need a new character to walk that path Steve could take. Steve can walk that path, do something different. He doesn’t need to be in an eternal loop where he’s punching Hydra.

The way that Marvel separates the hero identity from the person, allows for more freedom to explore alternate ways to develop characters. The person is the character, not purely the hero. And they do try it, just it’s all too brief. Always.