Growing up, Steve Rogers began showing promise. Dr. Fenhoff was impressed with the boy’s progress, and offered him the chance to be a mentor for some new recruits. But this did not sit well with some of his classmates. An American with asthma – all because that witch wanted him here. But they knew they could do something about it. After all, this is HYDRA. Only the strongest may survive.
In the present, the Red Skull’s power has begun rising in Sokovia. With the power of Charles Xavier’s mind – the influence of the Skull is spreading quickly. Selvig has a hard time believing that they could possibly stop him and co-opt HYDRA for its original purpose, but Rogers is trained to resist telepathic attacks, and he has an ace up his sleeve.
Sokovia descends into war over the Skull as HYDRA spreads through the country. The villain approaches a Sokovian leader with an offer. The Skull will pretend to falter, in an effort to lure the forces of SHIELD here. Abroad, the Skull does not yet posses enough power to overcome America. But here, on his front – HYRDA will trap their enemies and slay them. The Sokovian asks why he would do this, and the Skull answers that the man will get to live a little bit longer. Or, he could die now.
Meanwhile, Rogers and Black Widow stage a break out of an old Sokovian general. Cap wishes to use him in order to foster a more righteous person to fight for the Sokovian people. However, the forces of SHIELD aren’t so sure it will be so easy. But at least this general will give the West an excuse to work with somebody they can actually get behind.
Later, Selvig is unhappy about all of this. It’s too much. There are too many forces to play, and they can trust no one. Cap disagrees. He has an ally, somebody he can trust – and it’s time that Selvig meet him. In the past, Rogers was attacked by the bullies, who brutally beat him. Fortunately, Steve was saved by another boy. His name was Helmut Zemo.
Oh, boy, this issue… You know, we were on a decent roll with the Civil War II stuff. It wasn’t perfect, but it was fun seeing just how involved Rogers was in the whole thing. Now we’re apparently moving on… by dragging our feet. This is a pretty boring comic. It has some cool ideas, some phenomenal art, but when you get right down to it, aside from the ending, nothing really happens here.
There’s just a whole bunch of narration – like, way too much narration – a bunch of posturing, and… well, that’s it. This comic has some pretty heavy leanings politically, and, unlike the rest of the series, this is handled with about as much subtlety as a brick through a window. You know, I just wrote the review for All-Star Batman, which did also have political themes to it. But the difference between these two comics couldn’t be more apparent. I thought All-Star Batman handled it’s politics with a degree of grace and in a pretty thoughtful way overall. But Cap fields some really pretentious stuff here – it’s interesting, I suppose – in that it has a great deal to say about fascism, American foreign policy, and yes, Donald Trump, but it’s so on the nose that it doesn’t really do anybody any favours.
There’s nothing to learn here and I have a feeling this comic will annoy many readers, and perhaps rightfully so, for once. I don’t know what this comic is for other than to maybe let Nick Spencer rattle some cages and let off some of his own personal frustration over the election. I just didn’t enjoy this, myself. It felt preachy and obvious, but yeah, like I said, more than anything else, it’s boring. I want to like this comic. It does do clever things, like the subtle shift in colouring within the flashbacks from red in past comics to the green used here, signifying Rogers gradually accepting the world of HYDRA. But… we’re basically seeing this story unravel between a fascist fighting against a secret fascist, and I just want both these assholes to lose at this point. Who am I supposed to root for? Maria Hill and her crew? Her dialogue in this comic was terrible, by the way. It’s Just a weird mix of unfunny humour and more exposition.
It’s just more build-up, and that’s all this series has been. They are constantly saying how they are going to do things while very little is ever actually done. Literally the only thing of consequence that we didn’t know before was that Zemo is still in the picture. Meaning the big opening of this comic which basically threw down three big deaths has already been reverted back to zero. Again, boring. This story gets less interesting by the minute. And yeah, the idea of Cap and Zemo being buddy buddy is kind of interesting… on a planet where a hero and villain have never been forced to work together before.
Look, I know I’m coming pretty hard on this thing, but it’s because, on a second read, I realized how… mediocre this whole thing is. There’s just nothing to this thing. Probably because this is a soft reset for the comic. Yeah, as part of their relaunch thing, this comic even has a #1 and a #7 on it. You really seem to know what you’re doing Marvel, so I’ll just let you do your thing. But you aren’t getting a recommendation from me on this series anymore until you move this stupid story forward.