The decision made last year by Marvel Comics to have Captain America turn out to have been a Hydra agent throughout his entire career is controversial, to say the least. But given the frequency with which such changes get reversed – remember that Superman came back from the dead – is it possible that Captain America will soon be redeemed as well?
After all, the character of Captain America has stood for everything American since his inception, from fighting Nazis in the 40s to smashing communists in the 50s. Learning that he is tied to Hydra – which in the Marvel universe was directly linked to Nazi Germany – was a real body blow for his fans. And as noted by Nerdist, they made their displeasure known to Marvel Comics.
It was hard for Marvel comic book readers to accept that the man who socked Hitler in the jaw could really be a Hydra agent. It had to be a trick, like that dream where Bobby Ewing seemed to die on Dallas, only to be alive again once his wife woke up and found him in the shower.
Even the guy who plays Captain America in the Marvel movies was a bit shocked by this strange turn of events with his favorite superhero. Chris Evans quickly posted, “Hydra?!?!? #sayitaintso” on Twitter after he heard about this stunning plot twist in the comics.
On the other hand, Stan Lee himself seems to approve:
It’s a hell of a clever idea; I don’t know that I would ever have thought of it for him to be a double agent, but it’s going to make you curious, it’s going to make you want to read the books, they’ll probably do a movie based on it, so I can’t fault it; it’s a good idea. I think it’s crazy, but it’s a good idea.
According to Polygon, writer Nick Spencer – the man behind this huge change – isn’t indicating any plans to change direction any time soon. In fact, Marvel seems to be laying out a long-term plot in which Captain America will be continuing to spin his nefarious web.
And the alarming decision of Captain America in the latest issue to straight up murder someone was a little off putting as well. Yes, it was the Red Skull – or at least his clone –and it’s hard to think of someone who deserved it more, but it still didn’t seem like very Captainy behavior.
Some people have apparently attempted to tie the political events of 2016 to the new Captain America story line. While there might seem to be some convergences, the fact is that the company editor and chief Axel Alonso has denied that’s what was intended. Instead, he suggests:
This is Hydra taking over, this is bad guys taking over, and this is the Marvel Universe facing this and looking at [the] hero they trust most and saying, how could he have done this?
Alonso went on to point out how he wanted readers to see the new direction they were taking with Captain America:
One of the things we want readers asking is not just how are they gonna defeat this evil, but what’s the Cap story in this? How is it possible for there to be a redemptive arc for Cap? Is that Marvel’s intention? That’s what we’re looking at for the next months.
Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that comics these days are desperate to make sales, which means changes like this are often done just for their shock value. The heyday of comics is long past –despite how it might seem with all the superhero movies hitting the screens.
But rest assured, at some point in the near future, this will all change again and Captain America will be back to his old self and none the worse for wear. It’s as inevitable as Marvel’s upcoming sales report.
[Featured Image by Marvel Film]