13/06/2014

When captain America throws his mighty shield.



This will contain slight spoilers.

So while I said I would chew on Batfleck.. I will... but first I am going to nibble on Marvel´s cinematic Captain America.

When the first film was released I was worried, as a long time Marvel fan I kind of like cap´s real world origin as wartime mascot who was later re-invented for a post-war world. He has always been a bit over the top and in many way shares the same morals and values as DC´s Superman but with the added perk of being mostly human. He can be hurt by a thug with a baseball bat. Cap was always the moral core of the teams he was part of.
So what was I worried about, well for one I was worried they would cut out much of cap´s backstory. It is true we do not get much more than a brief glimpse of the life of Mr. Rogers before his transformation in to captain America but what we see is to me very endearing as it gives a very solid image of the person behind the shield and why he act the way he does once he get his powers. Now on the subject of power, there have been a slight upgrade to dear mr. Rogers traditionally have been raised to a level called peak human. In Marvel comics this is equal to near superhuman strength, agility and stamina and also genius level mental proves. But Captain America was never really superhuman. Of course over the years the tone of comics shifted and became more visceral, more violent and with this Rogers started to exhibit superhuman levels of endurance and damage resistance. This is something the movies pick up on and pushes a bit further. The Captain we se in the Marvel cinematic universe is very much superhuman, able to do thing no normal man would… Peak or not. In a way it makes my inner marvel puritan cringe. But at the same time this is more based on the Ultimate universe and if I recall correctly Cap is more superhuman in that universe so it is just a very minor nitpick.

Captain America: The first avenger.
I have a objection with that title… But seeing how much of a mess it would be to try and de-bone the whole relationship between Invaders, Defenders and well Avengers. But the short and long of it is that Cap had nothing to do with the Avengers until his re-boot in the comics. It is in fact the only person who will not in any way be a Avenger who should have that credit, Ant-man… Any way the first Cap movie is a nice origin story, pacing is a bit slow and it is more than a little corny at times but it fits the theme and to be honest I like the fact that Cap is used the same way the original character was used as a war mascot to boost morale and sell war bonds. It was also an understandable choice to make Bucky a grown man and not a pre-teen boy. It would have made for some really weird storytelling by modern standards and I have never been a big fan of kid sidekicks myself. It is also nice that the story remains in the past for most of the time saving the modern time for later movies.

Avengers
Not much to say about the Avengers… It is in my mind the best superhero movie to date. But one of my biggest fears going in to this movie was that they would forgo the traditional setup and pitch Iron Man as the leader due to RDJ´s popularity. I was glad to see that Captain America got to do what he does best, lead people. But as I said not much else to say.  It was nice to see Cap been given a sense of humor.
Winter Soldier
This movie is not really as much a Captain America story as it was a story featuring Captain America. But I still enjoyed it and again we get to see Rogers evolve some more, the scene with his old flame was in honesty heartbreaking. It makes so much sense and is a fairly uncommon way to go about it. Beyond that it is interesting to see Cap go through the whole motion as his world crumbles around him. In the Avengers I sort of got the idea that an alien invasion is so far beyond the reach of Steven Rogers that he simply did not really acknowledge it, he just treated them as another enemy. Here the impact is so much more close to the heart.

So I really like what they have done with Captain America in the cinematic universe. Much more so then what they did with Thor and to some extent Iron Man. It will be interesting to see what they have in store for the character in the coming movies.