Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Captain America: Steve Rogers #8 - Marvel Comics

Disappointingly dropping to the sixty-third best-selling title of December 2016, at least according to “Diamond Comic Distributors”, Issue Eight of “Captain America: Steve Rogers” must have come as a major disappointment to many of its presumably bewildered 38,610 fans. For whilst Nick Spencer’s script does at least provide some semblance of action-packed entertainment, in the guise of “the fourth Chitauri wave to hit us this month”, it’s narrative arguably would have made little sense whatsoever to those readers who hadn’t perused the twenty-two page periodical’s “opening crawl”.

Indeed, Avril Kincaid’s supposed importance to the titular character’s diabolical plans to spread Hydra’s ideals “throughout the world” had never really been hinted at before within this series, and yet the American author suddenly would have this title’s audience believe the S.H.I.E.L.D. agent is actually “central” to Cap’s covert plot for planetwide domination? Obviously someone “who was given the cosmic-powered Quasar gauntlets” is without doubt “one of the most powerful players on the board”, but why couldn’t the ‘Marvel exclusive’ writer overtly weave such a thread into the comic’s actual storyline rather than lazily include such a significant sub-plot into the text of the book’s foreword?

Equally as perplexing is just why Captain America is suddenly found on board the orbiting Alpha Flight Station supposedly waiting to have a meeting with Director Hill and Captain Marvel, when the tale’s previous instalment ended with the First Avenger literally revealing to Doctor Selvig he secretly held Baron Zemo captive within the Danish scientist’s laboratory? How does Rogers fighting an extremely tenacious extra-terrestrial invasion force in outer space logically follow such a sensational cliff-hanger? So remarkable a change in situation seems remarkably staged, and appears to have been penned simply to allow the contrived, rather talkative storyline a chance to include some ‘super-heroic’ fisticuffs, and subsequently provide Kincaid with a terrific opportunity to demonstrate just how omnipotent she is; “Yeah, but -- Whoa. She’s incredible. That kind of power --”

Eventually, all these unanswered questions and bizarre explanations even seem to get too much for S.H.I.E.L.D.’s former Cosmic Cube consultant himself, who towards the end of the comic exasperatingly exclaims “I don’t understand” when the Sentinel of Liberty fails to convince him that he was “off fighting monsters in space” simply to evaluate the Chitauri’s performance as a potential winnower “of an overpopulated world”. In fact, Erik’s open-mouthed incredulity at Steve’s claim that the alien insectoids’ attempted invasion of Earth is down to him and his possession of an alien queen, can only have been rivalled by the astonishment of this book’s audience at just such a statement…
The variant cover art of "CAPTAIN AMERICA: STEVE ROGERS" No. 8 by Mike Deodata

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