Sunday, 14 January 2018

Captain America: Steve Rogers #14 - Marvel Comics

A highly illogical plot, as well as an over-reliance upon his 31,592-strong readership perusing this title’s pre-story summary of events in order to simply keep up with the narrative, are just two of the problems with Nick Spencer’s script for Issue Fourteen of “Captain America: Steve Rogers”, and that’s before anyone has arguably even turned more than a page or two. Indeed, it’s wholly apparent from the very start of this comic just why the book’s popularity tumbled by eight thousand copies with its 1944 flashback of the First Avenger irrationally attacking a squad of Hydra guards in order for him to try and cold-bloodedly murder his mentor Elisa Sinclair.

This entire sequence seemingly makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, as it’s based upon the premise that despite identifying, recruiting and protecting the fascist organization’s greatest super-soldier asset, the high-ranking official would allow her protégé’s best friend to sit in an allied prison cell and his father, a man Rogers “greatly admired”, be killed by Bucky Barnes. This bizarre scenario becomes even more unbelievable when an angry Winghead discovers that his so-called traitor is actually an all-powerful sorceress who can suddenly transform herself into a truly formidable-looking multi-tentacled siren who instantly overpowers the ‘hero’; I drank the blood of my enemies firstborn with the ancient kings and felt the stars fall…” 

Equally as bizarre, is the Living Legend’s belief that Agent Kincaid can bring down the Earth’s planetary defence shield using Quasar’s Quantum bands, when a multitude of the Marvel Universe’s “big guns” can’t do it with a concerted team effort. Admittedly, the S.H.I.E.L.D. operative’s power stems from “the offspring of Eternity and Infinity and the Celestial Axis”, but when the likes of Thor, Photon, Hyperion and Star Brand united can barely dent the protective force-field, just what chance does a lone rookie hero have..? The director’s back-up plan to have Rick Jones sabotage the shield’s cybersecurity seems far more likely to work surely..? 

Sadly, the artwork of Jesus Saiz is also bitterly dissatisfying throughout much of this twenty-one page periodical. The Spanish penciller’s flashback scenes, despite the majority of them being somewhat sedentary in nature, are well-handled enough, especially when Sinclair manifests her multi-suckered appendages and ensorcels the titular character. Yet, every time the storyline returns to the present, and focuses upon either Madame Hydra’s recruitment drive or Captain Marvel’s machinations there’s a noticeable decline in the illustrator’s drawings, and some of his storyboards, such as Colonel Danvers team testing out the planet’s shield, don’t quite seem to gel.
Writer: Nick Spencer, Artists: Jesus Saiz, and Color Artist: Rachelle Rosenberg

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