Wait, but Steve Rogers is the one and only Captain America, right? Nope! Captain America may have cemented his place in history with a first issue appearance that involved his fist getting diplomatic on Adolf Hitler’s face, but there have been plenty of other Vibranium shield-bearers in the past. World War 2 heroes such as The Spirit of ‘76 and the Patriot filled in for Rogers when he took an extreme ice bath, as did a psychotic communist hunter and an idealistic fan who may have gone on a killing spree when pushed too far.
Since then, Captain America’s identity has also been assumed by the Winter Soldier, while former Falcon Sam Wilson is the latest hero to be trusted with Captain America’s mission and shield. Yep, that costume has changed more hands than a bootleg DVD of the latest Star Wars film. There’s a good reason why Steve Rogers is out of action yet again: He’s too damn old.
Following comic book events that left his super-soldier serum depleted from his body and his Clint Eastwood mutant Inhuman gene active, Rogers had to hand his identity over to a more capable hero. And that person was Sam Wilson. Wilson is an interesting character, a capable Captain America who has his own ideals and goals when it comes to protecting the US of A.
But he’ll be slipping into the tightest of spandex soon enough, as Steve Rogers is returning to star-spangled action. The new series will be called Captain America: Steve Rogers, with current Captain America: Sam Wilson writer Nick Spencer scribing it up and Jesus Saiz on art duties. Don’t count Wilson out though. He’ll still be operating as Captain America as well, with both patriotic Avengers pursuing different agendas. As Spencer explained on Marvel.com:
It means we’ll have two Captain Americas. When Steve handed the shield to Sam, it didn’t come with any caveats. It’s his. Steve respects and admires what his old partner is doing, and wants him to carry on. There are enough problems out there, and enough bad guys, to keep both of them busy. They’ll have very different missions; Sam will continue fighting the battles no one else will go near, while Steve is faced with a resurgent threat from his past: Hydra is back, and stronger than ever.
For me, it’s great, because I get to tell two very different kinds of Captain America stories. If you’re liking what we’re doing in CAPTAIN AMERICA: SAM WILSON, with a more topical, of-the-moment take, we’ve got a lot more of that coming your way; but if you’re looking for that classic, timeless version, the one that’s steeped in the Greatest Generation with Cap fighting the face of true evil, now we’ve got that for you as well. I think they’ll complement each other nicely.
And that’s an interesting parallel of watching two patriots tackle different threats with different methods and goals in mind. Rogers will have a new shield, inspired by his original World War 2 kit that can houses pointy-stabby bits and the ability to split into two smaller shields. I’m not too crazy about his new costume however. He looks like an Aquafresh toothpaste mascot that has gone rogue.
Last Updated: January 20, 2016