The Creators – Ta-Nehisi Coates – Writer, Leinil Francis Yu – Artist, Gerry Alanguilan – Inker, Sunny Gho – Colours, VC’s Joe Caramagna – Letters
The Players – Steve Rogers (Captain America), Sharon Carter, Bucky, Nuke, Thaddeus Ross
The Story – An old foe of the X-Men is rising in Russia as a force of evil, Hydra continues to think they are important, the Power Elite comes to light and Steve finds himself struggling as a man who is not fully trusted.
The Take – Captain America has always been a man out of time and thanks to more recent events where a version of himself became a Hydra dictator, he is now a man who is being left out in the cold. It is not something he is used to and Ta-Nehisi Coates, who comes on board as the new writer, slightly mirrors that story where Cap’s country once forsook him so he had to become The Captain. That was a long time ago though and now, despite his best intentions and continuing to fight for what is right whether American Dream or not, he has to try and win back the trust of those who lost it. Standing aside is not something that Steve Rogers is good with and with Hydra back in the mix, the Power Elite and a threat from the former USSR, he is now supposed to let others handle it, something he should do, but will not. Taking over the reins of this latest volume of Captain America is not only the aforementioned Coates, but Leinil Francis Yu as well, a team that is fresh to the title and thus, begin with a bit of a bang, creating something suspenseful and completely engrossing. Taking Cap’s place as the man out of time is Sharon Carter, prematurely aged by living in an alternate dimension and returning older than she would have liked while everyone else stayed the same. Steve still loves her and does not mind in the slightest – but she does and now given a chance to prove herself once again as her role in S.H.I.E.L.D. and S.H.I.E.L.D. itself no longer exists, she takes it without hesitation. In addition to some great character building by Coates who really seems to understand these characters through and through, he and Yu pack the book full of action, beginning with the threat of Nuke, or at least some of his clones, a surprise villain who has some big plans, a guest appearance from Bucky and a nice suspenseful cliff-hanger that will leave readers hanging by a thread, wanting the book to continue even though they have thirty long days to wait until the next issue, unless it turns out to be bi-weekly. Yu’s artwork is as fantastic as always, though not as heavy on the blacks as it normally is and makes for a nice change, making it look sharper and cleaner and a good look for the title. There might have been a little doubt as to how Coates would do on the book, but that has all been let go as he crafts an excellent tale that follows in the paths of Spencer and Brubaker before him, taking Captain America back into the world of espionage where he surprisingly fits best. With this first issue, Captain America is off to a great start and it looks to only get better from here.
Worth it? – Yes.