Spoiler Review: Captain America #42

Usually, I post the Captain America reviews the day a new issue releases, sometimes literally hours after it hits on the West Coast. But yesterday, after I finished the final part of “The Death of Captain America” epic, I kind of didn’t feel like writing anything. I didn’t want to say anything too negative about it. To say I was disappointed with the ending doesn’t come close to describing my feelings on the matter. So, I thought it best to wait and let the events of #42 sink in before putting anything to paper. Now, it’s been almost a day, and I think enough time has passed that I can finally throw down an objective review of this book. Or, I can at least try really super extra hard.

Alright, so many extraordinary/awesome/hilarious/spectacular moments this issue!!! Let’s run ‘em down!!!

The book opens with… Bucky doing what Captain America should be doing. Great, great, and great.

More zany dialogue between Zola and Red Skull.

Is that my baby? (Seriously, what the hell is she talking about?)

Sharon Carter summons the strength of ten Amazons to break free!

You’re a genius, Zola!

BLAM. You’re dead, dude.

Um… Crazy Cap freaks out! Murders Nazi-Bot!

Bucky blocks an RPG with his… SHIELD?!? WHOA. If that doesn’t make you Captain America, I don’t know what will.

Bucky takes the media stage as Captain America. Finally.

I’ll take care of Sharon, Steve would have wanted it that way… this, to me, is the start of the Sam/Sharon love affair. I feel like Brubaker has been hinting at this for years. No, I’m not crazy. The clues are there, people!!!

Bucky and Natasha… happy endings!!!

This isn’t my America…

Red Skull stuck?

Okay first, to the matter of the Red Skull’s fate. Is he stuck in that body for good, or will Zola show up soon to help him out of it? Ambiguous much?!? Yes, but a little logic will see us through. I believe that the Red Skull is indeed stuck in that robot body for the foreseeable future, and here’s why: Arnim Zola is truly dead (as dead as one can be in comics). Wait, you say? Doesn’t Zola always do that thing where he can jump into another robot body? What stopped him from doing that this time? Well, a very simple thing. Time. He didn’t have the time to transfer bodies. The “Crazy” Captain America got the drop on him, so Zola didn’t have the time to initiate the transfer… as established in an earlier issue (#38), Zola needs to manually initiate his transfers. So, Zola being dead means that there is no one to transfer the Red Skull’s consciousness out of his robot placeholder. Hence, the Red Skull is screwed in the most literal sense of the word.

…but what about Zola appearing on all those monitors at the end, talking to the Skull? A recording, obviously.

Now, here’s what upset me about this otherwise exciting and awesome issue: The “Lost” Syndrome. Seriously, it’s been almost two years since Cap died and over two years since the Red Skull’s plan was put into place… where the #### are my answers? Where the #### is the ####ing resolution? What was he trying to do with that time machine? Seriously!?! What the ###??? The issue was totally still a fun and well written read, and of course the art was amazing, but #### man, give us some answers Brubaker!!! And another thing, if this issue hadn’t been billed as the ultimate chapter in the “Death of Captain America” saga, I don’t think I would be as upset as I am right now. The quality of this comic ranks up there with the best issue of this series, but it’s the hype that kills it.

I’ve resigned myself to the obvious fact that Steve Rogers likely won’t make his return for another 20-30 issues, or near the end of Brubaker’s run. That’s fine. I can deal with that. It’s the biggest payoff of the series and it’s only right that it comes near or at the end. But at this point, halfway through (supposedly), it’s time for Brubaker to start answering some of those questions he’s posed over the last 41 issues. It’s ####ing time, man. Give us something! Anything! Don’t “Lost” us. Tell me about the baby! Tell me what that damn time machine was supposed to do! Tell me what the Skull’s endgame was!!! Seriously, if you wait too much longer, your loyal readers will stop caring. Sure, that will never happen to me, because I’m crazy, but not everyone is like me. Not every Cap reader has a Captain America shrine in their room.

BLAH. I hate being a fanboy, but sometimes it can’t be helped.

All bitching aside, I’m glad this chapter of the story is over and although it wasn’t completely satisfying I’m very much looking forward to the further adventures of Bucky Barnes as Captain America. Something tells me Brubaker has only just scracthed “the surface of awesome.”

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