The Comic Book Rack – The Return Of The Hero
It was bound to happen. Sooner or later, they would cave in. In this day and age of returning heroes and villains, literuary death is an illusion. Fans, at first, clamoured for his return and once the new hero was established and the status quo changed, the rug gets pulled from under our feet and lo’ and behold….
Steve Rogers is reborn.
For those who don’t immediately recognize the government name of our illustrious hero, you will surely recognize his alter ego:
What was that? His death was announced in all the major newspapers. It was announced with great sadness on our local news broadcast and Brian Williams even reported it. More importantly, Stephen Colbert has his shield! And now he’s coming back?
And this surprises you how?
Comic fans are laughing their posteriours off right now. For you, Joe and Jill Public, this must all seem, well, unreal. Well guess what? It’s a freakin’ comic book. The original soap opera and of course it isn’t real. I mean, really – when have you seen a male supermodel running around in a uniform based on the American Flag with an indestructible shield fighting crime in urban American and leading our troops to victory in any war? Of course it isn’t real. But in many ways it is. Because Marvel Comics beat their number one competitor, DC Comics to the proverbial punch:
They jumped on the Obama wagon.
Huh? The Obama Wagon? What’s that?
That is when you embrace the tenants of our esteemed president. And his number one theme for this country is the one that really got him elected to the highest office in the land:
The Living Legend of World War II, encased in the frozen sea in a block of ice, found after forty years of suspended animation, revived by the Mighty Avengers and has championed all that is right and good with this country is making his return. While all of this is his origin, the one thing that was and is and always will be the most important aspect of Captain America is that he is the living embodiment of hope.
There is no such thing as surrender when it comes to Steve Rogers. He had no “quit” mode. So when Marvel had him essentially lay down in front of the world, it was the end of an era. There was no other way out but to kill him. Hope had been eviserated so, of course, the living embodiment of hope had to be put to death. It was akin to taking Old Yeller out back and blowing his brains out.
Ahhh, but you forgot what we talked about, didn’t you? This, my friend, is a comic book. And natural law does not apply in the literal sense. Hence, when Barack Obama rode the Hope gravy train all the way to the Presidency, Marvel saw it’s “out” clause. The man who embodies hope in the United States of America has inspired the return of the man who did the same for Marvel and comic fans everywhere.
The details aren’t important. Just know Steve’s in good hands: namely writer Ed Brubaker’s mind and pen to paper. At least Marvel didn’t hand the job over to a hack. Mr. Brubaker has taken the comic, “Captain America” and made it one of those “must have” books you hear so mcuh about. In this day and age of almost universal Attention Deficit Disorder, Mr. Brubaker is a master of skill of prose and detail.
Welcome back, Cap. You were missed.