Captain America, Captain of Nothing was written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, with art by Adam Kubert. The colours are by Frank Martin and Matt Milla, and letters by VC’s Joe Caramanga. The volume collects issues #7-12 of the current Captain America run.
What do you need to have read?
The first issues of this run have are collected in Captain America, Vol. 1: Winter in America, which I have reviewed.
What do you need to know?
Previously HYDRA took control of the USA using doppelgänger of Steve. Although HYDRA was toppled, with doppelgänger-Steve now in prison, our Steve is struggling with the lingering distrust of the public. In the previous volume, Alexa and Alexander Lukin were up to no good. Steve has now framed for the murder of Thunderbolt Ross.
First of all, I was not a fan of the plot of this book in the slightest. What happens in this book? Essentially Steve Rogers ends up in a high-security prison and ends up escaping. Of course, there is more to the story than that, but that is the bare bones of the thing. The whole book feels like filler for the series, and full of posturing rather than a real story. Despite plenty of changes, both with Steve and with Sharon who is working to free him from the outside, there is something static about this story that lacks in any excitement. I feel like I’ve seen this sort of story where Steve is arrested for something he hasn’t done before, so it doesn’t feel fresh in the slightest.
I love the larger themes of this run. They were established in the previous book and I enjoyed the way that they’re beginning to be explored. I want to see Steve struggle to differentiate himself from Captain America. I want to see what it means to be Captain America, and embody those traditional values, in modern America, and how these ideologies work with one another. However, the themes do not seem to work with the plot, and there is a disconnect between the two. It feels like there are two writers, one who is writing the plot-driven pages and one who is writing the discussion scenes. Annoying, as with the previous issue, the dialogue is still a little clunky in parts.
The art is inconsistent in a way which I do not like. The close-up images are decent, but the other shots, such as a room with multiple people, seems rushed and unappealing to the eye. It is clear that the art is there to do a job and it does that and nothing more.
Overall this was a very disappointing read. While I gave the previous issue three stars, this issue only got ⭐️⭐️ out of a possible five stars. I love the core themes but the execution is really lacking, to the point that I’m not sure I’ll be reading the next volume.
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