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  • Title: Captain America # 46
  • Publisher: Marvel Comics
  • Written By: Ed Brubaker
  • Art by: Steve Epting
  • Colors: Frank DArmata
  • Letters: VC’s Joe Caramagna
  • Cover Art: Steve Epting
  • Price: $2.99
  • Series:


"...all the action, intrigue and great characterization fans of Brubaker’s run have come to expect..."

By Chad Derdowski     January 30, 2009
Source: Mania

CAPTAIN AMERICA #46 (slideshow)
© Mania

A lot of folks seem all too willing to give Ed Brubaker a “get out of jail free” card in regards to everything Cap related. I’ll be the first to admit that the man has earned it: not only was he writing the best Captain America in years, he actually killed the guy and replaced him without missing a beat. And to top it all off, the book continued to get better! Regardless, I felt that the whole “Bucky is the new Cap and he’s fighting the Red Skull” storyline went on about one arc too long and was starting to get stale by the time he finally wrapped it up (though the ending was 110% awesome).

Then Ed followed it up with Batroc the Leaper and some Cold War-era Chinese scientists and… well, it started to slow down a bit. I was happy to see Bucky finally get past all that Red Skull stuff and get down to business as the new Captain America, but I have to admit that his first mission wasn’t really impressing me all that much. I’m happy to say that with the current issue, Cap is back on track! Captain America # 46 has all the action, intrigue and great characterization fans of Brubaker’s run have come to expect from him.

This issue finds the star-spangled hero teaming up with his old pal Namor to track down Professor Zhang Chin, a child prodigy that Cap (as the Winter Soldier) attempted to kill back in 1968. Professor Chin is all grown up now and he’s got the remains of the original Human Torch in his possession. He seemingly intends to turn the Torch into an unwitting slave. Being old friends with the Torch and knowing how much he valued his “humanity”, it’s easy to see why this mission is of such personal importance to both Cap and Namor.

Cover art to CAPTAIN AMERICA #46 by Steve Epting

I really enjoyed the way Brubaker handled the Namor/Bucky relationship in this issue. Namor was as smug as ever, begrudgingly admitting that “Rogers would be fine with it” in regards to Bucky assuming the role of Captain America and constantly second guessing Cap’s mental faculties. Despite the bad attitude, it was quite clear that the two men had a great deal of respect for each other. Well, it’s hard to say whether or not Namor really respects anyone, but it was clear that he didn’t hate Bucky, which is saying a lot for a guy like Namor.

Brubaker continues to write a damn fine Bucky/Captain America as well. Much like the original Cap, Bucky is continually reminded of his past mistakes. It seems that his life as the Winter Soldier will haunt him as long as he walks the earth, but it’s never overdone. You never get sick of hearing about it and he never seems like he’s whining. I guess that the mantle of Captain America isn’t just about honor, stars and stripes; it’s also about guilt. Lots and lots of guilt. Brubaker handles it nicely.

As far as the supporting cast goes, the Black Widow is also handled in a particularly awesome fashion in this issue. The manner in which she obtains information on Professor Chin from an M16 agent is fantastically badass and super-sexy at the same time.

As far as the art goes: While other artists fill in from time to time, and do an awesome job, this is Steve Epting’s book all the way. His pencils have become synonymous with the character and while you don’t always miss him when he’s away, you definitely take notice when he comes back. My only complaint with Epting’s art is that sometimes it seems too dark. I was going to blame the inker, but checking the credits revealed that Steve Epting is listed as “artist”, so I guess he’s doing his own inks as well. I understand the book is supposed to have a sense of realism and a harder edge, but sometimes there’s a bit too much shadow. I wouldn’t mind seeing more than ½ of a face once in a while. Oh well, it’s a minor complaint.

All-in-all, it was a great issue and it restored my slipping faith in Captain America and Ed Brubaker. I was glad to see it and I’m looking forward to the next issue – and at only $2.99, it’s a steal by Marvel standards!


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Superfist_home 1/30/2009 6:57:48 AM

 I dropped this book only a couple of issues ago. I might come back sometime down the road but I was just too bored at the end of the Red Skull storyline to keep going. I also thought that it went one arc too long but I was actually bored before then anyways.

vlomski 1/30/2009 12:32:43 PM





fft5305 1/30/2009 2:10:40 PM

"Remains of the original Human Torch"? Weren't they used to create The Vision? Or has that been retro-changed?

CalamityJohnson 1/30/2009 2:20:25 PM

vlomski, the capital letters and ridiculous ranting tells all us readers one thing: your opinion is worth the price of used #2 toilet paper... if you have an opinoin you'd like to share, do it the right way.

Marvel's best books currently are it's solo books: Captain America, Daredevil, and Iron Man. Matt Fraction and Ed Brubaker are carrying Marvel on their collective shoulders. I miss Bendis when he was on Daredevil. I wish he'd do a gritty solo book again. Guess his upcoming Spider-Woman book will give us that chance.

ChadDerdowski 1/30/2009 4:11:10 PM

I miss Bendis when he was on Powers... I guess that's a conversation for another time.  I'm looking forward to Spider-Woman too, but it better not be $3.99.

fft5305 ... yeah, they were used to create The Vision, but if memory serves (and it often does not), that got retconned when John Byrne was doing West Coast Avengers.  I remember an issue where the original Torch and The Vision shook hands in a graveyard or something.  It was during the era when Vision was all white and pasty.  Man, I hated that look. 

Anyway, I can't remember what the explanation was, but I'm sure it's changed several times since then.



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