Is it too much to ask for a 65th anniversary special to be kind of, well, special? As in, a way to celebrate the history of a historical and important character in comics history? Maybe by presenting a story that’s an attempt to be iconic with the character, outside of current continuity, that celebrates what makes Captain America great? No? Too much to ask for? Well, if you feel that way, and your expectations are set low, you’ll probably enjoy this “Captain America 65th Anniversary Mediocrity.”
Basically, this issue is a team-up between Cap and Bucky and Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos. In it, Cap and his friends are sent on a mission to help some resistance fighters somewhere behind enemy lines in Germany. In doing so, they meet a cute girl that Bucky likes, fight the Red Skull and a way-too-sophisticated and easy-to-beat robot, and lay the clues for future battles. That’s pretty much it.
So as I implied, the problem really isn’t as much what this story is as what it isn’t. Your mileage may vary, but I wanted something more iconic, more interesting, more thoughtful and resonant than this very ordinary WWII adventure. Even the cover, depicting American fighting men throughout the history of the United States, implies something grander and more interesting than the comic actually delivered.
Pulido and Martin’s art is professional enough, but it really doesn’t fit the mood of the story either. Why have two cartoonists with animated styles illustrate a story that deserved a full Simon & Kirby treatment? The art isn’t bad or weak as much as it’s just kind of inappropriate to the story.
It feels like I’ve said the same thing about four or times in a row in this review. In a word, the Captain America 65th Anniversary Special is disappointing.