Captain America #16
“THE LEGEND OF STEVE” CONTINUES! The killing of a cop sets off a powder keg in the New York streets—one that Steve Rogers and Misty Knight must fight to contain! But an old foe with a new face is at the heart of this situation! How will justice be served?
As we delve deeper into the mysterious new Scourge, new power dynamics begin to arise. Wilson Fisk’s meeting with Lukin reveals how little power Fisk holds in and of himself—another leader propped up for an agenda not their own. The revelation that the police being killed are almost exclusively the ones provided by Lukin goes a step further to expose his precarious position. Misty later refers to a “rotting head” in reference to the Power Elite which, combined with the killing of Lukin’s foot soldiers, opens some interesting doors for exploration moving forward. There seems to be a concerted effort over the course of this arc to dispel the “face of evil” notion embedded in the figure of the villain and transfer that power and responsibility to the societies that enable them/create them—a narrative sure to cause some backlash among some sections of fandom.
Bob Quinn joins the artist carousel this issue. I wish I had the answer as to why this particular arc has been rotating artists as frequently as it has. It has certainly made the story less fluid but perhaps that is an intentional disruption? Either way, Quinn’s art in this issue is fine and I particularly liked his square-jawed John Walker/US Agent but it didn’t make or break the issue. Straightforward layouts, minor figure inconsistency, very nice background work, and of course fantastic coloring work by Milla.
Bringing John Walker into the narrative at this point is curious, speaking of the former Captain America. The fallout of Secret Empire continues to permeate the narrative as the American trust in Captain America remains broken, a notion that also plays into the idea of displaced responsibility mentioned above. Coates continues his slow examination of Captain America’s place in the 21st century socio-political landscape, and while at times it feels like Cap has no place here, there are other times where he feels like he could be the answer to many of our systemic problems if only he were viewed in a different way. Time will tell as this arc and series continue to unfold.
Captain America #16 (Coates, Quinn, Milla, Caramagna) continues to dissect Captain America’s place in the socio-political landscape of 21st century America.
Captain America #16: The Price of Power
Writing - 9/10
Storyline - 8.5/10
Art - 7.5/10
Color - 9/10
Cover Art - 10/10
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