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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Captain America Snuffs It

Yes, Marvel Comics has just released the latest and apparently last issue of Captain America (TM), in which the famous super-soldier finally sleeps the deep sleep at the end, after fatally slipping on a banana peel.

No, sorry, that's wrong. I briefly fell prey to classic comic instinct (unlike my last insipid little post, which on reflection reads like a collection of Reader's Digest selections). Actually [SPOILER WARNING] a hungry Captain America falls off a cliff whilst chasing a road runner.

No, no, that's not it either. [REAL, ACTUAL SPOILER WARNING] The man who has survived cryogenic freezing, poisonous Red Skull (TM) dust, and sharing the same cabana with the Incredible Hulk has fell prey to... a sniper's bullet. And they say comics are unbelievable!

Wanting to get some perspective on this tragedy, I called Marvel Comics, but they were all out of the office for the big Saudi Arabian DVD-release of The Fantastic Four (you haven't lived until you've seen Jessica Alba in a burqa). So, I called the person who probably best knew Steve "Captain America" Rogers, his sidekick and faithful manservant Bucky.


Earl Fando: Bucky, thanks for talking with me at what must be a difficult time.

Bucky: No problem, Earl. Hey, I'm not worried. If Jean Grey can rise from the dead two or three times, Steve'll be back inside a week.

Earl: I haven't seen the actual issue, as I haven't read comic books since my "dateless-nerd" days university, but the reports say he gets it from a sniper's bullet. Isn't that a bit, well... mundane?

Bucky: I thought so, too. Then, I thought, "This can't be just any old sniper. This guy must have some special stealth equipment, combined with the enhanced mutagenic ability to perfectly target superhero weaknesses."

Earl: Actually, I've heard he was just a teenage autograph-seeker with a grudge against Rogers, because he wouldn't sign his plastic, toy shield in the midst of a battle with Galactus. He was apparently armed with a snub-nosed revolver.

Bucky: Hey, give the Captain some kind of dignity to hold on to. Plus, that kid's still out there. I can sleep better at night thinking he's some kind of mutated assassin freak. I'm probably next.

Earl: Fair enough. Tell me, Bucky, what do you think the Captain's legacy will be remembered as?

Bucky: Well, he was a straight-shooter. The chicks digged the tights, and he was a mean poker player.

Earl: What about the legend of his intense patriotism and his unwavering committment to truth, justice, and the American way?

Bucky: You're thinking of Superman, Earl.

Earl: It sounded nice.

Bucky: Well, sure he was tireless, but you try getting a day job when your only suit is star-spangled and skin-tight.

Earl: Who do you expect to be at the memorial service?

Bucky: Oh, the usual gang of idiots.

Earl: That's MAD Magazine's catchphrase.

Bucky: Umm... the usual suspects: Nick Fury, crying out of that one good eye; Stan Lee, Thor, The Hulk, Wasp Woman, Spiderman, Iron Man, Iceman, Ant-Man, Nick Cage...

Earl: Surely you mean Luke Cage, the Power Man?

Bucky: No, no, Nicholas Cage. He's always wanted to play Steve in the upcoming movie. Let's see... Namor, The Thing, Wolverine, Spider-Woman, the Scarlet Witch, Storm, Shadowcat, the Red Skull...

Earl: The Red Skull??? I thought he was a villianous Nazi, sworn to the destruction of Captain America and all he stood for.

Bucky: Nah, that's just his role in the comic. In real life he's a Libertarian named Butch from Wisconsin.

Earl: Ah... How confusing. So, if the Red Skull isn't real, then is Captain America really dead?

Bucky: Don't confuse me. I saw the corpse. He wasn't that good of an actor.

Earl: Apparently not. Any final thoughts on what you'll miss most about him?

Bucky: He had a sweet motorbike. I'm betting that'll go straight to E-Bay, though.

Earl: I'll keep an eye out.

Bucky: You and me both, man... you and me both.

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