It's Oscars time. Somebody wake the Grouch.

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.

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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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