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Captain America #698 Review

Comic Books

Captain America #698 Review

Cap fights the good fight, but how can he when all he believes is gone?

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We’re two issues away from Captain America #700 and I couldn’t be more excited. Mark Waid and Chris Samnee have done a great job putting Cap’s good-hearted nature and Boy Scout heroics at the forefront. This issue kicks off a new story arc that aims to do that and a whole lot more.

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So what’s it about?

Read our preview.

Why does this matter?

This has not only been an exciting, well paced, well drawn series with Waid and Samnee at the helm, but it has also been quite fun. Each issue has served as a self-contained adventure and this issue starts the first of a more arc friendly story. That means a bigger, more complicated, and longer story.

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

Captain America #698 Review
Quit that racket!

This issue breaks your expectations into pieces and kicks off a story where anything can happen. Last issue Cap was frozen in ice and this issue opens in a very different time and place. I won’t spoil the surprise you and Cap face together, but let’s just say the creators have crafted a story that should put into question everything that Cap stands for. He’s been fighting the good fight for so long one assumes it will carry forward even when he’s gone. The world Cap wakes up to is anything but and it’s an interesting way of not only putting a new kind of threat in front of Cap but to also test his belief system. So far Waid and Samnee have shown us deep down Cap knows American people are good at heart, but this story may change that belief forever.

There’s plenty to read into if you’re interested in a story about social class. The rich have taken over and have gone as far as using Cap’s A to brandish themselves the victors while slapping Y and Z burned in brands on the poor and outcast. It’s a world where the rich have somehow taken over and nothing can stop them. If you’ve ever felt powerless as the government did and said whatever they wanted you’ll relate to this story.

Chris Samnee and Matthew Wilson put on a show here whether it’s pulse-pounding action or a dreary wash of color to convey just how far the world has fallen in the future. Wilson admirably adds pops of color in the good guys though their state is nothing to be bright about. Much of the environments are reduced to rubble and the color used is blood red which helps convey how bad it is for everyone in the world. Samnee is quite good at capturing the energy of every shield throw or punch Cap can throw. In one panel, for instance, Cap pushes a wall down on the enemy and you get the sense of weight and power required to knock those bricks down. The issue also ends on a hopeful note as Cap stands in a full page spread triumphant and fearless.

Captain America #698 Review
It kind of looks like he’s dancing out of the back of that truck.

It can’t be perfect can it?

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Given there’s a lot of exposition to get through to the reader by the end, it’s still a bit of a slow read nonetheless. Given how much is established one can forgive this, but it’s worth noting it’s not as breathlessly paced as previous issues.

Is It Good?

If you had doubts about how Marvel used this character last year you’ll be hooting and hollering reading this book. Captain America is back, and he’s more heroic than ever.

Captain America #698 Review
Captain America #698
Is it good?
Another excellent chapter in Waid and Samnee's run.
Cap has never had an adventure like this
Great fight scenes and use of color throughout
Interesting class issues weaved into the narrative
A slower paced issue

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