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Month of Cool Avengers/X-Men Comic Book Moments – Captain America Makes His Silver Age Debut

All month long we will feature brand-new Cool Avengers and X-Men Comic Book Moments in celebration of their fiftieth anniversaries this month. Here is an archive of all the past cool comic moments that I’ve featured so far over the years.

Today we look at Captain America making his Silver Age debut in Avengers #4 by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and George Roussos…

The issue opens with that rascal Namor throwing a block of ice that a bunch of Inuits were worshipping into the ocean. As it turns out, that block of ice contained Captain America, suspended in animation!

As the ice melts, the Avengers’ submarine (they were in the area tracking Namor) comes across Cap and then we get one of the most awesome re-introductions you’ll ever see…

How much of a stunning example of Captain America’s coolness is that? He wakes up twenty years in the future and he basically just has a quick freak out and then he pulls a Fonzie and suddenly he’s totally calm.

Then, for good measure, he’s like, “Hey, bunch of powerful looking folks I just met, I bet I can kick all of your asses.” And then he pretty much DOES JUST THAT!

That “try to conquer me” panel is just a stunning display by Kirby. So much casual awesomeness there.

It’s three pages and Captain America has already solidified himself as an awesome addition to the team. What a great story by Lee, Kirby and Roussos! As for THE moment, I dunno…I am partial to the “try to conquer me” panel, but I can see the “Who am I?” sequence of panels as being “the” moment, as well.

18 Comments

I always thought the shot of him with his army uniform in tatters was a great one.

Captain America would be so much more interesting a character without the Patriotic trappings. They always hurt my suspension of disbelief.

They ask why he hasn’t aged, but they just thawed him out of ice. They could find that strange…. but considering the group, that’d be pretty hypocritical.

“Captain America would be so much more interesting if he weren’t Captain America.” Yeah, great idea there.

I just finished reading What If…? #s 28 & 29, and they had an awesome twist on the whole thawing Captain America out of ice thing. I was shocked at the end of 28 when Captain America was a Nazi president, but, thankfully, the writer redeemed himself by making that evil Cap’ a clone and showing the other Avenger’s finding the real Captain America in ice. So cool! (hahah, “cool”… that was a pun…..)

I’ve got them listed on my eBay page if you want to get them:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/cobys_comics/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_from=&_ipg=25&_trksid=p3686

I like how Cap was ultimately defeated by 1940s chivalry there.

@Michael P: I realize you are being sarcastical, but I mean it. The association with patriotic values is by far the weakest aspect of the character. As can only be expected.

Luis, don’t mistake Patriotism for moronic Jingoism. It’s corny these days to wear the flag, I guess, but why should a man not love his country openly? I guess it don’t really work for people in other countries, but whatever. He can stay a favorite for us.

nice for was wondering when this moment would show up . as for them asking why he hasn’t aged proved that the avengers were a little dumb for the answer is obvious cap did not age due to being in the ice.

They didn’t find him frozen in ice. Look at the panel of him floating by. No ice.

Now there have always been a few things in this sequence that bothered me. Like the speech balloon telling Iron Man to stop points at Iron Man. Giant Man opening the hatch and reaching outside while speaking without getting wet. But being puzzled by what they found floating in the ocean this early in their careers, no.

I always wondered who the human opponents Cap fought in WW2 were that were taller than Giant Man.

A tiny note: “Inuit” is the plural of “Inuk.” There’s no such word as “Inuits.”

Actually the androids Zemo used against him in their last battle (albeit this was a retcon in a later Avengers) were certainly as large or larger.

I was going to say that at least there was no “obligatory introductory fight over some lame misunderstanding” until I got to the panel where the Avengers begin to question him. Even worse, Iron Man downright threatens Cap with bodily harm, which would be par for the course when it comes to their “friendship” over the ensuing decades.

Still, it’s nice to see that Cap has kept his cool going back to his Silver Age re-introduction. What a guy.

Luis Dantas:”The association with patriotic values is by far the weakest aspect of the character. As can only be expected.”

I disagree. Steve Rogers’ status as a patriotic symbol is what makes him interesting. Remove that, and you destroy the character.

I remember first reading this in Fantastic Firsts. The moment is definitely when he puts on the mask and declares himself Captain America. It’s also the panel background used on the Cap Returns introduction page by Mark Gruenwald. To quote the intro page: “Even if you had never heard of Captain America before, you could tell that this was the stuff of legends…”

Mike Blake: okay, technically he was not in ice, but those were freezing waters and they say he’s frozen solid….

I mean, you have the Norse God of Thunder, a mechanical millionaire, and a shrinking socialite with bug wings. Kicking this guy’s ass for waking up and claiming to be a celebrity lost for 20 years is a strange course of action.

That panel where Cap just smashes through Stark, Pym, and Thor at the same time was pretty epic.

GG Kirby.

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