Before Pearl Harbor was attacked by The Japanese Army In December, 1941, comic book writers/artists, Jack Kirby & Joe Simon created a character named Steve Rogers, also known as, “Captain America.
Arguably the first Marvel superhero to exist in comics, Captain America was first conceived as a sketch drawn by Joe Simon, he originally wanted to called Cap “Super American.” He changed his mind as realized that the name “Super” is used too many times on certain superheroes, most obviously Superman. Joe came up with a unique idea to put Captain as a codename as opposed to putting Super.
The sole reason why Captain America was created, is because Joe & Jack were disgusted with Nazi Germany’s involvement in World War II. In response they forever made an influential superhero since The Man Of Steel paved The Golden Age Of Comics. Cap is the equivalent of Superman.
Steve Rogers origin is about him trying to enlist in The Army, unfortunately, he was rejected due to his weak body. Upset that he can’t join, a scientist named Abraham Erskine, recruits Steve to volunteer as a test subject to work on an experiment called “Project Rebirth.” It’s basically a serum that transforms the subject into an enhanced (not too powerful) one man army. The experiment was a success transforming Steve into a healthy individual.
During Cap’s early years, he fought Red Skull (his archenemy) with the help of his sidekick, Bucky Barnes. After World War II comes to an end, Cap’s popularity was fading drastically. The 50’s was a difficult period for Cap appearing in a failed revival series with fellow superhero “The Sub-Mariner.” It wasn’t until A Decade Later, Cap finally returns to the comic book spotlight as one of the members of The Avengers, thus his popularity came back. Cap’s absence finally made since to readers, after World War II ended he was frozen in ice.
Like Superman, Captain America is one the most popular superheroes in comic book history. He appeared in cartoons, movie serials from The 40’s, video games, & merchandise consisting of action figures, t-shirts, costumes, silver ware, collectibles etc.
Prior to Chris Evans portraying Cap in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, (MCU for short) a film released in 1990, was a failed attempt to compete with Tim Burton’s Batman. Cut to Eighteen Years Later, Iron Man became a critical and commercial hit responsible for kickstarting the MCU. Between 2008 & 2012, Hulk, Thor & Captain America finally made their debuts to coincide with The Avengers.
Captain America: The First Avenger was released in 2011. (same year X-Men: First Class came out) It received positive reviews from critics and made enough money at the box office.
Fun Fact: The First Avenger came out a day before my 18th birthday. I’m glad I saw it as an early birthday present!
With Avengers: Infinity War coming out on April 27, 2018, I’ve decided to look back at some films related to the MCU in chronological order, starting with The First Avenger.
The following review is a NON-SPOILER article. If you have never seen this movie, feel free to read it.
Victory & Defeat Aspects
Victory: Chris Evans did a wonderful job for his performance as the title character.
Other Cast Members such as Hugo Weaving, Tommy Lee Jones, Haley Atwell, Sebastian Stan, Dominic Cooper & Stanley Tucci all did a great job on their respective performances.
Action Sequences were decent to keep me entertained.
Director, Joe Johnston (Honey I Shrunk The Kids, Jumanji) did a good job on directing.
Cinematography didn’t suffer from technical problems.
Composer, Alan Silvestri (Back To The Future Trilogy, The Avengers) orchestrated the soundtrack.
Visual Effects are tremendous most notably, Chris Evans’ body had to be edited to make him look scrawny.
The First Avenger retains Cap’s origin story where it all began. Like Superman, Cap is arguably the beacon to many superheroes influenced for his heroic deeds.
A Wilhelm Scream is used in one scene.
Cap’s costume is based on the WWII era design from Ultimate Marvel.
The film introduces a cube called “The Tesseract.” Inside the cube contains a gem linked to The Infinity Gauntlet, which plays a pivotal role in the MCU.
Producers managed to incorporate Captain America’s first appearance issue during a Montage Sequence.
At the 08:52 mark, pause your TV to look at a list of Steve’s health problems prior to the super soldier experiment.
Steve’s first uses his catchphrase, “ I can do this all day.” It is also used in Captain America: Civil War.
Tony Stark/Iron Man’s father Howard Stark, factors in as one of Cap’s allies. I’m giving Howard an Extra Point for inventing with a hover car. Agent Phil Coulson owns a hover car dubbed, “Lola.” Perhaps Coulson’s favorite song is Lola.
In almost every Marvel related movie, Stan Lee makes a cameo appearance.
Besides Stan, Samuel L. Jackson makes a cameo appearance.
Without giving too much away, Steve isn’t the only one who participated in the super soldier experiment.
An unexpected Death Scene happens to one of the lead characters. I don’t wanna spill he beans, you’re gonna have to see who it is.
A Post-Credits Scene sets up The Avengers.
Defeat: After successfully injecting the serum into Steve’s body, The Army sponsors him as a celebrity to promote army recruitment rather than assigning him to do dangerous missions. My goodness, this is the 2005 version of Fantastic Four all over again, by treating the team as celebrities rather than superheroes! Nobody in The Military would ever do that in real life!
The Final Verdict: A-
Captain America: The First Avenger is great origin story surrounding Marvel’s first superhero. If you’re a first timer to begin the MCU, start with this one before you watch the other films in chronological order if you want to see Avengers: Infinity War.