Captain America – The First Avenger

Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Hayley Atwell, Tommy Lee Jones, Stanley Tucci
Dir. Joe Johnston

You probably already know the story. Spindley Steve Rogers can’t get into the army no matter how hard he tries. He gets beaten up and even snubbed by one of Doctor Who’s companions (a pre-BBC-fame Jenna Louise Coleman). But with the help of Dr Abraham Irskine’s science and Howard Stark’s gadgetry, Steve Rogers is transformed from beanpole to Charles Atlas.

Captain_America_The_First_Avenger_posterPart of Marvel’s sprawling superhero family tree, Captain America is probably the strangest superhero of all the Avengers. We laugh at Robert Downey Jnr’s Iron Man, thank god the Hulk doesn’t live next door, and wonder why Thor isn’t playing drums for a symphonic metal band, but Captain America, well, to non-Americans, he’s a single country in a jumpsuit. Imagine a superhero named Commandant Deutschland running about chinning folk and you’d rightfully start squirming in your seat.

When we cheer for Captain America are we cheering the country? The risk is one of overpoliticising what is essentially a comic book character, so caution is necessary. I suppose Captain United Nations Non-Interventionist Peacekeeping Force wouldn’t have the same ring to it.

Still, he saves the day and does his duty to the letter, which is preserve the franchise and be ready for when old bad-ass Samuel L Jackson comes a-calling. And sooner or later someone is going to notice a mountain being hollowed out and filled with Nazis. Makes you wonder why no one ever spots these things until it’s too late.

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