Overview

Captain America #7

Review

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Captain America #7

Credits

  • Words: Ed Brubaker
  • Art: Jean Paul Leon
  • Inks: Jean Paul Leon
  • Colors: Frank D?Armata
  • Story Title: The Lonesome Death of Jack Monroe
  • Publisher: Marvel Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jun 22, 2005

Jack Monroe’s last days before falling prey to the Winter Soldier are brought to light here for the first time.

I can’t say I was happy about the demise of Jack Monroe. I’ve always found him to be a fascinating character teetering on the edge, and struggling to maintain a sense of morality at the same time. But after reading this issue, Jack’s troublesome life came to a tragic close with a fitting ending to a fallen hero. He’ll really be missed and I suspect his death will have a great impact on the life of Captain America.

The issue begins with Jack learning that he’s dying. He’s not sure it’s because of the rejection of the super soldier serum or if it’s a result of the nanites in his bloodstream during the time he was Scourge. Either way Jack is dying and he seems so indifferent about it. He spends a great deal of time thinking back to a time when he was Nomad, so it’s no surprise to see him donning the costume again before succumbing to the disease slowly ravaging his mind and body. He’s a bit slower now and not as effective as he once was, but he forges ahead with taking out the drug lords and vermin he so often did while fighting alongside Cap. The trouble here is that Jack can’t decipher reality from fantasy, and the longer he goes the worse his psyche deteriorates. It’s just a shame that by the time he meets his demise he doesn’t really know who he is.

I’m not saying this is the appropriate way to end the life of a hero, but writer Ed Brubaker wrote an unapologetic story with haunting underpinnings. This is certainly not how a hero of Jack’s caliber should go out, but he’s always had a checkered past of broken promises and missed opportunities. So I tip my hat to Ed Brubaker because he got the source material right and kept true to the continuity of the character, despite the tragic ending. I think it’s also safe to say that artist Jean Paul Leon was the right choice to illustrate the downbeat atmosphere provided here, and lend some credence to one of the darker moments in a Captain America comic. I think his lean, but hard-edged graphic style really helped to set the depressing tone and bring out the desperate qualities of Jack Monroe in the process. His work was first rate here.

So if you’re looking for a book that can really get underneath your skin with a disturbing portrait of a hero’s descent into madness then I suggest this book may be for you. There’s no doubt that some of the best stories ever being written in Captain America are taking place right now, and I know there’s still more to come and we have Ed Brubaker to thank for that.

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