Growing up I always thought of Captain America as a goody two shoes. I probably don’t remember the story quite right, but I remember him going into retirement because he was so racked with guilt after accidentally killing a low level agent of AIM or Hydra or something. This was at a time when The Punisher was going around killing anything that moved in Marvel’s most popular book. But ten years ago or so when I saw the opening of the Ultimate Avengers cartoon with Cap storming Normandy, I thought he was kind of a bad ass. One year for my nephew’s birthday I got him a collection of the first 25 issues of The Avengers & reading those I was pretty into the para-suicidal martyr version of the character Stan Lee was doing. Then I heard about the storyline where he got shot in the head by his hypnotized girlfriend & I kinda knew I should check out some more of his adventures.
So Captain America: Patriot is not about the Captain America Steve Rogers, but about a guy named Jeff Mace who took on the costume during the post-WWII era when Steve was frozen in a block of ice. Mace is a reporter with 4F status so he can’t be drafted, so he decides to do his part by becoming the home front superhero The Patriot & eventually begrudgingly becomes Captain America. I like this book a lot. It’s more about the humanity side of being a hero than about action & fairly self-contained. It is a good place to look for a grownup superhero comic that doesn’t rely on violence & being dark & gritty. I hope to read more books like this.