The Avengers: Age of Ultron opens today. So let me tell you about the first time I met Steve Rogers a.k.a. Captain America.
It was in a reprinted copy of The Avengers #4, from way back in 1964. I don’t remember who gave me that coomic, or even when I read it, but I do know that it was written by Stan Lee and drawn by the legendary Jack Kirby.
It was the story of how The Avengers stumbled upon Cap, who had been frozen in a block of ice for decades following an epic battle in World War II.
He fought them at first, thinking The Avengers to be a Nazi trick. But then he realised the truth. And I remember being struck by his despair, and eventually, his strength.
With that, he revived, became the leader of The Avengers and led Earth’s Mightiest Heroes against threats earthly and extraterrestrial, time and again.
These days, Cap’s starring in multi-million dollar blockbusters and helping to sell action figures and Subway sandwiches. But he remains an inspiration to me, whether in the comics or the movies.
This is why.
1) He’s a man of ideals
Yes, he proudly bears the name ‘America’. Yes, he’s very much a patriot of the old-fashioned kind. And yes, he’s a man out of time.
But Steve Rogers, as quaint and ancient as he may sometimes seems, has always been about the right values: Courage (both physical and moral) and justice.
Cap’s often accused of being a boy scout, and his ideals sometimes seem impossibly lofty. But then again, that’s the whole point of ideals, isn’t it?
2) He never gives up
Even in the face of the Red Skull, Hydra and a literal god, Cap never, ever gives up.
I know what you’re thinking: Hey, he’s a literal super soldier with a vibranium (NOT the hardest metal on Earth, no matter what Age of Ultron tells you) shield.
But remember this: Even when he was a malnourished weakling being slapped around by bullies, Steve Rogers never gave up.
3) He’s loyal to the same lady – even after 70 years
At the risk of spoiling you, there’s a sequence in Age of Ultron that will tell you: Cap has never forgotten Peggy Carter, the lady he was forced to leave behind during his final mission.
In the comics, Peggy was a French partisan. In the movies, she’s an English belle. Regardless, their doomed romance is one for the ages.
That may change in Captain America 3, with the emergence of Peggy’s niece Sharon Carter. (Yes, I know it’s kinda creepy, but Steve deserves SOME happiness, dammit). But Steve and Peggy deserved to be together.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, there’s something in my eye.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron opens in Singapore today. Tell us who your favourite Avenger is!