Captain America #18
Written by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Art by Jason Masters
Colors by Matt Milla
Letters by Cory Petit
The Rundown: Steve must come out of hiding to ease tensions in the city while continuing his hunt for Scourge.
With Scourge still on the loose, the Mayor presumed dead and chaos rising, Steve and his team are dispatched to the scene of a potential riot against a group of ex-cons hold up in the halfway house they call home. Utilizing Spider-Woman’s pheromones, Steve manages to calm the crowd long enough to get them not only on his side, but also to get the police to tell him where Scourge is hiding.
After taking a trip upstate, Captain America and the team quickly move to protect the cops pinned down by heavy weapons fire. Steve knows that if he wants to take Scourge in alive, he’s going to have to move in quickly and alone. While Steve continues to fight, Sharon continues to keep secrets from him.
The Story: Coates has been doing some really interesting things with Steve as a character and I have enjoyed many of the storylines post Secret Empire as Rogers works to rebuild his reputation with the country and the people. As far as this issue, the story feels flat. Steve’s emotional plea to the crowd notwithstanding, the story doesn’t really do much. The characters and their actions just lay there and the confrontation with Scourge was anticlimactic at best. What made Scourge interesting just felt lost in this attempt to move the story forward. It was ok and that is unfortunately, not high praise.
The Art: Unfortunately, Jason Masters’ art looked as flat as this story was. It’s possible that a story with some emotional heft could have been elevated by the art, but neither the story nor the art made this issue memorable.