A review by wealhtheow
All-New Captain America: Fear Him, by Dennis Hopeless, Simone Bianchi, Rick Remender, Szymon Kudranski, Andres Mossa, Joe Caramagna

3.0

A collection of three different times Captain America fought the Scarecrow.

The first in the series: The super-serum that gave Steve Rogers his powers was neutralized, and so Steve has turned his shield and title over to long-time partner Sam Wilson, formerly known as the Falcon. As the new Captain America, Sam patrols the streets with Steve's adopted son Ian, who operates as Nomad. They successfully take out some bank robbers, but then Nomad's impetuosity gets the better of him and he's lured into the sewers to fight the Scarecrow alone. Captain America follows after him, but even together they're not able to overcome the Scarecrow; luckily, a plucky bunch of street kids helps them. Good art, with nice use of color. The way the fight scenes are drawn provides some good action, but the set up of the panels (so many tiny odd-shaped reaction shots!) was confusing. The story itself is pretty basic and old hat--just classic "hero overcomes his fearful hallucinations"-- but it is interesting to see how Sam, Steve, and Ian each contribute something different to the team. Favorite bit: Steve quoting the wikipedia entry on the Scarecrow to Sam, and Sam's outraged spluttering response.

The second in the series is from 1968, when Steve was Captain America. He sees posters with his name on them advertising for the "Coalition for Upstanding America." He confronts the group, saying, "Son, Captain America represents all the American people--their highest hopes, their grandest ideals--and no select group--however right--or wrong--can claim me for their own." The Scarecrow turns up, and Steve handily defeats him. Classic art style, and a great rendition of Cap's old costume (except those little wings on his head look pretty silly). Favorite bit: Captain America thinking to himself "I understand the fire that drives men to want to improve our lot--to see a return to a better--more decent--time. But it's their methods that leave me cold. What happens..in a land...where decency is dictated by those with loudest voices--and the greatest wealth?"

The third in the series is from 1998, when Sam Wilson had joined the Avengers but was still Falcon. He foils the Scarecrow's kidnapping attempt and then spies on Gyrich, the slimy liaison between the Avengers and the U.N. This is clearly a snippet from a larger story, and there isn't any resolution to the storyline of the political players trying to manipulate the Avengers. Very 90s art style, which I don't particularly like (Sam's muscles look pretty ridiculous in a few scenes). Favorite bit: Falcon soaring over the city accompanied by his birds. He makes flight look glorious.

I never cared about Captain America before the Marvel movies started coming out; he wasn't even the leader of the Avengers when I read them. But thanks to the Marvel movies I've become a total fan, so getting snippets of the hero over a 40+ year period was fascinating. I wish these stories had been a little more carefully curated, since I thought the first one wasn't a great showcase for Sam-as-Cap and the last one was too short to convey much story. But nevertheless, this collection gives the idea that Steve, Sam, and Captain America in general have long stood for a certain degree of anti-establishment sentiment that is unexpected but delightful.