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Captain America #2 - Castaway in Dimension Z, Chapter Two Review

4

Rick Remender and John Romita Jr. continue Captain America's crazy adventures in Dimension Z.

The Good

Rick Remender shows us exactly what you do to follow a long running and fan favorite run of a character. Ed Brubaker left some big shoes to fill with the adventures of Captain America. Remender looked at those shoes, threw them out and put on a new and fancy pair of high tech running shoes.

Captain America has recently started getting close to Wolverine status in terms of appearing in countless titles at the same time. Readers should just enjoy each separate appearance but we can't help but wonder how he can fit in all the adventures with just a seven day week. When the first issue of this new series came out, that same question popped into my mind. When does this story take place in comparison to AVENGERS and UNCANNY AVENGERS? It really doesn't matter. After you turn the recap page and see three words on the page, be prepared for your jaw to drop. This explains a lot. It doesn't explain everything, that's still to come. But pieces are starting to fall in place.

Captain America in Dimension Z is a trip. When I saw where this was going in the first issue, I was unsure. Seeing the story unfold here, you can appreciate that this is a pure story. You'll get pulled in, seeing how Cap will deal with being in a strange world and not necessarily have the strategic tactics he's known for. We're seeing a more desperate Cap but that doesn't mean he isn't completely capable of kicking ass. Remender is showing us we definitely haven't seen all there is to see about the character. The use of flashbacks to Steve's youth also build on what makes him who he is today.

The Bad

While I am not one that feels complete displeasure in John Romita Jr's art, there are times it gets a little rough. We have some strange residents in Dimension Z and in this style, they don't look as formidable as they should. There's also the character (seen on the cover) with Cap. When I first saw the cover, I wondered who the little girl was. It turns out, it's not a little girl.

Talk about a cliffhanger ending. I actually sat there for a couple seconds trying to see if the page was stuck to another and there was at least one more page.

The Verdict

This isn't the Captain America series you were expecting. Rick Remender has taken the reigns and is taking us on a completely tripped out and wacky adventure. We've been seeing so many stories of Cap as a soldier working for the government. While the Brubaker stories full of thrills and espionage were great, Remender is clearly doing his own thing. He's showing it's not necessary to try to replicate what happened before and is delivering stories on his own terms. This means we're getting Cap stories we didn't think was possible or may have forgotten were possible. The concern with the issue is the art. Seeing the different inhabitants of Dimension Z doesn't have quite the feel you would expect it to, given the tone of the story. The style definitely is setting it's own tone but some of the creatures don't look as menacing as they should. If you're looking for Captain America stripped down to the core of his character and want a fresh start, you definitely need to check out what Rick Remender has cooking.

18 Comments
Posted by jsphsmth

I was very unsure of Remender's scifi/horror approach to Cap. Sounds like it might be a good thing. I will be picking the series up.

Posted by SmashBrawler

@G-Man said:

There's also the character (seen on the cover) with Cap. When I first saw the cover, I wondered who the little girl was. It turns out, it's not a little girl.

I thought the exact same thing. That was one of my gripes with this issue, the other one being the sudden timeskip. Maybe having this on the cover would have helped:

But ignoring those two minor complaints, I enjoyed this issue.

Posted by evensteve11

Good issue. The cliffhanger was crazy. The art was kind of dodgy at times but didn't hinder the comic too much. I was going to drop it but now will stick through this arc to see how it all plays out.

Posted by jointron33

I'm still not sure if I really like this setting and all. This Kamandi-esque setting(and look) is kind of off-putting, and rather uninteresting to me. Still, it's ironic since it resembles both Kamandi and O.M.A.C., the latter of which was intended to be a "Captain America in the future" originally.

Edited by jinxuandi

I really enjoyed this issue. I was skeptical at first of how Remender would follow up Brubaker's epic run, but he is going in a completely different, sci-fi direction where he can tell his own story and is tackling things (like Cap's childhood, a topic which has long been ignored) that have not been written about it in 25 years.

EDIT: Romita's art is not in the same "realistic" style as Epting and many of the other artists who recently worked on this book. Personally I feel it fits with the new tone of this book: fantastical and exaggerated, like Dimension Z. I don't think there's anything wrong with the art, but the sudden change in style may disturb those accustomed to a more noir-ish tone.

Posted by Raw_Material

Definitely picking this one up and most likely doing a review on this, as well. Great Review! His first issue totally caught me by surprise in the last pages and that's what I'm thinking he does in this issue too.

Posted by Rugor

Interesting review - but one point - it's "reins," not "reigns."

I've been seeing this one a lot lately.

Posted by Mercy_

Ugh JR JR. Can't handle it.

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Posted by Almighty1Azel

loving the story so far... art i can deal with out.... hes just not for everyone...     but i will stay reading  

Posted by insheepsclothes

really woulda loved to have given this series a chance but im just sick of JR Jr....hes terrible....ive heard hes good at turning out pages fast & hes a legacy n all that but sweet baby jane, his work is awful...i love Remender but just cant bring myself to look at the art......maybe they have an audio book version.....hmmmmmm......

Posted by Cap10nate

Enjoying the story but not the art. It's not realistic like Epting was on the title or conceptual like Guice has been on Winter Soldier with the interesting panel layouts and shading. This art just rough. The faces look goofy. The other species aren't that menacing as the review states. I think it really detracts from the story and that it is dragging what could be a phenomenal story to mediocrity.

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Posted by BR_Havoc

First issue really was a nice surprise to me. I hope Remender can keep up the good work and tell good Cap stories which are very different from his normal stuff.

Edited by secondfallen616

Art aside, which is okay albeit dated and cant see anything but Kick-Ass when i see JR's work, the story is really good. Cements Remender's status in the best of todays storytellers. Can't wait to see how Cap deals with this unknown realm and manages to be the hero he should be. All the parallels to the turmoil in modern day america, at least the media's version, seems to be put aside for pure action/adventure and that is awesome and welcomed by me. If i see one more panel of a talking head in a Cap comic then i may go crazy, none so far at least no spread pages of news reports, ugh.....buy this book, its awesome but lets get a new artist please, all respect to a legend but it needs a more detailed depiction of this new place and only a new artist can bring that kind of style (long list of guys).

Who would be a good choice?

Edited by kid Apollo
Posted by CraigWayne

@insheepsclothes:

I agree with you on the art.I think Olivier Copiel would've worked for the Cap series.I'm not a fan JRJR's art style but it has it's moments

Posted by iaconpoint

positioning statement: having grown up with JRJR on ASM I'm a bit biased in his favor, but I must respectfully disagree with his detractors. His art is unique and is totally suited for these alien- type settings. That said, I'm loving this series so far.

Posted by tiffen

i LOVED the art. I thought JRJR really brought it on this issue. thought it was drawn killer, really communicating cap's isolation, desperation and degradation.

and remender is writing one hell of a story

much to my surprise, this is one of my fave marvel now titles

Posted by War Killer

So far I'm enjoying this new series. Like most fans of Cap, it was hard to believe that anyone could outdo Brubaker's run, but Remender is taking Cap on a crazy adventure and I'm loving every minute of it. At first, with the whole issue concerning when this storyline tales place, I have a feeling that we'll learn that time most likely flows differently in Zola's world than ours, explaining how he could be gone for so long yet still be on two Avengers teams. I'm curious about what will happen to the Ian, as he sees Cap as a father figure and I'm curious on what his fate will be by the end of this adventure. I have a feeling he'll probably stay in this world with his sister, but another part of me wouldn't mind seeing Steve take him back home with him. I'd love to see Sharon's face, one minute she's talking with Cap about marriage and he feels unsure of the idea and the next minute he's got a son. xD