In honor of the fourth of July holiday, we talked with comics author Rick Remender about arguably one of the most patriotic superheroes of all time, Captain America.
Q: How does Captain America’s love of his country affects his
Rick Remender: Most of his ideals are born of
passion for the American dream. His parents were immigrants who brought him
here so that he could be raised in a place where optimism was born in the soil,
where the idea that a poor immigrant could rise to the highest office made the
playing field seem more level and prosperity more obtainable. I think
this is eternally intertwined in the mind of Steve Rogers.
Q: How does Captain America’s
patriotism play into your current or upcoming stories?
R.R.: In the upcoming story “Loose
Nuke” we deal with Nuke, a super soldier who was misused by his government and
was driven insane. Nuke is one of my favorite characters of all-time. He's a
reflection of what Steve could've been had he been given a super soldier serum
and his training in a different point in American history, a point when the
government was abusing its powers. In that story, Nuke has been led to believe
that America and its reputation have been tarnished by some of the conflicts
that we've been engaged in where it wasn't clear who was the winner or loser.
So he is going out to those countries to win these old wars for America. Of
course, attacking a nation we had a skirmish with 30 years ago and planting
American flags all over their city isn't going to make for the best of headlines.
Captain America is drawn into this story and his patriotism and his love of
country will be a major part factor in how he handles Nuke.
R.R.: I'm a new father and wanted to
explore some of these themes. Fatherhood has drawn up so many memories of my
own childhood, I liked the idea of using that as a vehicle for Steve recalling
his childhood. The rest was inspired by The Road and Lone Wolf and Cub.
Q: How does Captain America see
himself as it relates to the Avengers today?
R.R.: The Avengers have become
something of his responsibility. And as the dangers threatening Earth increase,
so too does the size and scope of the Avengers lineup. Super heroes no
longer roam on solo missions quite as much as they once did. Captain
America and the Avengers have organized things a bit more.
Q: What makes Arnim Zola a great
foil for Captain America? What other Cap villains have always interested
R.R.: Zola is the perfect foil for
Captain America because he has no respect for human life, or any life for that
matter. He sees all life as clay for him to experiment and play with. He
doesn't care about the individuals desires and he doesn't care about anything
other than his own manipulations and experiments. He is a fanatic and his
curiosity rules him. I'm a fan of Zemo and the Red
Skull and plan to make use of them as well.
Q: Now that Captain America is a
member of the Uncanny Avengers, a team of both X-Men and Avengers, how does he
see his role on that team? Also, since he isn’t the leader of that team,
how is he adjusting to a role he’s not accustomed to playing?
R.R.: He sees his role on the Avengers
Unity Squad as helping on the field when needed as well as public relations. He
recognizes that when people see Rogue or Havok standing next to him it
legitimizes them and he hopes that that will make people fear mutants less than
they do. He is incredibly good at taking orders at this point. He's a soldier
and he knows how to do it, but there's a part of him that's used to piloting
the ship and he's having a difficult time handing over the reins. And in many
cases it's going to be a learning curve for him, but it's one that is necessary
in his mind as when people see him taking orders from Alex Summers, again, it
earns their trust.