If you have watched those blockbuster superhero movies, you’ll probably know already that those movies are based on comic books of the same story. Here we will visit some of the history of the Captain America series.
From Comics to Cinema – The Winter Soldier: S.H.I.E.L.D. Files
RETINA SCAN…COMPLETE…LOADING S.H.I.E.L.D. MAINFRAME… – Coming off last week’s coverage of Captain America: The First Avenger, From Comics to Cinema now continues its countdown to the US release of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. You can access past S.H.I.E.L.D. archives here: http://www.reddit.com/r/fromcomicstocinema
This week, we’re introducing a new feature: From Comics to Cinema for Charity. You can read more about it at the end of this article, or check out the fundraising page here: http://www.razoo.com/story/From-Comics-To-Cinema-For-Charity
Long before Samuel L. Jackson became the face (in both comics and film) of Nick Fury, Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., there was Sgt. Nick Fury, leader of the Howling Commandos during WWII. At the end of the War, this original Nick Fury would be treated with the Infinity Formula – a special chemical compound that kept Fury from aging. This Nick Fury would eventually go underground after coming under fire for leading a team of superheroes in an unauthorized invasion of Latveria – the fictional country best known as the home of the Fantastic Four villain, Doctor Doom.
Samuel L. Jackson first became the face of Nick Fury when Marvel launched The Ultimates. The Ultimate Comics Universe – designated Earth-1610 – acted as a medium through which Marvel might reboot many of its most popular characters. This Nick Fury also fought in WWII, before being arrested for looting a house alongside Private Wilson Fisk (Kingpin) and Corporal James Howlett (Wolverine). After his arrest, Ultimate Nick Fury would become an early subject of Project: Rebirth, and its only success save (Ultimate) Steve Rogers, who came after.
Years later, after the success of the Marvel movies had cemented Samuel L. Jackson as the face of Nick Fury, Marvel introduced ‘Marcus Johnson’ to the mainstream universe (designated Earth-616, and home of the original Nick Fury). After his mother is killed and Marcus finds himself being pursued by several major criminal groups, he is brought in by S.H.I.E.L.D. who helps him discover the truth: that he is the illegitimate son of the original Nick Fury. Marcus is eventually disfigured in a way similar to his father (and his Ultimate counterpart) and goes on to join S.H.I.E.L.D. under his birth name: Nick Fury, Jr.
When the original Nick Fury went underground, Maria Hill was selected to replace him. In the comics, Hill is chosen largely because she has no direct loyalty to Fury; and unlike her predecessor, stood opposed to S.H.I.E.L.D. support for superheroes. Originally perceived as cold and manipulative, Hill would eventually gain more trust within the superhero community after ceding her position of Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. to Tony Stark, and later for her part in saving Thor and supporting the Avengers during the Siege of Asgard.
Sharon Carter/Agent 13
Though Peggy Carter was Cap’s first love, her niece (originally written as her sister) Sharon actually debuted first in the comics. Given the codename Agent 13, Sharon first met Captain America during a mission in which they both came into conflict with the villain Batroc the Leaper. Engaging in and on-again off-again relationship, the two were most recently reunited when her investigation into the death of Jack Monroe (the 1950′s ‘Bucky’) led to her being captured by the Winter Soldier. Similar to her aunt Peggy, Sharon has a bad history with the hypnotic villain Doctor Faustus, who brainwashed her into taking part in the ‘Death of Captain America’
In the comics, Brock Rumlow started as a gang leader operating out of New York City, until joining Taskmaster’s school for criminals. There, he learns to focus his inherent brutality, and becomes a wickedly efficient mercenary and assassin. His mercenary lifestyle would eventually lead him to work for the Red Skull, who gave him his ‘Crossbones’ identity. Crossbones would later go on to train the Red Skull’s daughter, who would also become his lover for some time. After his capture following the ‘Death of Captain America’, Crossbones would spend some time serving with the Thunderbolts, a rehabilitation program that strives to turn villains into heroes; though his involvement was not based on capacity for rehabilitation, but rather so his extremist methods might sway his teammates towards reform.
Batroc the Leaper
Batroc the Leaper is a French mercenary, and master of the art of savate, a form of French kickboxing. Batroc has no superpowers, but he is in peak physical condition, and as his name would indicate, is particularly well known for his prowess in jumping great heights and distances. Though often operating as a villain, Batroc does have a strict code of honor, and numerous times has turned against partners who proved too cruel or treacherous for his twisted sense of ethics. Despite this, Batroc is still considered a deadly combatant, and during a cross-over event with the DC Universe, even managed to catch the Batman off-guard.
Recommended Readings! – Battle Scars – A controversial storyline for long-time comic fans, Battle Scars tells the story of Marcus Johnson and his journey to becoming the ‘new’ Nick Fury. Battle Scars also introduced Phil “His first name is ‘Agent’” Coulson to the comic universe (he had previously been an exclusively cinematic character).
Ultimates, Vol.1: Super-Human – The story that introduced the world to Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury. As previously noted, The Ultimates takes place in a different universe from the mainstream continuity, and so some characters may vary from the versions you’re accustomed to; but it remains a great primer for Captain America as well as the rest of the Avengers. An excellent read.
Introducing: From Comics to Cinema for Charity – The Hero Initiative – Starting this week, every month From Comics to Cinema will feature a new charity in its weekly write-ups. From now until the end of April, I’ll be featuring the Hero Initiative. The Hero Initiative helps create a financial safety net for comic book creators in need, working to provide emergency medical aid, essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work. You can read more about the Hero Initiative on their website: http://www.heroinitiative.org.
Even as little as $5 (the price of a comic book) or $10 (the price of a movie ticket) can add up to a lot when an entire community bands together to give. You can donate through From Comics to Cinema for Charity: http://www.razoo.com/story/From-Comics-To-Cinema-For-Charity or directly through the Hero Initiative PayPal account: HeroAuctions@aol.com (include ‘FC2C’ in the special instructions if you would like your donation to be tallied). You can also support the Hero Initiative by buying merchandise from their eBay store: http://www.ebay.com/usr/heroinitiative.
If you have suggestions for groups you’d like to see featured on From Comics to Cinema for Charity, post it in the comments or send me a message.
Why am I doing this? – Writing From Comics to Cinema has been a great gift for me, and I’d like to use my success to try and do some good. I’ve typically gathered 100k views every week, so even if only a small portion of us give, we could have a big impact. Even if you cannot give, I invite and encourage you all to share From Comics to Cinema through twitter, facebook, or social media spheres which might be receptive to this sort of content: the more people who read From Comics to Cinema, the more we can raise for this great group. So thank you for reading, thank you for liking, thank you for giving, and thank you for sharing.