In honor of the seventy-fifth anniversary of Captain America this month, we’re doing a countdown of your favorite Captain America stories of all-time.
You all voted, now here are the results of what you chose as the 75 Greatest Captain America Stories!
30. “The Mercenary and the Madman” Captain America #251-252
It is really kind of nuts how just basic this story sounds – Mr. Hyde and Batroc the Leaper team-up to hijack an oil tanker and threaten to blow it up (which would be practically like a nuke going off in New York Harbor) unless they are paid a billion dollars – oh, and Captain America must give himself up as a hostage until the money is paid.
However, Roger Stern, John Byrne and Joe Rubinstein manage to just do all the little things perfectly to make this a very memorable two-parter. Byrne and Rubinstein’s artwork is excellent and Stern really nails the characters extremely well – especially how he makes Batroc so compelling. As the title states, yes, he’s a mercenary, but he’s not a madman like Mister Hyde. When he discovers that Hyde plans on blowing up New York City no matter what just to get revenge on his former partner, Cobra (Stern tying in to his run on Spectacular Spider-Man, where Hyde and Cobra turned on each other), Batroc decides to fight for New York – this is where we learn why, exactly, he asked for Captain America in particular…
Just three comic book creators all at the top of their game at the same time.
29. “Castaway in Dimension Z” Captain America (Volume 7) #1-10
In the opening arc of Rick Remender’s run on Captain America (working with John Romita Jr., who was in turned paired with Klaus Janson and Tom Palmer), Captain America ends up in an alternate dimension ruled by Arnim Zola, who is experimenting on two young children, ostensibly “his” kids. He has brought Captain America here to experiment on him to give his kids the Super Soldier Serum. Cap, though, doesn’t play that and escapes…
That’s the set-up for the rest of the series, as Cap is trapped in the dimension for twelve years (while barely any time has passed on our Earth). He raises the boy as his own and trains him to fight against his “father.” Meanwhile, Zola’s daughter has been brought up to take over from Zola. Can Cap escape from Dimension Z? And if he does, can he save both Ian AND Jet in the process? Romita Jr. embraces his best inner Kirby in this epic storyline.
28. Batman and Captain America
This is the first of what would become a series of similar titles by John Byrne where he would meticulously place comic book characters in the proper context of their times while also telling enjoyable yarns set in those times (his Superman/Batman Generations series would take that idea to a whole other level). The end result is one of the best intercompany crossovers of all-time (in fact, one person suggested that this was the top Batman intercompany crossover of all-time)
Byrne’s artwork is strong but most of all, he just completely embraced the FUN of having Batman and Captain America team-up during the Golden Age…
Go to the next page for #27-24!
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