Storytellers: Mark Waid & Chris Samnee
Additional Art: Jack Kirby with Frank Giacoia
Colors: Matthew Wilson
Letters: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Backup Story Letters: Ferran Delgado with Artie Simek & Sam Rosen
I was saddened when I finished Captain America #700. Not at the quality of the issue, since it was another perfect execution by Mark Waid, Chris Samnee, and Company. Not that it didn’t meet my high expectations, since it is exceeded them. My sadness was in the fact that this is the end of the line for the Waid Samnee run on Captain America, a far to short of a tenure on this title. Since taking over the title with Captain America #695the quality of the title has skyrocketed and the book has become the epitome of excellence.
Waid and Samnee have restored Captain America as the Sentinel of Liberty. He has returned to the standard for which American’s hold themselves to and his unwavering spirit has once again been put to the test. Since the return of the ‘real’ Captain America in the wake of Secret Empire Cap has taken to the open roads of America to rediscover himself and find his place in the world. Yet somehow that road trip has brought him to 2025 and as leader of a war torn, nuclear wasteland of America on the verge of collapse. Due to Rampart, a terrorist organization that has been antagonizing Cap since his return launched a preemptive nuclear strike in their takeover of the USA. Frozen once again in a block of ice Cap reappeared in an America that needs him more than ever. At the end of Captain America #699Rampart had been overthrown but America was anything but saved. Captain America #700opens with the world powers attempting to seize what’s left of America while Cap and his allies wage an endless defense to save what is left of America while also trying to restore fundamental needs to the surviving population. It’s a failing fight which calls for desperate measures. Without spoiling the issue the ending to this storyline was brilliant. A perfect mix of classic character moments mixed in with a heavy dose of comic book science and perfect pacing. Waid and Samnee are master storytellers and proved it here.
Captain America has been has been a stellar book the past six months and as the end of the Waid Samnee run Captain America #700is a fitting conclusion. The story was wonderful, compelling, completely accessible for new fans but endearing and nostalgic for longtime fans. Chris Samnee’s art lends itself perfectly to classic characters and he nailed it with his time on Captain America. The distinctive chainmail and pirate boots has never looked better. It’s sad that this creative teams time is over on Captain America. Waid is sticking around for a few more issues before the title is relaunched under the care of Ta Nehisi Coates, a series I’m looking forward to but I wish there was a place for more Waid and Samnee as well.
I’d feel bad if I didn’t mention the follow up story in which Mark Waid weaves a story with some wonderful Jack Kirby artwork. It’s a wonderful blending of old and new. There wasn’t anything groundbreaking about the story, it reads like a classic tale with a lot of dialogue explaining the story and of course dynamic Kirby art that leapt from the page. It’s only fitting that as the title reaches it’s 700thissue that Cap co-creator Jack Kirby had a place in the issue.
Verdict:Short and sweet is the best way I can sum up Mark Waid & Chris Samnee’s time on Captain Americaand they perfectly wrap up their run on Captain America #700. The entirety of their time on Captain Americahas been outstanding and I was saddened to see it come to an end but thankfully I will always be able to go back and read this incredible run and excellent final issue.