Captain America (2005) - #34
"The Death of Captain America Act 2, the Burden of Dreams: Part Four" (Director's Cut)
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Jackson 'Butch' Guice
Frank G. D'Armata - 'fgd'
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Cover Date: March 2008
Cover Price: US $ 3.99
Issue Tagline: None.
Format: Color; Standard Comic Issue; 48 pages
This is a version of the following issue:
Captain America (2005) #34 - The Death of Captain America Act 2, the Burden of Dreams: Part Four
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The Burden of Dreams
The Death of Captain America
The new Captain America makes his debut as the Black Widow joins him in battling the machinations of the Red Skull. Cap and the Black Widow battle agents of the Red Skull as SHIELD Director Tony Stark works to convince the government that the Red Skull is behind the economic collapse that is stirring civil unrest.
COMPLETE SYNOPSIS BELOW (CONTAINS SPOILERS)
It's the debut of the new Captain America as James Buchanan "Bucky" Barnes assumes the mantle of his old friend and mentor, Steve Rogers. The Red Skull puts his plan into action, using his position as the head of Kronas to strike a severe blow against the American economy and financial systems. As frightened and angry citizens take to the streets in protest, SHIELD Director Tony Stark fights to convince a dubious cabinet secretary that the economic shock is the work of a super-villain and not just unfortunate fallout from aggressive business practices. When the Black Widow arrives to transport Bucky to his first public battle as Cap, they question the legal ambiguity of their position. Bucky is an unregistered hero working with Tony Stark and the Black Widow, both Avengers and registered super-humans. Natasha says that Stark's deal with Bucky is private, and that SHIELD has no record of his existence anymore. Bucky and the Black Widow take on a combined team of A.I.M. and R.A.I.D. agents who are attempting to steal the gold reserves held on Wall Street. After discussing with Arnim Zola the work Zola has done on "the chamber" and "Dr. Faustus's contraption", the Red Skull has Dr. Faustus to activate his "First Wave". Bucky and Black Widow succeed in stopping the robbery, with the new Captain America demonstrating distinctly different techniques than his predecessor. He uses his cybernetic arm to wield the legendary shield of Captain America, compensating for his lack of the Super-Soldier Serum, the process which made Steve Rogers the pinnacle of physiology. He uses the shield as a weapon and as a distraction, kneecapping several enemies with his pistol when they think he has missed them with a throw of his shield. Even though they won, Bucky is frustrated that he cannot strike at the Red Skull directly. SHIELD suddenly has the agents corrupted by Dr. Faustus reappear on their tracking system. The rogue agents have infiltrated the unit conducting crowd control of angry protesters in front of the White House. Director Stark orders them to be subdued but his command comes too late. Dr. Faustus gives his corrupted agents the signal and they fire on the crowd, killing and wounding American citizens while in full SHIELD uniform in front of national TV news cameras. Stark reacts with dismay to the attack as the indignant cabinet secretary demands an explanation.
The new Captain America costume was designed by Alex Ross with input from Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting.
The synopsis text page that begins the issue makes one reference to the "Red Skrull" rather than the Red Skull. While this is surely a typo, it is interesting to note its presence in light of the upcoming Secret Invasion and the Skrull paranoia building in the Avengers titles this month.
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