Sam Wilson takes flight in his new ongoing series with writer Rodney Barnes!

Sam Wilson’s time as Captain America may be over, but he doesn’t intend to stop protecting the country and the world. After helping end the threat of Hydra dominance in Secret Empire, Sam has decided that he needs to embrace the identity of The Falcon once again.

And on October 11, he returns to the skies with Marvel Legacy in FALCON #1! Written by Rodney Barnes with art by Joshua Cassara, Sam Wilson engages enemies on the global stage and in quiet in Chicago back alleys alike.

Barnes took a few minutes away from writing the new series to tell us about the return of The Falcon.

Marvel.com: What’s it like kicking off the FALCON ongoing series on the back of the character becoming more high profile than ever before?

Rodney Barnes: It’s exciting, anxiety-creating, and an honor all at once! I grew up reading the Falcon when he teamed with Captain America so being a part of his adventures at this point in time ticks off a bucket list endeavor for me.

Marvel.com: How would you describe the essence of Sam Wilson?

Rodney Barnes: He’s a leader and a patriot; those two aspects of him must be omnipresent in any storyline. He’s confident, but realistic in regards to the task at hand.

The work comes in making sure there’s a human being behind the mask and not a “perfect” person. We all have flaws, but super heroes operate from a higher place so finding balance will always be the key.

Marvel.com: What role does Falcon play in the Marvel Universe as this story begins?

Rodney Barnes: This goes back to your first question. He’s at the highest profile of his career. Having been Captain America, leader of the Avengers, and having been front and center during the events of Secret Empire, the whole world has an awareness of him. He’s no longer the sidekick I knew as a kid.

Although he’s viewed as a prime time player by his peers and the public, in his own mind Sam doesn’t want the everyday problems of everyday people to get lost in the shuffle of the higher profile events he’s now associated with.

Marvel.com: Where do we find Sam’s state of mind at the start of this book?

Rodney Barnes: Sam feels a need to reconnect with the issues that moved him to become a super hero in the first place. He wanted to help people, so he’s taking a grassroots approach to doing just that. The new costume acts as a symbol of that desire. It’s a new look—not identifiable with the hats he’s worn as of late. He’s proud of his time as Captain America, but it felt like an act of duty as much as a goal he sought after. He’s most comfortable as The Falcon and reconnecting with his former persona feels like coming home.

Marvel.com: What can you tell readers about his new partner The Patriot?

Rodney Barnes: He’s a fun character. Having written the story where he began his career—SECRET EMPIRE: BRAVE NEW WORLD #2—Patriot captures the mindset of a current day hero. He’s motivated by the same desire to help people as any other super hero, but he sees the world from today’s fast paced, optimistic, millennial mindset. He’s not only learning to be a hero—he’s growing up at the same time. And his points of view are being tested by the trials and tribulations of the heroes’ journey.

Marvel.com: Your opening arc pits Wilson against Blackheart. What made Blackheart an appealing choice for this storyline?

Rodney Barnes: It felt different. I knew I wanted to discuss gangs and issues of race and culture, but I didn’t want to be predictable by telling a one dimensional story. Blackheart acted as the right choice because, while he’s not someone like Mephisto, he’s still more powerful than those trying to stop him.

He’s second tier on the dark magic totem pole, so he fit the role of antagonist I needed for the story I wanted to tell. Blackheart’s presence gives me the opportunity to blend genres—I’m not just telling a story of current social ills. I’m not straying so far from the Marvel Universe that the story becomes medicine.

Marvel.com: How would you describe the tone of the book? And how does artist Joshua Cassara help create that feeling?

Rodney Barnes: The tone feels both grounded and mystical. We’re operating in the hard scrabble streets of the South Side of Chicago. Then again, we’re in hell. So it’s not something I’ve ever seen before.

I can’t say enough about Josh. He’s fantastic! He blends worlds better than I could’ve ever imagined. He’s been the perfect collaborator. I’ve never worked on an ongoing comic before but I can’t think of a better partner in this venture. I had the pleasure of meeting him at San Diego Comic Con and we had a blast talking about all of the visual possibilities of our journey with Falcon. It’s been a highlight of this experience for me. I love the guy.

Marvel.com: Lastly, what would you say directly to fans to persuade them to pick up this title? What makes FALCON a can’t-miss?

Rodney Barnes: This adventure will be one of the most personal in the history of The Falcon. He’ll have to battle a demon set on conquering mankind as well as the demons that have haunted his own psyche. If you’ve ever wanted to see the Falcon tested beyond anything he’s ever faced, this book’s for you!

FALCON #1, by Rodney Barnes and artist Joshua Cassara, takes off on October 11!

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Peek inside as artist Joshua Cassara gives Sam Wilson wings once again!

Secret Empire gave Sam Wilson a rough time—he gave up the mantle of Captain America and his best friend betrayed the country. Despite his hardships, Sam did not get deterred—and even returned to lift the shield when his allies needed him most.

On October 11, Sam enters the newest chapter of his story when Marvel Legacy takes flight with FALCON #1! Writer Rodney Barnes and artist Joshua Cassara oversee Wilson’s transition back to his classic winged identity as the hero takes on the role of mentor to The Patriot.

We met up with Joshua to talk about getting Wilson back in the air, working with Rodney Barnes, and bringing Patriot into the fold!

Marvel.com: Did working on Secret Empire give you a sense of Sam Wilson and where he might be after the event?

Joshua Cassara: Absolutely. I didn’t actually get to draw him in my chapters, but I followed the series very closely. The whole event took its toll on his psyche, and Secret Empire primed the pump for where we find Sam as he takes back the mantle as Falcon.

Marvel.com: Sam’s had a rough go of it ever since he took over as Captain America. How does that affect him in the pages of FALCON?

Joshua Cassara: As we start FALCON, we see Sam struggle with the fallout from Secret Empire. His foundations are still shaken as he reflects on his time as Captain America and his relationship with Steve Rogers—the person he trusted the most and would loyally follow into battle…only to find out he’d been lied to the entire time. It shattered his trust and he’s trying to make sense of it all while heading to the streets of Chicago to deal with some burgeoning chaos.

Marvel.com: What are the key elements to drawing this new Falcon costume? How do you balance the old and new?

Joshua Cassara: My favorite part about Alex Ross’ new design for Falcon was making the costume black with splashes of red. I think it reflects the darker tone of Sam’s headspace and where this series turns. I made sure to stock up on extra ink!

The wings are attached from his back and follow along his arms like the original costume, but they can also retract and be much shorter when he’s not flying or finds himself in tight quarters.

I love how Alex used the original designs and patterns on the shoulders, abdomen, and eye shield. He incorporated them so well into the new look, but kept that retro feel.

Marvel.com: The book also finds Sam training the new Patriot. How has it been putting your spin on this new character?

Joshua Cassara: I look at Patriot, A.K.A. Rayshaun Lucas, as the younger, idealistic version of Sam Wilson. While Sam seems disillusioned over the trials and tribulations he’s been through, the young Patriot acts as the beacon of optimism that keeps Sam from succumbing to his own demons.

It’s no accident that I drew Rayshaun like he could be Sam’s son.

Marvel.com: Falcon and Patriot will face off against Blackheart. What’s it like pitting these heroes against such a mystic threat?

Joshua Cassara: It’s what sold me on joining this series. I’m so excited to draw the mystical elements of this universe. I’ve never really been able to explore that before art-wise, so I look forward to the challenge.

I love the juxtaposition of the streets and violence of Chicago and then being whisked away to the dark, astral, celestial corners of the universe. Blackheart will be such a great villain; unlike anything Sam has ever faced. I’m really pumped to give my take on him.

Marvel.com: How has it been collaborating with Rodney on this project?

Joshua Cassara: Awesome. I love the direction Rodney’s taking this series—and again, that’s why I wanted to come aboard. He’s more than happy to incorporate some of the ideas or notes I have and he appreciates my contribution as I bring his script to life. He’s a true collaborator in every sense of the word. He comes from the world of film and TV, and while you see that influence in his style, he is one hell of a comic book writer. He’s legit.

Writer Rodney Barnes and artist Joshua Cassara’s FALCON #1 soars on October 11!

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Sam Wilson soars again thanks to Rodney Barnes and Joshua Cassara!

While the events of SECRET EMPIRE have not been kind to Sam Wilson, this Fall the hero will return to his roots as he leaves behind the shield and returns to his original moniker, the Falcon!

Rodney Barnes, the award-winning television writer who has worked on “The Boondocks,” “Everybody Hates Chris” and “Those Who Can’t,” will team with Joshua Cassara (SECRET EMPIRE: UPRISING) to bring the former Captain America back down to street level – and take him to places he hasn’t seen before.

We caught up with Barnes and Cassara to find out what they have in store for the high-flying Avenger!

Marvel.com: Rodney, this is your first regular series for Marvel, but I understand you’ve been a fan for a while. What are some of your first memories of discovering the Marvel Universe? What are some of your favorite storylines?

Rodney Barnes: My mother was an elementary school teacher when I was a kid. She’d do her lesson plans at the public library in Annapolis, Maryland, and I’d go with her. I must’ve been eight or nine at the time, and I recall this area where they’d keep comic books. I clearly remember reaching in this huge box and pulling out the Neal Adams issues of the AVENGERS. I was hooked. I loved the Jim Starlin’s WARLOCK and CAPTAIN MARVEL books (early Thanos was great!). Marshall Rodgers’ DOCTOR STRANGE, Miller’s run on DAREDEVIL, Claremont/Byrne/Cockrum’s X-MEN, Barry Windsor-Smith’s “Red Nails” stories in CONAN … [laughs] I could go on forever. 

Marvel.com: How did you end up working for Marvel?

Rodney Barnes: I was working on season two of “Vinyl” for HBO when midpoint we were cancelled, and I needed a gig. My agent told me about a Marvel series that was looking for a writer at my level. I had two shows and a movie in development at the time, but I’d wanted to work for the company so badly that I took the interview and fell in love with the show’s creators. So, I sort of abandoned my development and went on to have one of the best creative experiences to date. The entire experience from top to bottom was incredible; great, talented folks that loved working in the Marvel universe. Once I was hired, I made it known that I was interested in writing comics and the universe came together and here we are.

Marvel.com: Joshua, how did you end up working on the Falcon?

Joshua Cassara: I had been working some SECRET EMPIRE stuff when my editor Tom [Brevoort] had approached me with this.  Of course under super-duper, double secrecy, he filled me in on the project and that I’d be pairing up with Rodney on FALCON.  That’s when I was introduced to our editor, Charles Beacham, who is helming this ship.   

Marvel.com: What was the draw for the two of you to work on the new FALCON series?

Rodney Barnes: Reading the Captain America stories where Falcon was his sidekick and enjoyed them. But since it was Cap’s book, Sam typically acquiesced to him. So even as a kid, I hoped that if I ever got the opportunity to write a story for him, I’d venture into uncharted waters.

Joshua Cassara: It’s exciting to a part of launching the solo Falcon book.  He definitely deserves his own series, especially following the events of SECRET EMPIRE and his run as CAPTAIN AMERICA. It’s been a long time coming.

Also, I was really happy to be partnered up with Rodney on this adventure. His take on where Sam is now and where he’s going is something totally new for Falcon, and will be awesome for me to create visually.  

Marvel.com: Sam’s been through hell recently; taking over the mantle of Captain America didn’t work out so well for him, given the guy who handed him the shield, his best friend, turned out to be a sleeper agent. What’s his state of mind as the series begins?

Rodney Barnes: Uncertain. He blames himself for not seeing sooner Cap’s true self. This has sent him on a journey of self exploration. It’s my hope that when he comes out on the other side he’s stronger and more focused.  

Marvel.com: During Secret Empire Sam seemed to give up his costumed identity. Rodney, can you talk about why he returns to being a costumed hero?

Rodney Barnes: The symbolism. After Hydra, the world has been thrown into a meat grinder. History was rewritten and the symbols we held dear were replaced with Hydra propaganda. Sam wants to reestablish the importance of hope via symbolism. His costume is a step in that direction. 

Marvel.com: You introduced the new Patriot in SECRET EMPIRE: BRAVE NEW WORLD. What role will he play in the new series?

Rodney Barnes: Rayshaun helps to balance Sam’s perspective. He’s pretty hard on himself at this point and Shaun helps him get out of his feelings. 

Marvel.com: What villains can we expect to see plaguing Falcon and Patriot? 

Rodney Barnes: The first arc they’re battling Blackheart. If they make it past him I think it’s safe to say that the demons father won’t be too happy about that. Then literally — excuse the pun because I can’t help myself — they’ll have hell to pay! Sorry [laughs].

Marvel.com: Joshua, what have been your favorite moments to draw so far in FALCON? Has there been anything so far that Rodney has challenged you to do that’s been especially fun?

Joshua Cassara: I’m early on in this series, setting up our hero’s return to the street level.  So portraying the chaos and grit of a city that’s mired in turmoil is always a blast. That sounds terrible, doesn’t it? 

But the real fun and challenge I’m looking forward to is the turn towards the mystical elements that we’re heading towards. It’s something I’ve never really explored before art-wise, and I only wish I could draw faster so I can get there as quick as possible! 

Marvel.com: When you’re drawing something street-level, what kind of research do you do for the comic, to ensure you capture the setting?

Joshua Cassara: Well, obviously, the internet is your biggest friend in searching for reference images of all kinds. Especially searching for things that might be unique to Chicago since this is where our story takes place. But I will also incorporate personal experience I’ve had or witnessed in other big cities. Or even some settings or portrayals I’ve seen in a movie.  It’s an amalgam of them all and I make it my own.  

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The Star-Spangled Avenger faces a vast conspiracy and one of his darkest hours!

Every day we celebrate Captain America’s 75th anniversary by looking deep into the Marvel Unlimited archives and going through some of Steve Rogers’ most thrilling adventures. Happy diamond anniversary Sentinel of Liberty!

Remember back when Captain America gave up on the Captain America identity to become Nomad? In that post we teased the hows and whys for a future date and here they are! The classic “Secret Empire” storyline ran from CAPTAIN AMERICA #169176 in 1974 thanks to writers Steve Englehart and Mike Friedrich along with artist Sal Buscema.

Originally part of Hydra, the Secret Empire works in the shadows to overthrow the government and garner as much power as possible. Though the group debuts in TALES TO ASTONISH #81, they later mount an incredibly complicated plan that includes tarnishing Cap’s good name, inserting the original Moonstone as a new hero, and even kidnapping a variety of mutants for a mysterious project.

Along the way, Falcon and Leila fly off with Black Panther for some technological advancements, the Secret Empire frames the Star-Spangled Avenger for crimes against the very law he vows to protect, and both heroes have a run-in first with Banshee and then Professor X and the original X-Men. Later, Steve and Sam infiltrate the Secret Empire in civilian guises where they come across the plan to siphon brain energy from mutants including Iceman, Beast, Havok, Mastermind and others.

Captain America (1968) #170

Captain America (1968) #170

What is Marvel Unlimited?

Before long, Cap proves more powerful than his Secret Empire captors before taking down their pet hero Moonstone. Feeling victorious, our hero chases down the evil group’s leader Number One and unmasks him. As it turns out, a trusted, high-ranking government official hides under that hood, but also a cowardly one who decides to end his own life instead of facing his crimes.

As the last issue of the saga opens, Steve declares, “Captain America must die!” thinking that he represents a sham. After recounting his origin, he talks with both Thor and Iron Man who encourage their fellow Avenger to stick with it. Even with all that support, he ultimately decides at the end of the issue that his alter ego must indeed perish!

Of course, we know how that turns out as Steve takes a short hero break before creating the Nomad identity and eventually realizing that he’s the only man fit to wield the shield. No matter how corrupt the country’s government might be, he still represents the ideals and the dreams of the people who make up this great nation. With that in mind, what makes him give up the identity in the late 80’s? Come back soon to find out!

Cap Declassified

Even though Sam Wilson joined on as co-headliner with 1971’s CAPTAIN AMERICA #134, he didn’t come into possession of the now-iconic red wings until #170. Instead of turning to some of Cap’s pals in the Avengers, he gets in touch with Black Panther who builds the “incredibly light, but super-strong, glider-wings” that also feature jet tips, solar batteries, and neuro-circuitry for better control. He immediately puts them to good use in saving his girlfriend Leila and helping Cap fight the male Moonstone and the mutant Banshee.

Next, Steve Rogers gives up his well-known secret identity once again in the pages of the epic CAPTAIN AMERICA #332-350 by Mark Gruenwald, Kieron Dwyer, Tom Morgan and the gang. 

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Jack Kirby takes over and steers the Star-Spangled Avenger and Falcon on a deadly mission!

Every day we celebrate Captain America’s 75th anniversary by looking deep into the Marvel Unlimited archives and going through some of Steve Rogers’ most thrilling adventures. Happy diamond anniversary Sentinel of Liberty!

Jack Kirby brought Captain America to life in his very first appearance back in 1941 and, like any proud poppa, constantly returned to shepherd his creation through a variety of important life events. He drew Cap’s triumphant re-emergence in AVENGERS #4, recounted many early days for the character in TALES OF SUSPENSE and signed on to write, draw and edit CAPTAIN AMERICA starting with issue #193 in 1976.

To kick things off, “The King” puts not just our hero and his partner Falcon in danger, but all of America as the Bicentennial looms large, making an excellent target for evil-minded individuals.

Running from #193-200, the “Madbomb” story introduces the title weapon which literally drives everyone in the vicinity crazy. Though only exposed to a smaller version, Cap and Falcon understand just how dangerous the much larger one called Big Daddy will be as it threatens the lives of everyone in the U.S.A.

While the government exposes our heroes to Madbomb energy in an effort to immunize them, the reader meets Mr. Taurey who blames Cap’s ancestor—also named Steve Rogers—for destroying England’s chances of winning the war and thus ruining the lives of aristocrats like himself by killing the elder Taurey in a duel.

Captain America (1968) #193

Captain America (1968) #193

  • Published: January 10, 1976
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: September 17, 2008
What is Marvel Unlimited?

As it turns out Taurey’s part of a plot called the Elite that intends to set aristocrats up above the rest of society by destroying part of it with the title weapon and also changing “lower” people into mutates who will work to support the higher ups. This, of course, does not sit well with Steve and Sam who continue fighting against those who wish to oppress others.

After facing a variety of threats including Taurey’s appallingly conceited daughter, an armored skateboard competition, and bullet-headed henchmen, Cap and Falcon show up to the party where they drop the hammer and put a stop to the machinations. As Falcon destroys Big Daddy, Cap faces off against Taurey and even agrees to a duel!

Always one to keep his finger on the pulse of the times and pop culture, Kirby incorporates so many different elements into this tale including romance, war, super espionage, death traps, the Civil Rights movement, misunderstood monsters, Bicentennial fever, and even skateboard roller derby!

Cap Declassified

For even more Kirby-created Cap and Falcon goodness that we just don’t have enough time to cover, do yourself a favor and read CAPTAIN AMERICA #201-205. The issues feature our title heroes facing threats like the Night People, the Mad, Mad Dimension, crazy monsters, brainwashed partners, and a monster called Agron all in the Mighty Marvel Manner!                         

Next, every big name in comics stops by to help Steve Rogers celebrate a huge milestone in CAPTAIN AMERICA #600!

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Captain America's high-flying compatriot joins the fight!

The Falcon soars into “Marvel Contest of Champions,” Redwing in tow and ready to take on all comers. Kabam Art Director Gabriel Frizzera and Game Designer Justin Ostensen dropped by to talk about Cap’s staunchest ally and how to get the most out of the aerial ace.

Marvel.com: Sam Wilson’s ready to round out the “Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War” cast in “Contest of Champions.” Gotta say he looks awesome.

Gabriel Frizzera: Hats off to the Marvel Cinematic team, who did a fantastic job updating Falcon’s classic suit. Our artists used their design as a base to create our version of Sam Wilson.

Marvel.com: What were some of the things you wanted to focus on when bringing Falcon into the game?

Gabriel Frizzera: Of course flying was the main thing we wanted to get right. The arenas in “Contest of Champions” are somewhat contained, so Falcon wouldn’t be able to do all the crazy aerial acrobatics he does in the movies. But we wanted to keep the “Human Fighter Jet” spirit of the character, so we looked at some of the signature moves he does in “Marvel’s Captain America: Winter Soldier” and “Civil War,” and adapted them to our gameplay. The interplay between his highly maneuverable wings and his arsenal of weapons—and of course Redwing— was the main focus.

Marvel.com: Can you tell us a little about his abilities? How does Redwing fit into his kit?

Justin Ostensen: Falcon’s abilities are based around two primary concepts: Offensive capabilities to take down enemies quickly and efficiently, and support abilities to help out in tough fights, and to make the rest of his team better. Redwing, in addition to providing a strafing run in Falcon’s Special 3 attack “Tango Down,” helps by providing the new ability Recon.

Marvel.com: What does Recon do? And with Incinerate and Bleed it seems like Sam has more than a few ways to bring the pain.

Justin Ostensen: Recon is a brand new unique ability that lets Falcon with the help of Redwing Lock On to his opponents after scanning them. This allows Falcon to bypass his enemy’s abilities while he’s launching attacks for a short while. Any enemy that triggers effects like Regeneration, Armor Up, or Static Shock as a result of being struck, won’t be able to do so at all while Redwing is Locked On. Couple this with Incinerate and Bleed, and Falcon is well set to keep his opponent’s abilities shut down while he deals out some strong damage over time effects.

Marvel.com: Who is Falcon best suited flying with?

Justin Ostensen: Falcon is primarily a support character in the films, and we wanted to tap into that with his synergies. As a result, each of Falcon’s synergies is actually a double synergy that can be activated with one of two Champions. Ant-Man, The Vision, Black Widow, Black Panther, Captain America, Captain America WW2, War Machine, and Hawkeye are all possible teammates.

Marvel.com: And when can we take him to into battle for ourselves?

Justin Ostensen: Falcon has been assisting Cap in his war against Tony Stark and is ready to fly into the fray any moment now. Keep an eye on in-game messaging and arenas to see when you can pick up Sam Wilson and Redwing for yourself.


Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more “Marvel Contest of Champions” news and interviews!

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Check out all the great gear inspired by the hit film from Matchless!

By Josh Weiss

It’s time to choose a side… with your wardrobe. Ever wanted to dress like Steve Rogers, Sam Wilson or Natasha Rominoff? Well, now you can with apparel inspired by the Marvel Cinematic Universe from Matchless’s Marvel’s ‘Captain America: Civil War’ line. 

The ‘Captain Jacket Celebration’ is a timeless leather jacket that looks just like the one Cap wears in the movies. The sand brush treatment gives it a look so aged you’ll swear it was also frozen in ice for 70 years. To complete your patriotic look, go with the ‘Captain America Jeans,’ semi-ripped denim and patched with American flag themed fabric.

However, if you’re more in favour of the Sokovia Accords, try the ‘Stark Jeans,’ semi-ripped black denim patched with a black-and-white American flag themed fabric. 10/10 Iron Men approve of these jeans!  And you know what will go great with them? The ‘Stark Jacket’ made of partially ventilated Matchless leather.

If soaring through the skies is more your speed, how about the ‘Falcon Jacket’ made with soft Nappa leather and magnetic closures on the top front pockets? And for the femme fatales among you, there’s the ‘Natasha Jacket,’ a super soft suede trench coat inspired by the deadly Black Widow herself!

Visit Matchless for more info.

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Choose Captain America or Iron Man for this multi-path adventure!

Choose a side in “Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2” and fight with either Captain America or Iron Man in the latest Spec Ops event. “MAA2” Lead Game Designer Donovan Kennedy dropped by to give us the skinny on the event and some tips and tricks to get through it without scratching your shield.

Marvel.com: With all the Civil War madness happening across Marvel Games right now, players can still sink their teeth into the currently ongoing Civil War Spec Ops event right?

Donovan Kennedy: Definitely. Since this special Event is basically two full Spec Ops, each with their own Hero reward we decided to make it available for around double the time of a regular Spec Op. I’ve already seen a lot of Falcons and Winter Soldiers running around the game, and there’s still time to get yours!

Marvel.com: And we’re still choosing sides? Team Cap and Team Iron Man?

Donovan Kennedy: After the initial introduction into the unique story players have to make a commitment to either join Iron Man in bringing Cap and Bucky to justice, or join Cap in his crusade to clear Bucky’s name and try to reveal the true evil behind the scenes. The choice is permanent until you complete that side’s version of the Spec Op, and many heroes will be restricted so make sure you make the right choice!

Marvel.com: What kind of rewards are we looking at for each side?

Donovan Kennedy: Two awesome heroes from the new Captain America movie are rewards: Falcon for completing Cap’s storyline and Winter Soldier for completing Iron Man’s. Once you fully complete a storyline you are able to go back and attempt the other side’s story, and an archive key is required to access the second story. Once a side is completed you will have permanent access to that side’s storyline, even after the free access has expired.


Marvel.com: Are there any particular heroes that perform really well in any of these missions? Any suggestions for who we should be taking into battle?

Donovan Kennedy: Well having a wide range of heroes is key. As choosing a side locks out a certain pool of heroes you might end up playing with heroes you may not have concentrated on. The S.H.I.E.L.D. agents that you battle and all the bosses have very fast actions, and I found a lot [of] efficiency with my heroes that inflict “bleeding”—the enemies end up knocking themselves out because they attack so much

Marvel.com: And how do players like the Spec Ops events? This is the first worldwide event right?

Donovan Kennedy: Correct, this is the first major worldwide event. We’ve heard lots of positive things from players and some really entertaining twitch streamers like Kurtstable, and the From the Helicarrier podcast have really helped drive the player engagement and provided a lot of great feedback.

Marvel.com: Anything else we need to know?

Donovan Kennedy: Just remember the Spec Op won’t have open access forever, so be sure to get in and earn your free hero. And if you haven’t seen Falcon and his drone, Redwing, come check him out. He’s awesome.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more “Marvel Avengers Alliance 2” news and interviews!

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See what critics are saying about 'Captain America: Civil War' and see the film in theaters Friday!

Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War” hits theaters Friday and critics love the impressive action and intense emotional conflicts between beloved characters! See what critics have to say about the film below and buy tickets now to see the film in theaters Friday.

“Captain America: Civil War” finds Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) leading the newly formed team of Avengers in their continued efforts to safeguard humanity. But after another incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability, headed by a governing body to oversee and direct the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers, resulting in two camps—one led by Steve Rogers and his desire for the Avengers to remain free to defend humanity without government interference, and the other following Tony Stark’s (Robert Downey Jr.) surprising decision to support government oversight and accountability. Learn more below!

Buy tickets now to see “Captain America: Civil War” in theaters Friday! Follow @CaptainAmerica on Twitter and like “Captain America: Civil War” on Facebook for all the latest news and updates.

“’Captain America: Civil War’ marks a watershed moment in the vaunted annals of comic book cinema: Finally, a big budget super hero sequel that manages to be both effortlessly entertaining and utterly sobering, instead of just one of those things.”

The Daily Beast

 

Governments demand accountability from the Avengers in Marvel's 'Captain America: Civil War,' in theaters May 6!

Governments demand accountability from the Avengers in Marvel’s ‘Captain America: Civil War,’ in theaters May 6!

“’Captain America: Civil War’ is a tight action thriller that works on its own, but when taken as the latest chapter in an unprecedented experiment in longform storytelling, it’s a brilliant chapter, one that makes everything that went before seem better if only because it was all leading to this pinnacle.”

Birth.Movies.Death.

 

“’Civil War’ is effective thanks to a focus on character, with the film’s extended roster serving to explore and underline absorbing ideas about family, friendship, and the use of power. As big as this movie is, ‘Captain America: Civil War’ thrives on a smaller, human scale. Striking and consistently engaging, the Russos deftly craft compelling blockbuster entertainment out of a moral and emotional conflict, and that’s more impressive than any overblown display of loud and vulgar power.”

The Playlist

 

“’Captain America: Civil War’ is an example of how these films are more than just simple good guy/bad guy power fantasies, but only if you treat the characters and the audience with equal respect.”

HitFix

“Previous movies have had issues balancing the youthful banter and scientific confidence of the comic book Wall-Crawler, but [Tom] Holland nails the role in every aspect.”

USA Today


“…’Civil War’ generously gives everyone in the cast just the right amount to do, whether it’s showcasing their gee-whiz smashy-smashy gifts during one bravura battle royal set at the Leipzig airport, or allowing them to have a slower beat of character development that one assumes is the main reason for serious actors to sign on to these CGI behemoths…”

Entertainment Weekly

“’Captain America: Civil War’ feels like a pinnacle for Marvel…This is the best Marvel movie so far. This is not hyperbole… This is as close as things come to ‘super hero movie perfection.’”

Uproxx

 

“…proves as remarkable for its dramatic coherence and thematic unity as for its dizzyingly inventive action sequences; viewers who have grown weary of seeing cities blow up ad nauseam will scarcely believe their luck at the relative restraint and ingenuity on display.”

Variety

“[Robert] Downey [Jr.], whose ace timing and effortless snark make him the movie’s chief comic relief, also provides pivotal emotional chords.”

The Hollywood Reporter

“[Chris] Evans, meanwhile, further hones a role he’s effortlessly owned for five movies now, pushing Steve to impressive new depths and reminding us that his straight arrow still has a dangerous edge.”

Empire

T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) stands tall in Marvel's 'Captain America: Civil War,' in theaters May 6!

T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) stands tall in Marvel’s ‘Captain America: Civil War,’ in theaters May 6!

“At the center of ‘Captain America: Civil War’ is a fight scene so thrilling that it must be seen to be believed. We like to think that we have already perfected the super hero genre, or at least that we’ve got it down to a theoretical science, but we sometimes forget that there a lot of things that comic books can do that movies can’t. Or at least that they couldn’t do until very recently.”

Crave Online

“…it can be said with confidence that the three [Captain America] movies come together to create the greatest super hero trilogy of all time. The new movie is equally thrilling, fun, engaging, emotional, smart, and thought-provoking, and really everything you want from summer entertainment.”

CinemaBlend

“Anthony Mackie’s Sam Wilson can be relied upon for laugh-out-loud one-liners whenever he’s on screen, the Vision’s [Paul Bettany] stylish new wardrobe is comedy gold and Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang is huge fun in a relatively brief appearance – utterly enamoured by Steve Rogers and overjoyed just to have been invited along.”

Games Radar

“’Civil War’ strikes that admirable balance: serious-minded action that never forgets to indulge in serious fun.”

The Wrap

“It’s crazily surreal, engaging and funny in the best Marvel tradition, building to a whiplash-twist reveal that sports with the ever-present idea of duplicity and betrayal within the Avengers’ ranks themselves.”

The Guardian

“…this is Marvel at their best: a pacey, intelligent super-sized blockbuster and a roaringly fun night out.”

Time Out London

“…’Civil War’ also introduces the latest big-screen version of Spider-Man in advance of his stand-alone reboot (due in 2017), and as perfectly depicted with youthful vigor by newcomer Tom Holland (‘The Impossible’), he virtually swings off with the whole movie.”

Access Hollywood

Ideals collide in Marvel's 'Captain America: Civil War,' in theaters May 6!

Ideals collide in Marvel’s ‘Captain America: Civil War,’ in theaters May 6!

“The action is incredibly impressive, the cinematography is frenetic and visceral, and each of the heroes gets to shine in his or her own way—even the ones who aren’t in it that much. But the biggest achievement of directors Joe and Anthony Russo and screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely is that they made sure that the story is contingent on characters almost exclusively.”

Nerdist

“…thanks to the extraordinary engineering work of screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely and directors Anthony and Joe Russo, this film keeps moving, never losing its sense of purpose.”

GQ (UK)

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Sam Wilson makes his big hero debut as Steve Rogers finds himself trapped in the Red Skull's body!

Every day we celebrate Captain America’s 75th anniversary by looking deep into the Marvel Unlimited archives and going through some of Steve Rogers’ most thrilling adventures. Happy diamond anniversary Sentinel of Liberty!

Can you imagine meeting your future best friend during one of your worst moments? How about while being trapped inside the body of your most loathsome enemy? That’s exactly what happened when Steve Rogers first encountered Sam Wilson in CAPTAIN AMERICA #117.

A few issues earlier, in CAPTAIN AMERICA #115—written by Stan Lee with John Buscema artwork—the Red Skull surprised Captain America by appearing in his rented room complete with Cosmic Cube. After explaining how he came across yet another reality-warping box, Skull performs the ultimate body-swap, placing his consciousness in the hero’s body and vice versa. To add insult to injury, the villain then calls Agent 13 in so her true love can experience the hatred she feels towards the Red Skull first hand.

Not content with simple degradation, Skull plays plenty of games with our hero while also walking the world in his skin, enjoying the pleasures of being the America’s Sentinel of Liberty in issues penciled by Gene Colan. Steve eventually finds himself on a tropical island where he faces the Skull’s former agents the Exiles. They quit the Red Skull fan club after he used them to find a new Cube only to employ it to send them to this mostly forgotten place.

Captain America (1968) #117

Captain America (1968) #117

  • Published: September 10, 1969
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: April 07, 2009
  • Penciller: Gene Colan
  • Cover Artist: Gene Colan
What is Marvel Unlimited?

After an initial tussle with the villains comes to a close thanks to an attacking bird, Steve realizes that the Skull face he wears is actually a mask. He removes it and quickly uses earthen clay to come up with a disguise in case the Exiles know what Skull truly looks like. Not long after he meets Sam Wilson, a Harlem resident who relocated to the island for work, but quickly balked at the employer’s terrible treatment of the locals.

Now a freedom fighter who utilizes the strong connection he shares with his falcon Redwing, Sam stands just a step or two away from full-on superheroism. Recognizing his new ally’s abilities and bravery, Cap trains Sam in the art of hand to hand combat while the natives help put together his original green costume.

Making short work of their immediate foes in CAPTAIN AMERICA #118, Cap and Falcon come to face the Skull at his behest. Soon after arriving, the villain gives Captain America his body back which understandably surprises Sam. Still, the novice hero teams well with the veteran to take down the Skull as well as M.O.D.O.K. who pops up in an effort to claim the Cosmic Cube for himself. Winning the day with some unexpected aid from A.I.M., the duo realizes they have a nice rapport that will take center stage in CAPTAIN AMERICA before too long.

Cap Declassified

As pointed out in this issue, Red Skull last held the Cosmic Cube in TALES OF SUSPENSE #81, which was covered in a previous Saluting Captain America. Between that issue and this story, Namor discovered the Cube at the bottom of the sea in AVENGERS #40 only after Hercules foolishly tipped him to its existence. The King of the Seas uses the object in a rematch with the Avengers, but Wasp notices he reshaped it into a necklace and snaps it from his neck. The all-powerful gem falls into a hole where Mole Man happens upon it, but tosses it aside thinking it a useless bauble. Part of that Cube returned to menace Captain America when A.I.M. utilized it in the creation of the Super Adaptoid as seen in TALES OF SUSPENSE #82-84. In other words, the Cube sure got around in the early days!

Next time, Captain America must team up with his greatest foe to save the world in Operation: Rebirth, a story by Mark Waid and Ron Garney that spanned CAPTAIN AMERICA #444-448.

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