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Essential Captain America, Vol. 1 (Essential Captain America #1)

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  457 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
The return of Captain America was one of the more unexpected events of the hurly-burly nascent days of the Marvel Universe. One of the company's original characters the World War II adventurer had been in limbo for years Now that super heros were popular again, though, the red white and blue superstar was revived and given new life suspended animation being cited as the ca ...more
Paperback, Marvel Essentials, 528 pages
Published by Marvel Comics Group (first published May 1st 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mike (the Paladin)
Jan 25, 2011 Mike (the Paladin) rated it really liked it
When I was 6 or 7 I was reading Superman and Batman. I read them in their various books for a while but when I was about 12 I found Captain America. It was 1964 or so and I had found my niche, my Comic book alter-ego. Other Marvel comics were great, I read Spiderman, I read the X-men, I liked Deardevil, but none of them (for me) approached Captain America.

I recounted this in my review of the Essential Avengers, the Avengers was (were) my second favorite comic book, why? Because for a long time f
I must admit that I am a fan of Marvel's Essential format, though it took me awhile to get there. I have always preferred my superheroes in colour, well comics in general to be honest, though the rare exceptions have always existed and grown more plentiful over the years I confess. But comics intended for colour format can get dull without the colour. However, having got over that barrier after a trip down memory lane with Claremont's X-Men and the fabulous Wolfman / Colan Dracula from the 70's ...more
Aug 02, 2011 Andrea added it
Shelves: graphic-novels
It's impossible to rate this...probably because it's so bad it's good. Kirby's drawings pop of the page with incredible motion and force, and Lee's writing is exuberant. Sure the plotlines are weak, the heroes consistently and miraculously get out of tight spots to win it all, every time, and sure it's not convincing. I deeply dislike the insular nationalism (my own fault for reading Captain America I know), and that episode where the Viet Cong general is a giant sumo wrestler? Good god. But I l ...more
Jan 23, 2011 Angel rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Cap. America fans, "old school" comics fans
If you are a fan of Captain America, you will probably like this. This is a compilation of early Captain America comics by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. The only major drawback to the collection is that it is in black and white; however, you do get a lot of comic in this volume. I think for readers today this can be a voyage down the good old days of comics when plots were simple (and fairly cheesy at times) but usually fun. You knew clearly who the good guys and the bad guys were. And they often wra ...more
In a collection called "Essential" Captain America, I was hoping for something like the first issue where he made an appearance, the first time Bucky makes an appearance, some of the original World War II comics. This seems to be a collection from a later time, and was completely random, as far as I could tell. There was no over-arching theme, which would be fine, but there were many hints that these were a tribute to the original comics and not the originals. I read a few, looked at the size of ...more
Adam Graham
Oct 30, 2013 Adam Graham rated it it was amazing
In Avengers #4, Captain America, the hero of World War II was found floating in ice in Suspended Animation. In Tales of Suspense #59, Captain America got his own series as one of two stories in Tales of Suspense magazine opposite Iron Man. In addition, Captain America took over Tales of Suspense in Issue 100 and the book was renamed Captain America and this book has Issues 100-102 plus a story from Issue 10 of the 1940s Captain America magazine.

The book goes through various stages. The first fou
Mark Short
Oct 18, 2016 Mark Short rated it it was amazing
A really entertaining nostalgia fest.
Aug 10, 2013 Fizzgig76 rated it really liked it
Reprints Tales of Suspense #59-99 and Captain America (1) #100-102 (November 1964-June 1968). Steve Rogers is a man reborn. Thawed from an icy grave by the Avengers, Steve finds himself trying to adjust to a world that is not his own. Returning to his guise of Captain America, Steve finds himself battling old villains like the Red Skull for the safety of the world and remembering his adventures during World War II with his old ally Bucky. The United States is threatened and both it and the world ...more
May 22, 2016 M rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics, superheroes
Whereas the Golden Age Captain America comics were fun, these really weren't that good. There were some fun throw-back stories that recreated or expanded on Cap's WWII adventures, but the stuff set in the 60s was pretty disappointing. For one thing, plots are often similar or downright recycled. Cap fights three Sleepers, giant robots made by the Red Skull to destroy Earth as revenge for the Nazis' defeat. And then a couple of years later, Cap fights the fourth Sleep, which has exactly the same ...more
Oct 20, 2008 Dan rated it really liked it
Good ol' Captain America. Evil ol' Red Skull. Silly ol' Nazi krauts. These Cap comics from the sixties may at first look and read like simple WWII propaganda for the kiddos--until you get a few issues into it, and you realize these are both a tribute and a criticism of the art form. That dynamite duo of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby add a level of complexity and imperfection to their hero in resurrecting Cap from his 1940s counterpart, when the propaganda effect was entirely intentional--the cover of ...more
Holden Attradies
Mar 30, 2012 Holden Attradies rated it really liked it
I usually have a hard time getting through the first volume of the really early Marvel stuff, but Captain America read more like a volume 2. And the more I've submersed my self in Marvel comics the more I've come to appreciate Cap and this volume helped that appreciation grow just a bit more. He's Marvel's paragon, but unlike superman his power comes more from raw skill than superhuman strength and powers.

Sure it was a little ridiculous how he ALWAYS got out of trouble at the last minute in an a
Rich Meyer
May 26, 2013 Rich Meyer rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2013
One of the volumes that almost deserve the "Essential" moniker, this black-and-white reprint follows the early Silver Age solo adventures of Captain America.

A good number of the stories (from Tales of Suspense) are set during World War II (done initially to alleviate any continuity problems in the Avengers and other Marvel Comics Cap was appearing). The art on all is excellent, with Jack Kirby, Gil Kane, and George Tuska handing some excellent work. The Red Skull is the prevalent bad guy in the
Aug 19, 2014 John rated it really liked it
The recent Marvel Avengers movies piqued my interest in the origins of Cap, so I picked this up through interlibrary loan and began to read. Captain America starts out as a propaganda figure, but quickly morphs (through reboots) into a "man out of time." His heart is in the simple good guy v. bad guy battles of WWII, but he now lives in the 1960s, where friends become enemies and vice versa.

There are a lot of missteps here, mainly with horrible villains (the Tumbler? Come on!), but the issues th
Jon Boon
Mar 24, 2014 Jon Boon rated it really liked it
Picked this one up halfway through, where it carries on from Cap masterworks vol 1. It has the same issues with implausible heroic escapes and jingoism, but the writing and artwork is maturing nicely in the second half of this book.

Overall I'd recommend the Masterworks series over the Essentials. It works out a bit more expensive, but the sometimes 'splodgy' black and white reproduction on cheap paper can make the Essentials a little hard to follow in places. The colour Masterworks are beautifu
Andrewc Ehs
Dec 16, 2013 Andrewc Ehs rated it really liked it
Tales Of Supsense #59-99 are gathered in this book. This is when Cap first takes on A.I.M. (Advanced Idea Mechanics) & reencounters some of his older enemies like HYRDA & Batroc the Leaper. Tales Of Suspense #67 is M.O.D.O.K.'s first appearance & I'm glad they included it in here. I like how the A.I.M. base is underwater, gives a fortress-like appearance. This book revies the elements that made Cap who he is: Awesome, heroic & the patriotic Avenger.
Dec 28, 2009 Jim rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
Well, like the other Marvel Essentials this one has some old issues written by Stan Lee. You have to love Stan. He had a good thing and he knew how to use it. The writing is heavy, campy, adolescent and full of exposition. Yet, it's a lot of fun (in small doses).

What I found most interesting was the development of Jack Kurby's artwork over the time period covered by this book.

In general these books are fun to read, a bit at a time.
PJ Ebbrell
Jul 11, 2012 PJ Ebbrell rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novesl
Jack Kirby returns to the character he and Joe Simon created int the 40's. A masterstroke of a man out of time and worry at the death of Bucky. Initially, the art shows over the period how his 'classic' style emerges. Even in black and white, the art is still stunning. There are a lot of stories, I had not read, so it was great read.

Fascinating to see how much of this history has been taken and then woven back into the Marvel's latest film.
Apr 22, 2009 Christopher rated it did not like it
Wow, this is some bad stuff.

This was a gift and I'm trying to get a feel for the real silver-age comics, but this is bad. I know Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are comic legends. However, having your villain say how nigh-inviciable he is on EVERY page is not characterization. Kirby seems like he has to get a shot of one of his futuristic weapons or circuitry boards in every issue or he'll be fired.

Maybe I'm just used to more modern stuff...and long-form comics at that.
William Tope
Jan 26, 2010 William Tope rated it it was ok
I understand the nostalgia involved but most of the stories just don't hold up anymore. Bought mainly for the art but a combination of black and white coupled with the poor paper quality left me unable to enjoy it. Early Captain America just doesn't hold up like some of the others like Fantastic Four.
Feb 12, 2015 Shelley rated it liked it
20+ straight issues of Captain America's return in the 1960s. It's super thick and the black and white makes the panels super dense, so it dragged. I mostly flipped through to dip in and out of stories. Loved seeing the introduction of Agent 13, was amused by the grand introductions of Stan Lee, Jack King and other writers/artists involved in each issue.
Cap's Silver Age reincarnation. There are flash backs to his Nazi-smashing days, but this volume also focuses on his early adventures with the adventures. He even shows up in Vietnam to slap around some Viet-Cong.
Christopher Dodd
Jan 22, 2011 Christopher Dodd rated it liked it
Shelves: comics
How many times can Stan Lee rephrase "Watch out! He fights like an Army!"?

The action here is fast and ridiculous as Cap fights the forces of tyranny (Nazis mostly) and falls in love with a girl (Agent 13?) but never bothers to learn her name.
Nov 01, 2009 Adam rated it really liked it
Good stuff, lots of Lee/Kirby. The early issues set in WWII are interesting but nto as good as the later issues when SHIELD, Sharon Carter (sorry, "Agent 13"), and some elaborate plans from the Red Skull, AIM, and Baron Zemo get involved.
Frank Taranto
Since I read a lot of these when they first came out, this was a fun trip down memory lane. Captain America always made me feel sad for him, as he was a man out of time.
Jul 30, 2012 Laryn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
This was awesome :) I only read about half of it since it's from the library, but well worth it. Highly recommended if you like Captain America or old comics.
Sep 27, 2009 Michael rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
Good, ole time silver age comics. Craziness, silliness, and crazy silly mustaches. Forget about the seriousness of comics and have some brainless fun!
Tom Shearer
Tom Shearer rated it really liked it
Mar 31, 2013
Graham Vingoe
Graham Vingoe rated it liked it
Jul 02, 2013
Paul rated it liked it
Jan 24, 2013
Gregory rated it really liked it
Sep 01, 2016
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Stan Lee (born Stanley Martin Lieber) is an American writer, editor, creator of comic book superheroes, and the former president and chairman of Marvel Comics.

With several artist co-creators, most notably Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, he co-created Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, the X-Men, Iron Man, the Hulk, Daredevil, the Silver Surfer, Dr. Strange, and many other characters, introducing complex,
More about Stan Lee...

Other Books in the Series

Essential Captain America (7 books)
  • Essential Captain America, Vol. 2
  • Essential Captain America, Vol. 3
  • Essential Captain America, Vol. 4
  • Essential Captain America, Vol. 5
  • Essential Captain America, Vol. 6
  • Essential Captain America, Vol. 7

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