Thank you Cap.

When I was 12 years old I was freshly into comic books and had numerous titles from X-Men, Batman, New Mutants, Avengers, Iron Man, Spider-Man and even Avengers WestCoast (yes that was a thing!)

I just couldn’t wait to see what adventures all of my heroes were going to get themselves into or what schemes the dastardly villains would concoct to become rich, or worse yet TAKE OVER THE WORLD!…or Universe whichever came first.

I’ve gone on many adventures in my 40 years with these amazing characters written by some of the most imaginative writers and artists to ever put pen to paper. And through it all there are many throw away characters such as “Plastic Man” and “Egghead”, but there are also some characters who have endured through generations. Batman, Superman, and of course Captain America.

I don’t remember the first time I saw or learned about Captain America, he just always was. As far back as I can remember there was always the red, white, and blue shield and the wings on the side of the blue mask. I will save you his storied history, but just know he was created by Joe Simon and the legendary Jack Kirby in the 1940’s.

Captain America or Steve Rogers was just a weak kid in a big and scary world that always believed in doing the right thing even if it meant retaliation, consequence, or shame. He was written to be the moral compass in a world that is so corrupt. With no rich parents, gizmos, or high intellect to speak of his superpower and motive was his unwavering heart and knowledge of right and wrong. Thankfully through chance he was given super abilities through the super soldier serum. Boasting super strength, resilience, and speed he was now the complete package….Almost. It’s only with the iconic red white and blue uniform is he truly the first Avenger!

I remember reading comics featuring Captain America throughout the years and seeing the unwavering stand he took against evil. He has stood beside the Avengers fighting evil both earthly and otherworldly. He has fought next to Deadpool (you read that right, and yes Deadpool loses his mind with the celebrity of Cap), he has been a war criminal in both the comic/film versions of Civil War. One of the greatest things I’ve seen Cap do was beat the Punisher to a pulp for shooting two unarmed mutants, even though the mutants were on the opposing side of the civil war. (Punisher deserved it and more) And finally I have seen him die in “The Death of Captain America”. This series takes place after Civil War as Cap is being prosecuted for his “war crimes”.

That’s the comic side of things. There are many adventures including Infinity Gauntlet/War, but this isn’t about them. He will live forever in the comics.

I’m writing this after reading actor Chris Evans tweet about thanking everybody for the last 8 years of playing Cap. Most people have taken this statement to mean he is finished with playing the role.

I’m writing because I feel Chris Evans took the character of Captain America and not only made him relevant in this day and age, but because he did such an impeccable job doing it. In all of his appearances in the Marvel Cinematic Universe Chris Evans has not only given consistent performances, but has really developed and matured Captain America to the point where you can’t differentiate the comic book representation and the film version.

From the wide eye’d scrawny Steve Rogers from Brooklyn getting pummeled by bullies for standing up for our troops, to the man who sees through all the politics and will not give into oppressive demands that would inevitably hinder the freedoms that he’s fought his whole life to protect, Cap truly exemplifies the arch that we should all go through in our lives.

Evans has shown Caps willingness to not only fight for beliefs and accept any repercussions for his stand, but as equally important is his ability to love his friends and stand by their sides through even the darkest times. He truly expresses how much friendship means to the least of these. Bucky and Tony Stark will always have a friend because Cap doesn’t see black and white.

This experience has made Chris Evans and icon and he has taken it in stride giving back to many children and charities and I wouldn’t expect anything less from Cap. I honestly believe that playing Captain America/Steve Rogers has truly made Evans grow as an actor because he’s had to truly delve into such turmoil and emotions that surrounds the character. And as someone who jumped into the MCU from another “Marvelverse” he’s been welcome every time he’s been on screen.

There was a time when Robert Downey Jr. was the star of the Avengers and rightfully so, but I could never imagine it without this version of Captain America, Chris Evans version of Captain America. I truly believe Evans has risen to the occasion and through the series of Avenger films has become Downey’s equal and such a GREAT moral compass and governor for Tony Starks own journey in the films! That evolution really is an actor committing to his craft and never once phoning it in.

And with that we will have to say goodbye, I understand why, but it’s always sad when such an iconic character has to hang up his shield. If Chris ever read this rambling I guess I would say Thank you Cap! Thank you Chris Evans for so many years of joy, heartache, excitement and adventure! I can only hope the joy you’ve brought the audiences is returned to you ten fold in your own life. If you ever wanted to achieve an iconic status in your life, congrats you are up there with the greats in cinema.

To quote Avengers “Aren’t the Stars and Stripes a little outdated?”

Nope. Not once since you put them on.