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Captain America #269: Review

May 1982
J. M. DeMatteis, Mike Zeck

Story Name:

A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste!

Review & Comments

3 stars

Captain America #269 Review by (September 13, 2014)
Review: For a story designed to introduce new toy-based characters, this issue is better than it should have been. The Mad Thinker is the only one who comes off badly, poorly drawn to look fat and frazzled, though, mind you, he is not as stupid as usually portrayed; this time, the unforeseen factor in his calculations was something truly unforeseen: the Marauder. The soap-opera stuff at the beginning mainly foreshadows some future developments.

Comments: Title comes from the motto of the United Negro College Fund. First appearance of Team America, based on a line of toys by Ideal; from here they went into their own series which lasted twelve issues and then into NEW MUTANTS #5-8. When Marvel lost the license to the group, they were renamed the Thunderiders and appeared in THE THING #27-28—and that was their final appearance. The Marauder is a manifestation of the collective consciousness of the team members. Other historical personages in the town are Shakespeare, Plato, Lincoln, Confucius, Machiavelli, Socrates, and Nietzsche.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America #269 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

One morning Steve Rogers is having breakfast in Anna Kappelbaum’s kitchen along with pals Josh Cooper and Mike Farrel. The landlady gives Steve some advice about his awkward relationship with Bernie Rosenthal, and she becomes quite upset hearing about Neo-Nazis in the news. Steve lectures on the meaning of freedom and Bernie walks in; she and Steve apologize for their behavior over the impromptu "I love you" last issue. Steve has to run though….

He dons his Captain America togs and heads to Madison Square garden by bike to join Team America, a band of daredevil motorcycle showmen, for a charity gig. Everything goes well until a portal opens up in mid-air and a yellow giant steps out, seizes scientist Alfred Knopfler, and vanishes whence he came. As the portal closes Cap rides his cycle through, followed by Team America. The heroes find themselves teleported to a stereotypical small Midwestern town called Ponder; exploring, they encounter Mark Twain, Albert Einstein, and, on arrival at the town hall, many other great thinkers through the ages. The host then arrives—it’s the Mad Thinker. Team America fights the yellow android but are no match for the creature; Cap then takes it down with a shield blow to the back of the neck. The Thinker explains that he has created this village and peopled it with android replicas of great figures to stimulate his intellect now that he is retiring from crime. The catch is, he is also kidnapping contemporary brains to create androids of—and Captain America will soon join them. Cap is swiftly captured—but suddenly a black-clad biker called the Marauder crashes into the room, wrecks the scientific equipment and disappears. Team America then rushes in to fight the androids and defeat the Mad Thinker. Soon, Nick Fury arrives with a SHIELD mop-up team and the heroes go their separate ways….

Mike Zeck
John Beatty
Bob Sharen
Mike Zeck (Cover Penciler)
John Beatty (Cover Inker)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

Plus: Anna Kapplebaum, Bernie Rosenthal, Josh Cooper, Mike Farrel, Team America (Thunderiders).

> Captain America: Book info and issue index

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