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Captain America #331: Review

Jul 1987
Mark Gruenwald, Paul Neary

Story Name:

Soldier, Soldier

Review & Comments

2.5 stars

Captain America #331 Review by (October 23, 2015)
Comments: Part four of four parts. Sharon Ventura was introduced as a female wrestler in THING #27, becoming the new Ms. Marvel in issue #35 of that title.

Review: I don’t often talk in superlatives but this issue has the worst art of any Cap comic in the original series. Now Vince Colletta was one of Marvel’s most prolific inkers because he was fast. When he took his time the results could be classic: check out his inking of Jack Kirby on THOR in the 60s. But his speed often resulted in sloppy work, and that’s what we have here. All detail is turned into thick lines, all the characters look the same, and backgrounds are often empty. Combined with a weak story (Captain America fights a big guy. Wow) the result is quite disappointing. Odd that such a weak issue should fall directly before the start of what many consider the best Cap arc of all time. It happens.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Captain America #331 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

The Shroud discovers Captain America performing CPR on his new partner D-Man and persuades Dr Karl Malus to try to reverse the augmentation treatment in hopes that D-Man will recover. First they free Power Broker’s other prisoner, new Ms. Marvel Sharon Ventura but it turns out she has been driven temporarily mad by the experiments performed on her and she tries to flee the building. Cap manages to dodge her attacks and calm her into cooperating. Cap confronts the Power Broker Curtiss Jackson to tell him he will answer for his crimes; Jackson retorts that Cap has committed a few crimes himself, making him a hypocrite….

Interlude: FBI agents Farber and McNulty report to the Commission on Superhuman Affairs that they cannot locate Captain America….

Malus’ ministrations over D-Man lead to an optimistic prognosis. As the police are called, Shroud takes that as the cue for Night Shift to fade off into the darkness. A military chopper appears with a squad of troops. On the ground, Lt. Michael Lynch informs Cap that they are here to arrest Curtiss Jackson. Cap senses something wrong, just as Ms Marvel runs out of the house denouncing Lynch as a partner of Jackson’s. Cap grabs Jackson and he and MM retreat to the mansion where she tells her story: Lynch manipulated her into the Power Broker’s clutches leading to her augmentation (full story in THING #35). Lynch brings out his big gun: a huge augmented soldier called G.I. Max. Cap engages his massive foe with judo and agility. Lynch tries to shoot Cap but a bullet ricochets off the shield and hits Max, who quickly dies from loss of blood….

An epilogue tells us what happens next to all of the characters and warns us of a major change in the next issue….

Paul Neary
Vince Colletta
Bob Sharen
Mike Zeck (Cover Penciler)
Bob McLeod (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

> Captain America: Book info and issue index

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