Nine Thoughts on the ‘Captain America’ Trailer!

Captain America's fighting for truth, justice, the American way, and your money this summer.

William Bibbianiby William Bibbiani

After a brief, tantalizing Super Bowl teaser, Captain America: The First Avenger finally gets a full-sized trailer. And you know what? We like what we see:



Some thoughts from a film critic, comic book fan and Captain America enthusiast in particular:

1) The opening scene, in which a scrawny young Steve Rogers is refused the right to serve in World War II based on his obvious failings, brings to mind such iconic films as The General and Yankee Doodle Dandy. Unlike Dandy, alas, he probably won’t thrill the draft board with an elaborate dance routine in order to prove his worth. He’ll just have to become Captain America instead.

2) Establishing Steve Roger’s proficiency with a shield by showing that he once used a trash can lid in a similar fashion while getting his ass kicked in an alley feels like an unnecessary attempt to apologize to the audience for what neophytes may perceive as a non sequitur conceit. And since that last sentence sounded really, really pretentious, this second sentence will conclude with the word ‘poo.’

3) The film’s Rudy-ish take on Steve Rogers – he’s tried to enlist five times in five different cities to no avail – does a great job of establishing his dedication to his country. And unlike Rudy he has a damned good reason to be so obsessed, so we probably won’t ever question his sanity.

4) I’m beginning to suspect that they only cast Tommy Lee Jones because the rousing patriotic speech would ring false if an actor with less gravitas, and stern gravitas at that, would have made it seem hammy. That sounds like a critique, but it’s seems pretty reasonable to me.

5) If Tony Stark’s father worked on the Super Soldier program – which we now see that he did – it becomes a lot less plausible that the actual formula for creating Captain America would be lost after the death of Dr. Erskine. The movie might have a hurdle to overcome there.

6) That guy Steve Rogers saves from a sunken plane? Not Howard Stark. We called that one wrong in our analysis of the Super Bowl Teaser, and we’ll be the first to admit it. It would now appear that he’s the guy who kills Dr. Erskine.

7) Jones’s line, ‘The enemy… is not what you’d expect’ prepares us for some serious historical revisionism. Given that we now suspect the villains in the upcoming Avengers movie to be the Skrulls, it’s possible – unlikely, but possible – that they’re giving Captain America: The First Avenger the full Ultimate treatment, with World War II boiling down to extra-terrestrial involvement, or at more likely just a whole mess of sci-fi mumbo jumbo.

8) We like that Captain America uses an actual gun. It was probably tempting to keep one out of his hands to make him feel more superheroic, not to mention keep the rating down to a PG-13, but it’s a war, damn it, and the stakes are far too high to pussyfoot around with nothing more than a shield to stomp down Nazis. 

9) Captain America finally throws that shield though, and we’re not ashamed to geek out about it. Dude… Sweet.