A Captain Britain seasonal story, ” Should Auld Acquaintance.”

As Christmas gets ever closer I thought it would be interesting to look at a seasonal Captain Britain story, and a quick scan through my Captain Britain omnibus soon located the ideal festive frolic.

The tale in question is “Should Auld Acquaintance,” from Captain Britain issue 14 published in February 1986, Alan Davis handled the writing and art while Mark Farmer did the inks.

Captain Britain 14 Cover
Our Story opens on Christmas Eve as Captain Britain and Meggan relax in their lighthouse, however this being a comic book story nothing perfect lasts and their celebrations are interrupted by the arrival of their old nemesis Inspector Dai Thomas. Who was very lucky to make it judging by the weather.

Captain Britain 14 intro

Rather than cause trouble – despite his claiming to know Captain Britain’s secret identity – Thomas has come to ask for help, it seems there have been a series of grisly murders of criminals in Glasgow, 27 in all, all carried out at speed with terrible mutilation. Ah there’s nothing to give you that joyful festive tingle like a few brutal murders, please stick with the story it does cheer up – eventually.

Meanwhile Captain UK has just had her Christmas ruined by Roma who has told her that her presence on Captain Britain’s Earth is causing the birth of Warpies – deformed children with super powers. Captain UK must leave but she has nowhere to go as her home dimension and husband were destroyed by the Fury. Are you still not seeing the Christmas cheer? Please bear with me as this story gets darker before the happy ending comes.

Captain Britain 14 Roma and Captain UK

We move forward to Christmas Day and return to the lighthouse where at Thomas’ request Cap is pretending to be a mobster in the hope of luring the killer to him. His disguise leaves a lot to be desired, still you’ve got to love that hat. Luckily Meggan is a lot better at changing her appearance.

Captain Britain 14 Captain britain gangster

Meanwhile at Cap’s old ancestral seat of Braddock Manor also home to the Warpies and his sister Betsy, supercomputer Mastermind disguised as a butler named Jeeves – don’t ask it’s a long story – is concerned. It seems Emma, the Braddock’s faithful maid is terminally ill, and Jeeves wishes to make her limited time a happy one and secure a bright future for the Warpies that doesn’t involve government control. Incidentally Emma is famous for saving Cap from Mastermind totally by accident, you can see that story here.

Anyway back to the main plot Cap and Meggan arrive in Glasgow and proceed to smash-up the city and put fear into its underbelly in the hope of drawing the killer out.

Captain Britain 14 Captain britain karate chop

Back at Braddock Manor love is in the air for Betsy as despite her blindness her latent psychic powers are developing, and Jeeves has plans to take Emma away from it all while still safeguarding the Warpies.

The story then shifts to New Years Eve as Cap, Meggan and Thomas believing they have drawn enough attention to lure the killer go on a stake out. While they wait old grievances are aired and cleared.

Captain Britain 14 Captain britain and Thomas make up

This is a great page so well handled by Davis, a lot of mistakes between protagonists in comics are only solved by them beating the living hell out of each other. But not here, instead we have two rational people admit they made mistakes and become friends through this.

Things are also looking up for Captain UK who finds Roma has for once used her time and mind manipulation powers for good to reset continuity, so Captain UK is reunited with her husband. This is a nice move on the part of Roma who along with her father Merlin has been responsible for a lot of grief for anybody putting on a Captain Britain uniform.

Captain Britain 14 Captain Uk happy ending

Meanwhile at the stake out as midnight strikes the killer is revealed.That evil-looking face and slashing tentacles seem to me to be inspired by monsters from Japanese mythology, and as it attacks Davis leaves us in no doubt as to its powerful menace.

Captain Britain issue 14 fight

Luckily Cap saves the day with a well-timed punch.

Captain Britain 14 Captain britain punch out

And the story ends with a happy ending for all as…

Captain Britain issue 14 never the end

Captain UK and her husband bring justice to their dimension, Betsy’s in love, the Warpies are well cared for, Emma enjoys the rest of her life and Cap and Meggan get some well-earned rest.

That last panel leaves you with a warm glow doesn’t it, but just why is this story so continuity heavy and published late for the festive season it centers around?

Well this story was to be Captain Britain’s last book with him as the main star until he joined Excalibur a year later – and that was a mixed bag of adventures – knowing so Davis has tried his best to tie up a lot of loose ends; some of which had been hanging around since Alan Moore was on the book. A nice touch is that the stories title and the seasonal setting give more meaning to the plot, and as we move from an old to a new year the characters move nicely from an old to a new life. The positions our heroes find themselves in seem logical, and it is a tribute to Davis story that nothing feels out of character or convoluted.

As Davis pencils his own script the whole transition is lovingly rendered and his going solo as writer/artist is a foreshadowing of his excellent Excalibur run a few years later.

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Captain Britain in Avengers 39. Let the ass kicking commence.

Our coverage of Captain Britain in Avengers Time Runs Out continues today with Cap popping up in Avengers issue 39. Things have been a bit quiet for Captain Britain in this Marvel event, but today he’s back with a bang.

Please be aware this article includes spoilers for this week’s Avengers 39, if you haven’t read the issue yet then do not carry on reading after the picture.

Avengers 39 Captain Britain

 

This whole issue is the fight followers of Time Runs Out have been waiting for as the Illuminati square up against SHIELD, and boy was it worth the wait.

Reed Richards lures SHIELD to a combat zone of the Illuminati’s choosing and allows his fellow members Captain Britain included to just kick ass, but what’s Cap armed with.

Avengers 39 Captain Britain and Excalibur

 

Is that Excalibur ? I think so but regardless Cap puts it too good use.

Avengers 39 Captain Britain and Excalibur 2

The narration is Reed Richard’s commentary as he sends the Illuminati into what basically ends up as SHIELD getting the crap beaten out of them, but back to Cap.

It’s hard to see in this issue but he still seems to me to have only one eye. though he has taken time to trim his beard. As for Excalibur we know Cap is a powerhouse so why he chooses to use the sword over his super powers isn’t made clear, unless it’s to prevent the loss of innocent life – SHIELD robots being the exception!

All this and a great cliffhanger ending add up to another great installment of Time Runs Out, with Captain Britain due to feature heavily in Avengers 30 – covered here – I’m loving the series and the Cap love.

Is that Excalibur Cap is armed with ? Are you enjoying Avengers Time Runs Out? let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

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So just what happened to Captain Britain’s eye in Avengers Time Runs Out?

As New Avengers issue 30 draws ever closer speculation is starting to mount over just what happened to Captain Britain’ eye. So today I’m going to look back at the Time Runs Out story and clues so far and see if eye – groan – can figure out just what happened to Cap.

The first clue lies in when we see Captain Britain’s debut in New Avengers 25 looking like this.

Captain Britain New Avengers 25

At the time a lot of people myself included focused on Cap’s look and didn’t take much notice of what he said. Look at the smaller panel and see how Captain Britain is pointing at his eye as he says, ” What’s in here is too important to lose. “

Now is he referring to the Illuminati’s current base or what’s behind his eyepatch?

Another clue was given away in Avengers 37 when Captain America discusses blackmailing Captain Britain and brings up his SHIELD file.

Captain Britain Avengers 37

Why don’t SHIELD know about Cap’s missing eye? I believe it’s because the circumstances of its loss are secret and whoever did it didn’t want Captain America to know, almost as if it’s something the Illuminati want kept under wraps to help them if their situation gets desperate.

The cover to the forthcoming New Avengers 30 gives us another clue.

Captain Britain New Avengers 30

Now notice Cap is already bearded suggesting he’s be on the run some time, but his eye is damaged with no patch. So did he lose it in an other worldly battle with the Captain Britain Corps, or is it a weapon that has just been unleashed, hence the reason why so many dead heroes surround Cap?

In a previous post’s comments Ads drew a comaprison between Norse god Odin and Captain Britain, now Odin sacrificed one of his eyes for wisdom if I remember my mythology correctly; so has Captain Britain done the same and allowed Reed Richards to implant a super weapon in his head? Avengers writer Jonathan Hickman has never been a person for going for an easy answer, so only time will tell if I’m right or not and bearing in mind my Spider-UK predictions were totally wrong my thoughts here could be rubbish as well!

What do you think happened to Captain Britain’s eye, sound off in the comments below.

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What do you get a Captain Britain fan for Christmas?

As I type this Christmas is drawing ever closer and there are important decisions to be made, such as what do you get a Captain Britain fan for Xmas?

Well worry no more I’ve scanned the internet – well eBay – to bring you my top five gift ideas for the Cap fan in your life, so let’s get started.

First off why not start with a practical gift but also one that will let a Cap fan proudly show their allegiance to Marvel’s greatest hero – a t-shirt.

Official Captain Britain t shirt tattoos not included

This one doesn’t come with tattoos but the classic Alan Davis Cap pose looks great.

Captain Britain does the time warp t shirt

I’m not too sure about this one however, looks like Cap’s doing the time warp, let’s move quickly on.

How about some original Captain Britain art? This Herb Trimpe page from Captain Britain issue 21 is going for about two hundred pounds.

Herb Trimpe Captain Britain original artwork

It’s a nice scene as well with Captain Britain revealing his identity to his friends.

Too expensive? How about some giant but cheap Cap wall art.

Captain britain wall art

Twelve pounds could get you this  65″ x 24″ glossy heavy paper poster of Captain Britain, why you might choose to stick it over your bed is anyones guess, but it does look great.

Last but by no means least is the hugely desirable but quite expensive Walmart exclusive Captain Britain action figure.

Marvel Legends Captain Britain

The figure comes with an exclusive comic – actually an Excalibur reprint – and a piece of Giant Man’s leg; this beauty often goes for upwards of thirty pounds not including postage. Sure you can buy it cheaper out of the box but that’s not how I like my action figures, but I’m a fussy sort!

So what Captain Britain gifts do you want for Christmas? Let Santa know in the comments below.

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Chris Claremont talks Captain Britain/Excalibur movie

Over on the Hollywood Reporter website, X-Men scribe and Captain Britain creator Chris Claremont has been talking Marvel movies, and has stated his opinion on a Captain Britain/Excalibur film.

Talk turned to Cap and Excalibur when Claremont was asked about possible directions for new Marvel films, to which he replied:

” With Excalibur, you have the option of leaping literally out of this world – I mean they have a pan-dimensional train, for heaven’s sake – to other star systems or possibly even other dimensions.”

chris claremont and captain britain

With Claremont behind a possible Captain Britain/Excalibur movie it raises this blog’s hopes that one day Cap might come to movie theatres. The use of Excalibur as a vehicle to launch a Cap franchise is a great idea as they can literally travel anywhere and do anything, leaving scripting possibilities wide open.

Maybe the film will be like my previous speculation on what a Captain Britain movie might be like which you can read here or here.

What do you think of Claremont’s views? Do you want an Excalibur movie? Sound off in the comments below.

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When Captain Britain and ROM crossed over.

Years ago when I was a bigger Captain Britain comic collector than I was now I used to love to chase down Cap crossovers. As this was before the internet reared its silicon head my bible for all things Cap was the Overstreet comics pricing guide.

Overstreet was my guide of choice as among its many listings it often took the time to tell the reader if a certain character could be found in another comic. Armed with the guide I bought if I remember correctly Ambush Bug comics that were reputed to have Cerebus the Aardvark in, issues of 2000AD which featured the Sisters Of Mercy and issue 65 of ROM which the guide swore blind had a Captain Britain appearance.

What do you mean you’ve never heard of ROM, does this help?

Rom 65

Check out that great line up, Mantlo, Ditko and P.Craig Russell, but enough of that you want to see Captain Britain, so here he is.

Captain Britain in Rom 65

Yes appearing with Sinbad and Captain Ireland aka Shamrock, Cap rushes to help ROM fight the evil wraiths. To be honest it looks like Cap was caught out by the call to arms as he has forgotten his star sceptre, but it does look like he has been working out, so he should have no trouble in the fight? Well we’ll never know, as the panel above is the only time you see Captain Britain in ROM 65.

Do I care that I bought a comic to see Captain Britain and he is only in one panel? No, as if I remember correctly it cost about ten pence, which was hardly bank breaking then, and ROM is a fun read.

Sadly ROM was never reprinted due to copyright and ownership concerns, which means you can only hunt down the issue via eBay or back issue bins. It also means we will never get to see reprinted the issue of ROM where he teams up with Luke Cage in a sort of Shaft meets Robocop crossover.

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As there’s no Captain Britain in Time Runs Out this week here’s some puzzles to help you pass the time.

This week in Avengers 38 and New Avengers 26 Time Runs Out continues, but sadly without any Captain Britain appearances. So to help you pass the time until Cap does show up here are some puzzle pages from the pages of Seventies Captain Britain weekly.

captain britain shadow puzzle

I’m not sure how Cap lost his shadow and why you need to be careful finding it again but that tag line for next weeks puzzle of A Lion in Winter sounds intriguing doesn’t it?

captain britain maze puzzle

Oh it’s just a maze. Would Richard the Lionheart be afraid of it? Sadly that answer is lost to history, unlike the terrible lion pun.

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