Marvel’s two Captain America comic book series are gearing up for a huge event storyline called ‘Cold War’ which sees The Marvel Universe become ensnared in Dimension Z. “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 is a prelude to the landmark storyline where several key figures are moving the pieces into place for the big story. Steve Rogers and his friends are trying to do battle with M.O.D.O.K. and pick up the pieces of their team after losing a friend. Does “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 continue the series confidently and feature enough foreshadowing to the upcoming ‘Cold War’ story? Find out in our review of “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11!
Written by Collin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing
Illustrated by Carmen Carnero
Colored by Nolan Woodard
Lettered by VC’s Joe Caramagna
Captain America and the new Invaders may be free from M.O.D.O.C.’s mind control, but they are not yet guaranteed their lives, and with the battle nearly won, the Outer Circle have arrived on the ground to collect their prize. It’s up to Steve Rogers to wrestle victory from the Power and finally end the Outer Circle’s invasion of Manhattan — but choices made at this critical point will alter Steve’s understanding of friendship and the stakes of his fight against the Outer Circle for good.
Collin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing approach the script in this issue with a fascinating composition. Essentially, readers finally get a wrap on the big battle between M.O.D.O.K. and Steve’s Invaders. The battle expertly uses so many of the Captain America characters across this issue. Kelly and Lanzing do a great job in the issue advancing plot threads with Steve as a character while teasing the next plot developments surrounding the Outer Circle. Despite the fact that Kelly and Lanzing have so many plot threads to explore in this issue, I never felt like “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 suffered because of the wide focus of the title as a whole.
Carmen Carnero’s work in “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 is incredibly detailed. Carnero’s line perfectly captures the ambiguity that Bucky Barnes feels in the opening of the issue. The way Carnero transitions from the scene with Bucky to M.O.D.O.K. lends a captivating visual element to the page. Carnero continues to utilize some of the themes from M.O.D.O.K. to use beautiful non-linear page designs. There’s an incredible panel in the issue where M.O.D.O.K.’s face is used in place of his eye that really captured my imagination. The way Carnero depicts motion on the page in “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty #11 is stunning. There are a few panels where the illusion of movement is perfectly captured during the fight sequences. I love how detailed Carnero’s line is throughout this issue. Nolan Woodard’s colors make Carnero’s art look even more detailed.
One great aspect of “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 is how the series subtly brings in just a few plot threads over from “Captain America: Symbol of Truth” in time for the upcoming ‘Cold War’ story. The cliffhanger offers a subtle tease at how both books could link up together. Towards the opening of the issue Bucky references a moment from a previous Captain America issue as well.
My key criticism regarding this Captain America run still has to be the characterization of Bucky Barnes. The idea of this series regressing Bucky Barnes back to an undercover villain or full villain is a tired idea. At the end of the day, readers are still not very far removed from the ‘Winter Soldier’ story that used so many similar plot beats to the tale. While I do like the animosity that Lanzing and Kelly have introduced towards Steve and Bucky in this title, it is difficult to suspend my disbelief long enough in order to get captivated with this element of the story. Thankfully, there are lots of other ideas and plot threads to explore in “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 that are a lot more interesting.
Carnero works incredibly well with Lanzing and Kelly in this story. “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 breaks traditional page structure often and delivers so many horrific facial expressions and panel zooms to really keep things interesting. I appreciate the large fight sequence stretching across multiple issues for M.O.D.O.K. and M.O.D.O.C.. Carnero and the entire team used so many panel techniques to make the story interesting despite the fact that this is issue is mostly a fight scene. There are a couple of great sequences with Sharon and Steve’s relationship as well in the issue. Also, the moment with Nick Fury humanized this series beautifully as well.
Overall, “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 is a great lead-up to ‘Cold War.’ The issue finishes a decisive battle against M.O.D.O.K. with an enticing visual style while teasing the big ‘Cold War’ story. Marvel’s editorial offices have been working strong to setup key plot points for the upcoming story without making “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 feel bloated. If you are just looking to get on board for the upcoming story, “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 is a great prelude to the crossover that introduces a lot of what you need to know while teasing future plot elements. Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly’s writing on the series has explored deep aspects of Steve Rogers characterization. Carmen Carnero’s art in “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 is the showcase of the issue, featuring a line as nuanced as Steve Roger’s characterization.
Final Verdict: 7.8 – “Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty” #11 concludes a decisive battle and teases an upcoming crossover story with enthusiasm.