I omitted a large portion of the title of this comic from the title of this article. Be warned that there’s just no way to discuss this title without spoiling Captain America #25. Heck, there’s no way to browse comic shelves the week this comes out without spoiling that issue. So, the body of this article will also spoil Captain America #25, as there’s just no sensible way to discuss this series without mentioning it. You’ve been warned.

General Information

Title: Civil War: Fallen Son – The Death of Captain America – Wolverine

Author: Jeph Loeb

Illustrator(s): Leinil Yu (pencils and inks) and Dave McCaig (Color/Digital Ink)

Original Publication Date: Cover dated June 2007

Cover Price: $2.99US, $3.75Can

Past comic reviews can be found here.

Premise

This is the first chapter in a five part series modeled on the stages of grief. In this chapter, Wolverine represents denial, as he works to determine if Captain America is really dead.

High Point

“No wonder Doctor Strange is exhausted…”

Low Point

It was too easy. Yes, we’ve seen that this trick works, but we’ve also seen you can’t fool Iron Man with the same trick twice.

The Scores

The concept of the entire series is original. There are too many instances in comics where death leads to the final stage of grief immediately, or without any grief at all. This entire series is about avoiding those trappings. Sadly, this individual issue doesn’t do a lot that we haven’t already read in New Avengers. I give it 4 out of 6.

The artwork by Lienil Yu confuses me somewhat. The posing, storytelling, and so forth are good, but the huge number of lines on every exposed piece of skin makes it look like every character in the story has been scarred by sandpaper. The colours are mostly good, though the “time elapsed” Daredevil shot lacks the faded colour convention used by such work, momentarily making me wonder how many people were running around in the outfit this week. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story, though lacking originality, is well executed. We know what Wolverine plans to do and why, and get to see him execute that plan in a fairly reasonable way. I give it 4 out of 6.

The characterization is all here. That’s the core of the entire series: exploring how different characters respond to Cap’s death. This is done very well for all characters involved. I give it 6 out of 6.

The emotional response is bland this issue, due to its similarities to recent New Avengers material. I strongly suspect that will improve as the miniseries goes on, though. I give it 3 out of 6.

The flow is, oddly, hampered by all those extra lines I mentioned above. The characters just look stiff and rough, which slows down the feel of what action there is. I find that some comic book reads are self-pacing, pulling the reader quickly through some moments and slowly through others, indicating a strong sense of flow in the storytelling. This one does not do that in any way. There aren’t any panels that disrupt the flow, but the flow is never established, either. I give it 2 out of 6.

Overall, it’s not a bad start to the series, but it’s not spectacular. Most of the difficulties I have with this issue probably won’t apply to later issues. (Each chapter has its own plotline, with its own central character, and its own artist, which is why I’m reviewing the individual issues instead of the series.) I give it 4 out of 6.

In total, Civil War: Fallen Son – The Death of Captain America – Wolverine receives 27 out of 42.

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