When I wrote my last post over three years ago, I thought that I was done being the Hopeless Romantic. I served an 18 month mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saint and I came back ready to grow up and be more serious. I started a new blog, Smile Always Chuck, but over the last year and a half I've missed being the Hopeless Romantic. I miss being silly and slightly ridiculous. I've decided it's time to come back.
My last post was on Iron Man/Tony Stark and my thoughts on him. But I've seen the light. I've found someone so much better than Iron Man: Captain America.
This will be the first part of a three part study of Captain America from the Marvel movies. I'll be talking about Captain America/Steve Rogers as he appears in Captain America : The First Avenger, The Avengers, and Captain America : The Winter Soldier.
Let's start with Captain America : The First Avenger.
Before we have Captain America, we started with a young man from Brooklyn named Steve Rogers. Steve has a deep sense of patriotic duty. He doesn't want to sit by and watch other men go sacrifice everything for their country in WWII, while he is forced to "collect scrap metal in his little red wagon." Unfortunately, Steve Rogers is small in stature and riddled with health problems so he can't seem to get himself recruited in the army, despite his many efforts.
I think, because of his small stature, Steve feels like he needs compensate for what he feels he lacks. He's not afraid to take on bigger counterparts, especially if he feels they aren't showing the proper respected owed to the armed forces. I'm referring to the movie theater incident that ends with Steve on his butt after being punched by a much bigger man and Bucky saves the day. He doesn't "like bullies" as he tells Dr. Erskine. Which seems to suggest that Steve Rogers has seen his fair share of bullies in his life. He doesn't take on the "bullies" to prove that he's as big and strong as other mean, but that he can and is willing to do it.
When he finally gets his very improved body, Steve doesn't gloat about it. He uses his improved physical abilities to help others, uses it for good. He doesn't use it get girls or to finally prove to all those bullies that he's better than them. He tries to protect those around him. Even when he was a little guy, Steve is always willing to sacrifice himself for the greater good/mankind. Examples such as never giving up trying to get recruited in the army and throwing himself over the grenade in bootcamp. Going after the 107th alone. And taking the plane down into the ice so that no one would be hurt by the bombs on board. This is what makes him Captain America.
Steve has spent his life as the little guy that no one really notices. His best pal, Bucky, is the only one left at this point of the story who cares about him. Bucky has always been the one to look out for Steve but he's just been given his orders to join the 107th. As a last hurrah, they go on a double date to the exciting Future Expo (or whatever it is called) in New York City. Steve's date isn't even interested in him. He evens offers to share his popcorn (or peanuts?) with her and the horrible girl only rolls her eyes. What a terrible date! But I think that's the normal reaction of women towards the small Steve Rogers. Especially in the midst of all the handsome and honorable young men in uniform heading off to fight for their country. Women love men in uniform.
With that said, its safe to assume that Steve has no experience with women. He says as much to Peggy in the car the morning of his procedure. Women just never expressed an interest in him and I think once the war broke out, he was more interested in serving his country than landing a girlfriend. Agent Peggy Carter sees that. He's not a womanizer nor is he interested in becoming one. Even when he has the physical appearance to get any girl he wants. I think it surprises him to find women actually paying attention to him for the first time in his life. When the secretary in the SSR office kisses him, not only is he surprised but semi-willing because he's never had that kind of attention before. I'd bet that Steve's never been kissed before. No wonder he was getting into it when Peggy caught him.
So after all of this, what turned Steve Rogers into Captain America? Was it his physical transformation from sickly boy to tall and muscly awesomeness? Was it the fact that he finally had the ability to do what he'd always wanted to do and serve his country?
It boils down to what Dr. Erskine told Steve before his procedure. Heart. Steve Rogers had the heart necessary to be Captain America. To be the symbol that roused the American people's hearts and spirits in regards to the war and to lead the the men of the armed forces into battle against the greatest odds. He inspires goodness and truth and protecting the things that are important to you. A message we can still use today.
Captain America is a symbol of freedom and goodness. And thus, he is the first Avenger.
Until Next Time,
The Hopeless Romantic