#322: Avengers Pt. 5, Captain America

Avengers releases this upcoming week, so we’re wrapping up our pre-Avengers re-watch of recent Marvel flicks with 2011′s Captain America. We discuss Steve Rogers’ unsung true superpower and the movie’s interesting selection of rogues. And we run down the week in geek — plus some fun general geeking-out over The Guild and other awesome web vids.

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As always, guys, a great discussion and lots of fun. I do have to take issue, though, with the idea (at about 01:13:40) that Superman is only good because he’s naive, because he “doesn’t know there are other options.” I suppose this may have been true in Superman: The Movie, but even there we see evidence that Superman chooses a positive, optimistic worldview. Case in point: he tells Lois, “I’m here to fight for truth, justice and the American way.” Lois says (in true 1970s post-Watergate cynical fashion - and, really, just as timely today), “You’ll be fighting every politican in Washington!” And what does Superman say? “You don’t really mean that, Lois.” I take that to mean Superman understands why someone would be cynical about their government and their country - which, of course, are his own by virtue of having been raised by Pa and Ma Kent - but he chooses, actively and consciously, to have faith in the country and its ideals, so that he can call it and its citzens to live up to them.

Certainly, in the comics, Superman has known for a long time that “there are other options.” From the Silver Age on, he’s met rogue Kryptonians who try to use their powers to enforce their will on the world. (And, of course, this plot was brought to the screen with General “Kneel Before” Zod in Superman II). But - as with Captain America - it is not the powers themselves that make Superman “super.” It is how he chooses to use them. (The World of New Krypton comic book a few years back was fundamentally a year-plus long examination and illustration of this dynamic.)

And the way the Kents raised Clark is not incidental - that’s where he gets his moral compass, and he chooses to stick to it.

So all props to Steve Rogers - but he’s no more (or less) a moral paragon than Superman/Clark Kent.

Booster Gold is awesome, and if you don’t believe me, just ask him.

They can either go really humorous with him (in some comic books if Superman and Batman are Star Trek: TNG, Booster and his buddies are Galaxy quest) or pretty serious (like his storyline in the series 52).

Some recommended reading/viewing

52 (link is to the first of 4 TPB volumes) This is actually a good way to learn about some of the 2nd/3rd tier characters in DC. It’s the story of a “missing year” (like the New Caprica arc on BSG) where Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman were all out of action.

Smallville Season 10 Episode 18 - Booster

always a listening pleasure.

Regarding Sean’s point about “motorcycles are poor escape vehicles” … I submit this --> Steve McQueen in “The Great Escape”.

As a side note, the following article (New York Times) of last week’s passing of one the original “Great Escape” personalities was worth a read.

Amazing what an artist with some “free” time can get up to.

I can second this, and the 52 reccomendation. Another great Booster story is the Justice League Unlimted episode ‘Greatest Story never Told’.

And I tottaly feel yey on the lack of space based shows. Its a cartoon, but ive been getting my fix lately from Green Lantern: The Animated Series

Its starts off pretty good, and almost every episode after gets better and better. Its been doing some really cool stuff with the GL mythos, introducing some awesome new characters and is just an adventure filled blast every week.

I honestly think someones brain would melt from insparation if they hung out with Cap and Supes at the same time.

You realize how that ends, right?

When I was a kid, and my dad was watching Great Escape for the million time, when it came to the motorcyle jump, he’d tell me, “Shhh, maybe he’ll make it this time.” And I’d fall for it. In the back of my head, I think I still believe maybe movies will end differently this time. And it makes them even more enjoyable. Unless it’s Boogie Nights. That Night Ranger scene is gonna give me a heart attack one day, even if I’m pretty sure how it’s gonna end.

I liked the discussion of the character of Steve Rogers, and why it had to be him that was made. The part where The Red Skull hits him, and Cap just takes it was the moment you knew it had to be him. The tiny kid isn’t afraid of the big guy because to him, everyone is a big guy, and he deals with it every day.

Had they picked just some ordinary but very good solider, they would have gotten a really strong but still ordinary soldier. With Rogers they got a leader and a hero.

Yup I think I’ve seen the flick dozens of times :slight_smile:

I do agree that a motorcycle is a poor getaway vehicle.

It would be awesome if The Cooler King did make it… just once :slight_smile:

Agree … Stanley Tucchi’s character illustrated the need for selecting the soldier with the inner qualities that Steve Rogers possessed.

As an aside … I guess once he was injected with super soldier serum and zapped with vita-rays … Steve Rogers could also sing in The Guild’s new music video :slight_smile:



I re-watched Captain America last night. Must admit I liked it a lot more than the first time around. I think a big issue with all of these films is the hype…always a problem if they don’t live up. Captain America, looked at now, was a very decent movie and character, and I’m looking forward to him a bit ramped-up in Avengers.

I have so much faith in Joss Whedon, I cannot see how Avengers can be anything but stellar. Looking forward to every minute of it!

Podcast was awesome as always… But I have to say a shout out to Audra for being nice to the student who didn’t know who Socrates was real or not… I had a similar thing but it was me asking the dumb question … When I was in grade school I knew little about the pyramids in Egypt and silly me I saw these pyramid like when in car with the parents on the highway . So I thought they were Egypt pyramids later ummm in HS I saw a map of Africa and was ooooo Egypt is in Africa and those pyramids I saw are what the states uses to hold salt and sand for snow… Dohhh so thankfully we have teachers that help people like me who get facts wrong…
Ps no worries I fixed my problem and became a history major in college and learned a lot about Egypt …

Your commenting on motorcycles and weaponry made me think about the episode of TOP SHOT where they had shooters sit in a motorcycle sidecar and shoot at targets as they were driven by with a M1 carbine. Even shooting at stationary targets from a moving vehicle that is bumping and jostling around is difficult for someone that only has that to worry about, now try and add driving while doing that and the feat becomes untenable. One person driving and one person shooting is the only way to go while on land. In the air it is different, there are no obstacles for you to run into in the air (if you are high enough) except other aircraft so dogfighting is doable; but even then information overload needs to be addressed. Which is why often even some aircraft are designed with a second seat for a Gunner/ECM Operator in mind.

One of the things I find endearing about Cap is his eternal optimism. When he is convinced that his cause is righteous and just he refuses to give up, even when faced by overwhelming odds. He never becomes defeatist, snide or cynical when things are not going his way. That in and of itself is powerful, it is inspiring to those who fight beside him and often is what turns the tide of battle. Not many writers focused on this aspect of his character in the comic books but when it was done right it brought goosebumps to me when I read it, especially when it was recalling one of his old battles from WWII. Watching him take a bunch of tired and burned out soldiers and inspiring them to do greater and better things than they ever thought possible, and then leading the charge himself. A red white and blue vanguard rushing the Nazi lines, a line that had previously held strong. But now with this new force whipped into a zealot like frenzy and lead by a star spangled messiah they break the line and spill through, reeking havoc on their flanks and sending the enemy running.

To me that is Cap’s greatest strength. Not his genetically enhanced body… That only makes what his mind and spirit desires possible. It is his strength of will, indomitable spirit, leadership ability and tactical prowess that make him a real threat.

But that is only my opinion, and I am rambling again. Sorry…

Regarding motorcylces…


Oh. My. Crom. That was…actually…I have no words.

I feel dizzy … I need to go lie down for a bit :slight_smile:


Re: “dumb questions” and misconceptions… I knew someone (born in 1981) who, when it was announced the space shuttle fleet was going to be retired, said, “Well, it served its purpose, it got us to the moon.” It was all I could do, as Audra said with her student, to keep myself from smacking my forehead, and simply set the person straight.

Truly, the only dumb question is the question not asked. (Unless, of course, the question is “Doctor who?” on the fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh…)

Hey, if we’re talking flying motorcycles… this being originally a BSG podcast and all…


That is the sole memory I have of watching Galactica 1980 as a kid, in 1980! I thought the flying motorcycles were awesome!

Knowledge =/= Intelligence. Anybody can learn facts (well, not ANYBODY but you know what I mean), it takes smarts to apply those facts in a way that accomplishes some task. This is what I hated about that “Fifth Grader” show. Yeah. You know who the 14th President of the US was. Calculate a mortgage. Balance a family budget. Then we’ll talk about who’s smarter.

Speaking of knowledge not equaling intelligence, someone mentioned on the show that you don’t pronounce “Catan” the exact way I pronounce “Catan,” but nobody said what the correct pronunciation was. Care to enlighten? :slight_smile:

On a much more minor note: The small rodent with a lisp in Winne the Pooh was Gopher. There was no beaver in Pooh (it would be a completely different sort of movie if there was).

In regards to Settlers …


“You can’t go wrong with dick and fart jokes” :slight_smile: