Captain America #272
Issue(s): Captain America #272
We saw Jim Wilson get shot in the street two issues ago, and it's only in this issue that we have the tense scene at the hospital where Jim's uncle Sam Wilson (the Falcon), Leila Taylor, and Sarah and Jody Casper are waiting to hear the results of the surgery. Steve Rogers rushes in after witnessing another violent crime on the way to the hospital, and it's said that Sam woke up Steve in the middle of the night after Jim was shot "tonight" during his activities as a Young Watcher (a Guardian Angels analogue).
A little later, thinking back on his experience with Arnie Roth, Cap says it was "just a few hours ago". So that doesn't leave any room for Cap's investigation into the seedy world of professional wrestling in issue #271.
As part of the urban jungle theme of this issue, Cap is also stalked and eventually attacked by a rat-controlling were-rat called Vermin. He initially appears as a hooded figure...
...and directs his rats from afar.
But he soon reveals his true nature.
Vermin was sent by the same mystery person that attacked Cap through Arnie Roth
Meanwhile, the Falcon has been approached by members of the local schoolboard to see if he'd run for Congress. Initially he hasn't yet told anyone, even Leila. But by the end of issue, after experiencing even more crime in his neighborhood, he tells everyone that he's decided to run.
This should have begun a very cool new status quo for Sam Wilson, but unfortunately it goes off in a weird direction.
The Falcon and Cap have parallel sequences where the events of the night are too much for them and they both nearly snap and have to reign themselves in.
In the Falcon's case, this "Little Angel" guy is the one who shot Jim Wilson. In Cap's case i think it's mainly just a culmination of various stressful events over this issue and #270. That, and the fact that Vermin, as a pathetic rat-creature, inspires revulsion in him.
Quality Rating: B-
Chronological Placement Considerations: I've placed this directly after #270. See above for problems relating to the insertion of last issue's fill-in; i've placed issue #271 after this issue.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (4): show
It's surprising how many appearances Vermin would make over the years - albeit mostly in appearances written by JM DeMatteis.
Posted by: Chris | August 3, 2013 7:45 AM
Transplanting characters he created from one book to another, even after everyone else forgot about them, is something of a JM DeMatteis trademark. Much like Marv Wolfman introducing a love interest with disturbing behavior early on, or Chris Claremont writing about the N'Garai.
Posted by: Luis Dantas | February 15, 2015 9:19 PM
I love the the attention to continuity with the whole Wilson family showing up at the hospital to check on Jim. Otherwise I would think that Jim and Jody were contractually forbidden from appearing in the same story together, like Heathcliff and Riff Raff.
Posted by: JP | May 23, 2016 11:01 AM
Great origin! Vermin used to creep me out. I think Peter Parker comic did a different twist on his origin years later.
Posted by: Cinque | June 28, 2018 11:01 AM
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