SPOILER ALERT: If you want to read Captain America #25 unspoiled, then read no further. Otherwise, scroll down.
Jeff Hebert, one of the three or four readers of this blog (Hi, Jeff! Hi, Andy! Hi, Michael! Hi, Mom!) and all-around good guy posted a comment to the Captain America story I posted earlier, and my reply to that got long enough that I figured I'd put it here instead.
Here's what Jeff had to say:
Jeff, to be fair, I haven't read enough of the comics to be sure where this is heading. I bought the first two or three issues of Civil War, but refused to buy the issue where they killed off Bill Foster, AKA Black Goliath, letting my money do the talking for me.
One word: Ugh.
And to have THE PUNISHER take his place? That's downright blasphemous. The Punisher is in every way the anti-Cap, standing not for the American way but rather the Punisher way. He'll always be the epitome of the villain-as-superhero archetype that turned me off of comics for twenty years.
There's room for anti-heroes in the genre, of course, but Captain America and Superman shouldn't be in their ranks. They're the opposite of anti-heroes; they're supposed to be the pure, unadulterated, wholly good (while still kicking ass) epitome of what a real hero is.
I'm very glad now I've avoided "Civil War". I've yet to read one of these epic, world-redefining, multi-series slugfests since I was too young to know better with "Crisis in Infinite Earths", and I clearly haven't missed much.
This really blows. I love Cap. Feh on Marvel.
In the Civil War comics I saw, the Punisher had some serious hero worship going on for Cap, and when Cap took off his mask at the end of Civil War #7 in order to surrender as Steve Rogers, the Punisher picked it up and stared thoughtfully at it. Anything beyond that is conjecture.
And I looked at Captain America #25 briefly during my lunch hour. There's some potential ambivalence there as to whether he's dead. On the other hand, if Marvel has orchestrated this much media attention on the issue only to have it be a feint of some type (they're saying Captain America is dead, but he's really in protective custody or whatever), then shame on Marvel. If Marvel makes the news reporters look like chumps, the reporters will be that much less likely to cover comic book–related stories.