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John Byrne
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Posted: 09 September 2021 at 12:50pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I must amend my AVENGERS 4 comment. I had genuinely forgotten the “real” Captain America (created by Joe Simon with Jack Kirby) did continue publishing after the War. He went on to battle the Dirty Commies and saw his platform become a horror comic.

So, yes, the Cap to whom we were all introduced in AVENGERS 4 was, indeed, a massive retcon.

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Jason Czeskleba
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Posted: 09 September 2021 at 12:50pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

 JB wrote:
Bucky's death was always in 1944. No retcon involved. Check AVENGERS 4.

Perhaps I misused the term "retcon"?  But what I meant is that the notion that Bucky died in WWII was invented in 1963.  He was not shown to have died in any comic in 1944, and indeed remained alive throughout many comic appearances in the late 40s and 50s.  In 1962 he was still "alive" though not appearing in any ongoing comic.  So the idea that he died in 1944 was a change to the existing continuity.   

 Michael Penn wrote:
But since that was the first time we learned that he died, how could it be a retcon? Doesn't a retcon actively change what we knew so that now what we knew becomes what we thought we knew?

Yeah.  But "what we knew" was that Bucky and Cap continued to have adventures after WWII ended, throughout the 40s and 50s.  Avengers #3 changed that.  That's why I thought retcon was the appropriate term.

edit:  I posted this at the same time JB was posting his comment above asserting that Avengers #4 was indeed a retcon.  So move on, nothing more to see here...


Edited by Jason Czeskleba on 09 September 2021 at 12:55pm
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Phil Frances
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Posted: 09 September 2021 at 5:58pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Just a note from Dr Internet to point out that 'canon' is the correct term for a selection of tales accepted as genuine ... whereas 'cannon' is a huge wob-off archaic gun. Hence, stories cannot be 'cannon' or otherwise - apologies to all archaic gun and/or siege engine lovers out there,

Now, if anyone can also stop the prevalence of 'sneak peak' ( ie - a sly look at a mountain top or similar, presumably ) instead of 'sneak peek' ( being a crafty view of something others aren't necessarily party to ) , Dr Internet would be ecstatically happy and could probably retire ...
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Michael Penn
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Posted: 09 September 2021 at 8:02pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

If you could, Jason, just clarify for me that if Bucky had not had post-WW2 adventures and was then revealed in AVENGERS #4 to have died just as that comic showed, that would not be a retcon...? It's only because Bucky had already been shown to have lived beyond the war and then that was effectively erased in 1963 that this is a retcon?
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Jason Czeskleba
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Posted: 09 September 2021 at 9:56pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Yeah, I'd say that is correct, Michael.  If Captain America Comics had been cancelled before the end of the war and Cap and Bucky had made no appearances between then and Avengers #4, then we'd have no way of knowing whether Bucky had survived to the end of the war, so the Avengers story wouldn't be a retcon.  An example of that would be the death of Miss America, revealed in GS Avengers #1.  That wasn't a retcon because no mention had been made of her after her last appearance in the early 50s.  So saying she'd died in the late 50s did not contradict any previously-published stories. 


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Eric Jansen
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Posted: 10 September 2021 at 1:15am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Didn't Roy Thomas explain that all of the Golden Age Timely Comics didn't really happen?  (The people and the major events did occur in the Marvel Universe but not exactly as presented in the comics.)  So, nothing that contradicted them can really be called a "retcon" (except, perhaps, Thomas's assertion itself).  If a later writer (Thomas in that issue of WHAT IF and any issue of THE INVADERS or Steve Englehart explaining away the 50's Cap and Bucky, etc.) brought it in to modern continuity, then (and only then) was a Golden Age event considered canon.

Edited by Eric Jansen on 10 September 2021 at 1:16am
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Jason Czeskleba
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Posted: 10 September 2021 at 2:15am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Yeah, I'd say that Roy Thomas' assertion that Golden Age stories weren't inherently canon was itself a retcon. 
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Michael Penn
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Posted: 10 September 2021 at 2:35am | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Thanks, Jason.
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Greg McPhee
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Posted: 10 September 2021 at 3:50am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

I think I'm getting a headache now.
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Jim Burdo
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Posted: 10 September 2021 at 4:49am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

The official retcon is that to avoid loss of morale, The Spirit of '76 William Nasland) and Fred Davis Jr. assumed the roles of Captain America and Bucky. Later Nasland was killed and replaced by the Patriot (Jeff Mace), and later Davis was injured and replaced by Golden Girl. 

Edited by Jim Burdo on 10 September 2021 at 4:56am
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Dave Phelps
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Posted: 14 September 2021 at 6:32am | IP Logged | 11 post reply

 Vinny Valenti wrote:
Another tangent - how did a WHAT IF? story end up being considered canon? Doesn't that go against the purpose of that series?

Basically, Roy Thomas decreed it in an editorial that ran in the issue (or at least that it could be), while acknowledging the latter.    
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Brian Floyd
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Posted: 14 September 2021 at 8:32pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Regarding the replacement Caps, it should be noted that while the Patriot actually was a character from the Golden Age, Spirit of `76 was one of Roy Thomas' own creations, from a story in THE INVADERS in the late 70's. Not a real Golden Age hero.

And I'm guessing The Fighting Yank was in the public domain when Spirit of `76 was created, because the two look way too much alike.  

I don't see why Cap and Bucky couldn't have ended up on that rocket near the end of the war, making the WWII replacements unneccesary. It would me much less of a headache. 

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