After escaping from Federal Custody with the help Of The Daughters Of Liberty last issue, Steve is now a wanted fugitive. Is Steve going to just lay low and watch Judge Judy until it all blows over? Meanwhile, what are the Daughters up to? And how does the Kingpin figure into all this? Let’s take a look.
A group of Hydra fodder is taken down one night- not by Neighborhood watch, not by the police, but by an American Flag clad vigilante. It could only be Cap, despite his being on the run for a crime he didn’t commit. They are swiftly taken down as narration boxes query if it’s the REAL Cap… or the Supreme Commander tying up loose ends? Enter Nick Fury, who is leading a team to bring him in. Wilson Fisk, the honorable mayor of New York City has graciously provided CCTV footage of the Hydra attack. It’s missing a crucial part: Steve’s escape route. Some hand wringing about whether Fisk is legit before Fury calls up Bucky to help.
Meanwhile, Cap returns to Sharon, who reminds Steve he’s in lot of trouble. Not only that, rather inexplicably the world would be better off without Captain America. Remember that whole Hydra Secret Empire thing? If you haven’t been following along, the world still doesn’t believe in him. Got it!
Steve meets up with the Daughters Of Liberty, and it’s rather heavily implied he might have a problem working with *Gasp*! A crew of all women. Also, we are told that only a crew of females could understand the principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The dream is old, Sharon says. Older than Cap. Probably older than geriatric Sharon even. What’s an emasculated, mansplained Captain America to do? Give up, that’s what! He hangs up his Cap suit and for some inexplicable reason puts on his old Shield Agent suit.
All the while Bucky and Dryad have VonStrucker and some of the Myrmidon guards hooked up to a fancy merry go round with a light bulb, downloading memories to find out who the “Power Elite” are.
Just when it seemed Coates had turned a corner and was moving past Secret Empire and telling his own story, we are thrown right back in and reminded for the umpteenth time that Cap was the Supreme Commander Of Hydra, and he can’t be trusted. This issue is basically people standing around talking with little progression of the plotlines, excepting the end reveal of extremely common Cap trope of Steve “giving up” on being Cap, this time in name only as he still proudly carries his Shield. Add to that the extremely awkward and uncomfortable exchange with Cap and the Daughters, this is a Steve written so far out of character he may as well be a skrull. It’s laughable, even insulting given how many female characters Cap has worked with in the past: Black Widow, Captain Marvel, She-Hulk, Sue Storm, Kitty Pryde, Jessica Jones, Sharon herself even that he would have some sort of issue with a group of female pseudo-Avengers, especially since they broke him out of prison last issue. A real letdown after several good issues.