Release Date: July 22, 2011
The story: Scrawny but plucky Brooklyn kid Steve Rogers is chosen for an experimental government program run by Dr. Abraham Erskine, meant to turn army recruits into super-soldiers. The program is a success, but Erskine is killed, rendering Steve the only existing case. He’s put to work as “Captain America” at fundraising shows across the country, but soon becomes disillusioned, and uses a USO tour abroad to get into the action, freeing an entire unit that was captured, including his best friend, Bucky Barnes. He learns that Nazi officer Johann Schmidt (who underwent a botched early version of the super-soldier program, giving him the disfigurement that earned him the name “The Red Skull”) has taken possession of a powerful energy source called The Tesseract. Captain America stops Schmidt and his evil group Hydra from destroying major cities, but in doing so, he’s forced to crash a plane in the Arctic, and the Tesseract drops into the ocean. When he comes to, Steve learns he’s been frozen for decades, and it’s now the 21st century.
Noteworthy events: Steve’s best friend Bucky falls into a chasm during a mission, presumably dying. Steve’s romantic attraction with Peggy Carter never gets a chance to bloom, as he crashes the plane before they are able to meet up. Arnim Zola is captured and recruited by Phillips to work for America.