Comic Books Have Gone Crazy

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The cover of The Fantastic Four issue 3 from 1961

“I’ve kept a limited number of comic books from my youth, ranging from the 1960s to the 1980s, and occasionally take a few out and read them. I’m not really into comic books anymore, especially the current titles, and for a lot of reasons.

Originally, I started collecting them in the late 1960s when I was in Junior High, and I’d been reading them since I was old enough to read because they were so much fun. In the ’60s and ’70s, I was mainly into Marvel comics (Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, the X-Men and so on), but I rediscovered DC in the late 80s when they did the first reboot of their titles.

More recently, I used my local public library system and checked out Vertigo DC graphic novels such as V for Vendetta and The Watchmen as well as the Sandman (the Wesley Dodd costumed hero, not the other guy) because they were more edgy and I was an adult. In the case of the first two titles, I wanted to understand the basis for the films they became, and in the Sandman’s case, I just enjoy the character and the 1930s vibe.

I’ve kept in touch with how comic books have been morphing in more recent years, and generally give them a wide berth. The superheroes I once admired and who taught me about courage, innovation, and adventure, had become unrecognizable as well as unoriginal. Numerous reboots later, all of the old villains and storylines had been rehashed ad nauseam, just like what we see in both the film and television industries, and I don’t intend to pay for the privilege of being bored.

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Counter Invasion

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© Google, March 2016 – The Needles Headland and Tennyson Down – Isle of Wight

“Do you think you and your commandos can pull it off, Nick?”

The Army Sergeant chewed on his cigar filling the air with what he thought of as a “sweet-smelling aroma,” and his C.O. and good friend Captain Sam Sawyer didn’t mind the breach of protocol in his office at Allied Command.

“Why the hell not. It’s what we joined this man’s Army for, ain’t it?

germans in guernsey

Germans in Guernsey – Found at the “On the Wight” blog

“Great. You and your men will board the sub for the Isle of Wight at 23:30 hours.”

“You’re sure he’ll be there, Sam.”

“Our best intel says he’s personally inspecting the Nazi installation at Carisbrooke Castle. Your mission is to invade the castle and assassinate Adolf Hitler.”

“Just one more thing, Sam. We’ll need the Captain.”

“Me? I’m not…”

“No, not you. I mean the Captain.”

“He’ll be there with your commandos, Nick. Don’t think he’d miss this one for the world.”

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Sgt. Nick Fury and His Howling Commandos with Captain America

I wrote this story for the What Pegman Saw writing challenge. The idea is to use a Google maps image and location as the inspiration for crafting a piece of flash fiction no more than 150 words long. My word count is 148.

Today the Pegman takes us to the Isle of Wight and specifically to Carisbrooke Castle.

Yesterday, I wrote an alternate history story about the origin of Captain America after reading something suggesting that actor Will Smith was initially considered to play the title role in the 2011 film Captain America: The First Avenger.

Last night, with that still on my mind, I re-watched the 2014 movie Captain America: The Winter Soldier. The previous film depicted a version of Fury’s “Howling Commandos” but without Nick of course, and the sequel mentioned them in a display at the Smithsonian.

This morning when I saw the Pegman’s location, I did what I always do, open up a couple of Wikipedia pages. I was curious about the involvement of the Isle of Wight during World War Two and I found something interesting.

There initially had been plans for the Germans to invade and occupy the Isle of Wight and use it as a staging ground for the air blitz of London and southern England. However fears of Britain’s sea superiority resulted in Hitler rejecting the plot.

Then I read the article called How the Isle of Wight could have helped Hitler win the war: Nazi leader was talked out of his plans to invade the tiny island and, having recently written a few “alternate history” tales, decided to craft my wee story around the premise of the Nazis successfully invading and holding the Isle of Wight.

Throwing caution to the winds, I included Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos or at least Nick and his C.O. Captain “Happy Sam” Sawyer with an “honorable mention” of Cap himself. How would the war in Europe been different if Fury’s team were successful and they killed Adolf Hitler sometime in 1941?

To read other stories based on the prompt, go to InLinkz.com.