Who is Captain Krakoa? That's a familiar question since the character's debut as an alternate costume for Cyclops, whose true identity wasn't initially revealed. And now that a new Captain Krakoa has debuted in Uncanny Avengers, we're asking again.
Interestingly enough, September 20's Uncanny Avengers #2 by writer Gerry Duggan, artist Javier Garron, colorist Morry Hollowell, and letterer Travis Lanham lays out a few subtle clues about who the new Captain Krakoa might be under the helmet, if you know where to look.
Spoilers ahead for Uncanny Avengers #2
In the opening scene of Uncanny Avengers #2, the team takes on Captain Krakoa and his new Mutant Liberation Front take on the new Avengers Unity Squad, comprised of Avengers and mutants (and Deadpool) who are dedicated to resisting Orchis and their anti-mutant sentiments.
In the fight, Captain Krakoa severely breaks Captain America's arm, later necessitating that it actually be sheathed in one of Bucky's unused cybernetic arms to keep it safe till it heals.
Meanwhile, Captain Krakoa continues duping mutants such as Blob and Wildside into helping him pull off false-flag attacks in the name of mutant liberation (hence the team's name) which are actually orchestrated behind the scenes by Orchis to drum up more anti-mutant hate.
Back at Orchis headquarters, two of the group's leaders, Doctor Stasis and MODOK, lament that Captain Krakoa is going beyond their dictates, fearing he'll go too far and Orchis will be exposed.
"I think we both knew when we brought that soldier out of 'retirement' that he might have a difficult time following orders," MODOK states, hinting that "retirement" is code for something else - potentially resurrection from death.
Meanwhile, at the MLF's base, Captain Krakoa hooks up with Andrea Strucker - his face still hidden from view, those his helmet is off - warning her not to utter his real name to anyone under threat of violence.
Coming back around to the Avengers Unity Squad, the mutant portion of the team confronts Captain America, stating they don't want him to be the team's leader. Instead, they want Rogue in that position, as they think it would be better for a mutant to be seen opposing Captain Krakoa, and fear the fallout of what could happen if Captain Krakoa were to kill Steve Rogers.
So… What does all this say about who might be under the helmet of Captain Krakoa? First, we'll go ahead and let you in on our theory, then we'll break down the clues.
This is of course just a guess, so don't take this as a prediction or a guarantee of any kind - just a theory. That said, it's looking a lot like the new Captain Krakoa could be the evil version of Steve Rogers who was the villain of Secret Empire.
Here's why that could be the case.
First off, it seems that whoever it is was resurrected from death, given MODOK's terminology in Uncanny Avengers #2. Evil Steve (Stevil if you're nasty) was last seen being melted into goo after escaping captivity in a previous volume of Captain America. He's dead, but in comics that doesn't mean a lot - especially when you've got Doctor Stasis, an even more evil version of cloning expert Mister Sinister, on your side.
Second, there's the matter of the cybernetic arm. Randomly giving Steve Rogers a bionic arm seems kinda weird, particularly when it's established in the story that it's a temporary thing. Random that is, until you consider that if there are two versions of Steve Rogers on the page at some point, a cyber arm gives both readers and Steve's teammates something to tell them both apart.
Then there's the matter of the themes involved with Steve Rogers' place on the team and his identity as Captain America, both of which have been established as key factors in the story and what happens next. We're not saying that Uncanny Avengers is DEFINITELY foreshadowing Steve Rogers' face being attached to something really bad, but that feels like a valid interpretation of the subtext.
Is Steve Rogers really Captain Krakoa? It's hard to say - there aren't enough definitive answers yet. And there are holes in the theory, like Steve Rogers not recognizing himself as Captain Krakoa while they were face-to-face in combat. But it's a compelling idea, and one that could come to pass.
We're also not discounting the chance it could be Magneto, whose resurrection was announced for January. Maybe he's already back, but not back to himself just yet.
Uncanny Avengers #3 goes on sale October 25.
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