Update: Now that Marvel has revealed all five of the diverse "local" Captain Americas that will debut during the five-issue United States of Captain America (opens in new tab) limited series, the publisher has released a new variant cover by Leinil Francis Yu for the series' fifth issue on sale in October uniting all five of the new characters.
To recap, the five local Caps include:
- Aaron Fischer, an LGBTQ+ teen, who Marvel calls "defender of the destitute" who protects unhoused, runaway teens on America's Railways (to debut in United States of Captain America #1 (opens in new tab))
- Nichelle Wright of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania ("vanguard of a brighter future"), who works "day and night to bring change into a world where she feels defeated." (United States of Captain America #2 (opens in new tab))
- Joe Gomez, the Captain America of the Kickapoo Tribe ("champion of the overlooked"), is a construction worker by day (United States of Captain America #3 (opens in new tab))
- Ari Agbayani ("a bully's worst nightmare"), a Filipino-American college student who is inspired by Bucky Barnes (United States of Captain America #4 (opens in new tab))
- Jeremy Merrick ("protector of soldiers"), an active-duty military Captain.
Check out the full new variant cover along with full character design images in our gallery see below for more information and about the series and the newest Cap Jeremy Merrick.
Original story follows...
As promised, the current United States of Captain America limited series, which celebrates the star-spangled hero's 80th anniversary, will introduce five new characters inspired directly by the concept of Captain America - and now Marvel has unveiled the fifth and final member of the so-called 'Captains Network.'
The fifth new Captain America, created by series writer Christopher Cantwell and core artist Dale Eaglesham, this time without other co-creators, is Jeremy Merrick, a literal Captain in the United States Air Force who has devoted himself to aiding veterans and active service members.
What's more, Merrick is inspired by a real service member Cantwell met nearly 20 years ago, down to the name 'Jeremy.' Cantwell met the service member, a Staff Sergeant in the US Army, while working as a production assistant on a documentary about the National Guard.
"Meeting these different people, all of whom were serving their communities through wildfires, floods, and natural disasters—while then deploying overseas to Iraq and Afghanistan for additional tours—showed me how myopic my worldview was at the time," Cantwell tells Marvel.com (opens in new tab) of his experience working alongside National Guard troops.
"There was one Staff Sergeant in particular named Jeremy that I became fast friends with. I really looked up to him," Cantwell continues. "He challenged the idea of what a soldier was in my head and made me completely rethink it. Jeremy Merrick is definitely an echo of him."
In The United States of Captain America, the four modern Captains America - Steve Rogers, John Walker, Bucky Barnes, and Sam Wilson - team up on a road trip adventure across America, in which they meet other heroes from all walks of life, all of whom have been inspired by the collective legacy of Captain America.(opens in new tab)
Merrick is somewhat unique among the other new members of the 'Captains Network' of local heroes in that he's an active duty service member and a hero who is specifically focused on protecting those who have served in the United States military from exploitation and abandonment by systems that too often let veterans fall through the cracks.
"Jeremy Merrick is an Air Force intelligence officer serving at NORAD, but previous to that he has done tours in both Iraq and Afghanistan," Cantwell explains. "He's stationed in Colorado and is a single dad raising a young daughter. He's very much about protecting those who serve with and under him, like my friend Jeremy was. He wants to make sure his fellow soldiers and service members are protected and taken care of, and aren't chewed up by the system they've devoted their lives to."
The United States of Captain America #5 is due out in October. Stay tuned to Newsarama for Marvel's full October 2021 solicitations, coming later this month.
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