(Warning: The following contains major SPOILERS for the recently released Captain America: Steve Rogers #2, as well as discussion of THAT big Captain America twist from last month's Captain America: Steve Rogers #1. Proceed with whatever level of caution your nearest Cosmic Cube suggests to you is wise...)
Now, when word broke last month that Captain America - one of the most iconic heroes of the past century - had secretly been a dastardly Hydra agent the whole time, it's probably fair to say that the response was...mixed. While many argued that we shouldn't worry overmuch about it - and that the big twist would soon be reversed - others still questioned whether it should ever have made it onto the page in the first place. Irrespective, the events of Captain America: Steve Rogers #1 proceeded to resonate around the world - and to stir up controversy wherever they went.
Now, though, we've finally had the chance to read the next issue - Captain America: Steve Rogers #2 - and as it turns out:
Captain America Wasn't In Hydra All Along, After All
Y'see, as Captain America: Steve Rogers #2 reveals, the whole think was actually - surprise surprise - a nefarious scheme of the Red Skull's. Because of course it was.
As it turns out, The Red Skull's endless attempts to take control of the Cosmic Cube have, in recent months of Marvel continuity, been a little more effective than usual. Y'see, several shards of the cube were reformed into the shape (and mindset) of an incredibly powerful little girl named Kobik - the very same one that recently restored Captain America's youth.
According to Captain America: Steve Rogers #2, though, Kobik has actually been under the influence of the Red Skull this whole time - with the Skull having carefully manipulated her into believing that #Hydra is a noble, peace-seeking and egalitarian organization (as opposed to the fascistic, violent and racist one it actually is). That, in turn, led to Kobik changing not Steve Rogers' age - but his memories too.
Steve, then, is absolutely convinced that he is in fact a Hydra agent, and that he's been one since childhood - but is fundamentally mistaken. Instead, every Cap adventure up until the recent events in Pleasant Hill (during which Cap's youth was restored) featured the original, America-loving, Hydra-hating Cap, with only his current adventures being corrupted by Hydra. Which, in turn, means that we can now enjoy (or hate-read, depending on your feelings about the story-line) several issues of Captain Hydra-themed fun, safe in the knowledge that at some point - whether its in a few months time, or even a few years - we'll see Cap's original memories returned to him.
And, presumably, the Red Skull being defeated... again.