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3.8 out of 5 stars13
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 22 January 2009
Ok, I haven't actually got this graphic novel, but I do have the comics books that are in it (issues 1 to 4).

I knew nothing about any of the characters before I read this (other than a quick skim through wikipedia, and the appearance of Spitfire in the Captain America Omnibus) but really enjoyed them anyway. It doesn't really get confusing, though you do have to accept that all the characters have a past and just pick it up as you go along. Paul Cornell gives you all the relevant information (eg Black Knight was in the Avengers and his sword is evil - all I know or need to know) so it is perfectly accessable to new readers like myself.

The storyline itself is great. Really exciting and with plenty of twists. The team isn't active at the beginning of the storyline, and their formation flows really well out of the story. They have to do something to stop the Skrulls that justifies the team being in existence even after the skrulls have gone. There is a very magical/fantasy backdrop as oppossed to the more common sci-fi backdrop that is in most super-hero books. I wasn't sure if I would like that, but I have enjoyed it so don't let that put you off.

The artwork is really good. I can't complain about anything in it really. Obviously Kirk isn't one of marvel's superstar artists but I can't think of anyone I would rather have on the book The tone would fit someone like Bryan Hitch or John Cassaday, and either of them would be good choices but I think like Kirk. It looks great. Sometimes the backgrounds can be very full in fight/action scenes and that makes it a little difficult to tell exactly what is going on at a glance, but you can linger on those panels. And anyway, a fight scene should be a little confusing with lots going on.

The only minor criticism I have is that the story is so fast paced that it can be a little hard to keep track of everything first time through. This is the first arc of an ongoing series so it needs to be exciting to pull people in.

There are loads of great reviews for the individual issues on the net so have a read through them for other people's opinions. If you are unsure about getting it I would highly recommend just trying it. The panini edition is very cheap compared to ones produced by marvel and it is well worth at least trying out. Besides, it is nice to have a series focusing on Britain.

Edit: I deleted this from a five star review and reposted it as a four star. I have decided to be more discerning in my ratings and only rate as five star things I think are essential purchases.
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on 7 May 2009
I came to this book knowing little about Captain Britain and more on the strength of Paul Cornell's previous work, his Doctor Who books, audios and television work and his original novels. I'd read his miniseries Wisdom already and had enjoyed the characterisation in that - especially loving John the Skrull.

Well, Captain Britain and MI:13 certainly tops it in sheer terms of scale and enjoyment. Fast, furious and funny with a very British identity, something a lot of Marvel writers don't get when writing characters in the UK.

I can't wait for the next trade, Hell Comes To Birmingham, and can't recommend this book highly enough.
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I will start by confessing to only being an intermittent reader of Graphic Novels, and to knowing nothing of Captain Britain's previous incarnations. I picked this up on the back of magazine article, which piqued my interest.

After a weak opening chapter, I have to say it's not bad. I did find the narrative difficult to follow at first, probably due to having no prior knowledge of the characters involved. There seemed to be little attempt to engage a newcomer, which I found disappointing. If a story is told well, it should be easy to follow, even for those who are new to the franchise.

That said, the plot tightens up quickly, and there is some wonderfully British humour woven into the text. Large parts of the story revolve around British myths and the realm of magic. This gave 'Captain Britain' a flavour of Alan Moore's 'Promethea' series. The two graphic novels explore similar themes, but Moore's series is handled with considerably more finesse. That said, 'CB' is much lighter in tone, and exposition to the same depth as the 'Promethea' novels would have been out of place.

As the novel progresses, its quality continues to improve, before reaching a satisfactory and tantalising conclusion. After a disappointing opening, and though far from perfect, there was just about enough good stuff here to leave this reader satisfied, intrigued, and wondering what Vol. 2 has in store.
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on 1 July 2013
Wow....I couldn't disagree more with the last review if I tried. This is the finest series Marvel has produced in years. It's not written 'in an English accent' it's written about Britain using British characters by one of Britain's finest genre writers.

Paul Cornell (of Doctor Who fame) puts together an eclectic cast that works from the moment they appear. Cornell introduces a new Muslim character but doesn't use that as her defining feature, he returns the Black Knight to action and wipes away years of mistreatment for Captain Britain with one moment of brilliance.

As a kid Marvel UK excited me more than Marvel US because it was set in places I knew and understood. This is one of the reasons why I adore Doctor Who also.

A series cut down in its prime because Marvel wouldn't invest in it because it didn't meet the criteria of having a X or A prefix, Captain Britain and MI13 is the best Marvel comic you haven't read yet.

Spinning out of the abysmal Secret Invasion storyline it was by far the only title that actually made something of the concept.

Do yourself a favour and get it on your shelf.
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on 30 July 2014
In a single script, Paul Cornell does the astonishing - he undoes all the great work Alan Moore, Jamie Delano, and Alan Davies put into developing Captain Britain as a character - and sends him back into the wilderness of second-rate 1970's fiction.

The story: space goblins invade Britain to steal its magic. (I kid you not.)

There are pages and pages of pointless fighting, splashed with utterly irrelevant dialogue. At the end, deus ex machina solves everything.

Captain Britain barely appears - in his own title - but when he does he couldn't be any more generic if you tried. Cornell has tried to make him into some kind of Captain America - the original *failed* vision of Captain Britain. The one that a string of decent writers tried to pull away from.

I'm lucky that I only bought a second-hand copy from Amazon for £15, but it's still money wasted.

Save your cash - Captain Britain's only moment of greatness occurred in the Moore/Delano/Davis story arc. Buy a copy of that if you haven't read it already.
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on 25 August 2009
Just great. Their is a good balance of action and story, and there is no need of prior knowledge of the characters, to really get into it. 1 Of the thew great story arcs to come out of Secret Invasion. I know many people that have been put off by the name (Captain Britain), but past the name is a great read, 1 not to miss!
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on 6 September 2010
I love captain britain, have been a fan throughout his differing phases (I am that old). I do like this novel and am happy to see the cap back in his own title (please can we have more and some union jack novels). However the big shame is actually the current trend by marvel to create big epic serials, tie all the charactors to it thus making you feel the need to buy all of the related novels whilst somehow ruining the charactors own story lines. We have had civil war, secret invasion, dark reigh and more to come. budget wise i think david beckham could just about afford the lot. So whilst I love to see the cap again, enjoyed this series of cap books and loved both the new look and the artwork, time i think for marvel to get back to basics. Give us some down to earth graphic novels where we can take them as that, novels in their own right. In this time of financial gloom I think a lot of us readers would be very happy about that.
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on 15 August 2012
Having never read a Captain Britain comic I was worried that he might come across as a US stereotype of an Englishman. After finding out it was written by Paul Cornell (currently doing a good job on DC's Demon Knights) I figured I'd give it a go.

I found the story to be fresher than a lot of marvel comics as it tends to focus on magic and the legends of Britain as a basis for its back story. Each character seems well thought out and it's nice to see a character like Faiza to add another dimension to the Pagan and Christian legends used.

This book got me in to Captain Britain just as Ed Brubaker's run on Captain America has got me in to that character, it's well worth reading even for those who don't think they would enjoy it as it doesnt come across as annoyingly patriot or stereotypical as you would assume.
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on 28 November 2011
When I first saw this on the shelves, I was worried that we might get a continuation of the parody that was the 'Excalibur' series. Admittedly, New Excalibur was a vast improvement. I bought this volume and started reading it with a bit of trepidation. I need not have worried. At last we had a writer who understands how to write a British superhero, with all the uniqueness that entails. At last we had Captain BRITAIN, not some watered down Captain America clone. I actuallt caught myself humming 'Rule Britannia' as I read the fight scene with the Super Skrull. The scene with all the flags almost brought a tear to my eyes.
Fast paced story, great characterization, wonderful artwork. I went straight out and bought Hell Comes To Birmingham and then Vampire Nation.
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on 21 July 2011
I really want to like Captain Britain. I'm a big fan of Marvel comics and I'm British so it seems like the obvious choice for me. Unfortunately I just can't get into these books. I hate to say it but the British Marvel superheroes just seem like the poor cousins in comparison with the more famous US based characters. Its not that I'm one of those annoying Brits that secretly wishes they were a Yank, I prefer most British stuff to the US alternative but when it comes to comics I like the American characters. I've read quite a few Captain Britain titles (even those by the great Alan Moore) but I've never really managed to get into them.
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