Friday, April 29, 2011

Emails #37: 1918 Epidemic and the Super Soldier Serum

BEN: Hmm! Very interesting points about Cap's early life. I guess Cap would have had to have be born later than I thought to be 18 in the war. Sucks that doesn't match up with your Spanish flu-relation to Cap's creation. But, if the US entered the war in 1942 and Cap's 18, he would have been born in 1923 smack dab in the Roaring. My idea was that Cap would enter the war before the US was officially in, but this made me think again...

The US entered the war in '42 after Pearl Harbor Dec 7, 1941, but isolationist policy had done a number on American fighting readiness. Summary history Our military leaders were scrambling as we were getting crushed in the Pacific. By January, we only had ONE battle-ready division of an estimated 215 needed. (We ended up with 90 divisions through a huge and total restructuring of our entire military.) This calls for drastic measures! We were very limited in how much we could ship to the theater which also called for an overhaul of training and what equipment we sent out. This effort was lead by Lt. Gen. Lesley J. McNair, head of Army Ground Forces, who was all about agile mobile forces. If we can only send so many, might as well make them super soldiers!

RICK: Matches up exactly with flu as creation. Sorta. The particulars of Cap's timeline do have to be nailed down so that events make sense.

First War ends in 1918. That year and the following year are the great flu epidemic. Many believe that it is the first widespread use of biological warfare by a defeated enemy. 20% of all human beings on the planet die of the flu. The super soldier serum and project Rebirth are quickly enacted in response. The goal is to create a super soldier who is immune to biological warfare. 1924-25? Steve Rogers is born. Already the subject of testing from birth, he is watched closely. Small doses of super soldier serum in its early stages are given to him. The fact that they make him weak and sickly and almost kill him several times during childhood does not halt the testing. Many other infants in the program die. Pearl Harbor. America enters the war. Steve tries unsuccessfully several times to join the military to defend Freedom. Nazi spies break into the labs and steal a batch of the most promising serum. It is too dangerous to wait! Steve Rogers must be given the newest serum before the Germans get a chance to perfect the formula. It is now a race against time and the Nazis must not be allowed to win!!

Ahh interesting. So the serum is in response to the flu. I like it. Steve tries to enlist, but is denied, but the reality of the situation sinks into military leadership...

"We have our orders from Lt. General McNair. Mobility is of maximum importance even if it means sacrificing firepower. We need more troops."

"What if we could have mobility AND firepower?"


(Pulls out folder marked TOP SECRET. EYES ONLY.)

"This... is Operation Rebirth. The mission was to create soldiers resistant to chemical and biological warfare."

"Wasn't this old man Richards' work-- to cure the Spanish flu."

"Precisely. There were some unintended side-effects including signs of physical enhancement, although many of the test groups died."

"Physical enhancement? Such as?"

"Improved strength and agility, visual acuity and the like. The effects are unstable, but our doctors are confident we can make it permanent."

"You mean to tell me we have some kind of super soldier serum?"

"Not yet, sir. But, we're very close."

"This could turn the tide of the war. Tell them to do whatever is necessary to get the serum working."

"Yes, sir."

Okay. This is just to see if you are paying attention but I had mapped out a Steve/Flu/Super Soldier Serum timeline previously. The idea is simple. Link events that actually happened with ones that didn't to create the appearance of plausible historical continuity. The Flu 0f 1918/1919 really happened. Fears about chemical/biological agents were real though not as widespread as the fictional account. The Super Soldier Serum is fictional but would easily link up the creation of Cap with the real events of The Great War, The Flu and secret government research and culminating with the events, the real events of WWII. There is a long history of the government doing medical research on live and sometimes unsuspecting civilian populations. The question to ask is, where did the serum come from? It would have taken years to develop and even though it was a secret, German spies would have a high interest in it. This is how the serum is stolen (before we enter the war) and ends up in the creation of the Red Skull and also explains why Cap's version is slightly different and he doesn't end up turning into a red colored super human. The Germans are interested in creating a master race. The Americans are interested in super soldiers. I make the case that there would be no Super Soldier Serum if it weren't for the fear of biological warfare starting with the first war. No fear, no serum, no Cap or Red Skull.

Yep. I just had somehow thought that you were thinking Cap was alive during the epidemic, which I know doesn't make sense, but I had not put the dates in perspective, yet.

A boy doesn't have to go to war to be a hero; he can say he doesn't like pie when he sees there isn't enough to go around.
- Edgar Watson Howe

The basis of our political system is the right of the people to make and to alter their constitutions of government.
- George Washington

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