In March 1941 by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby.
+ ORIGIN STORY
Declared unfit to serve in World War II, weakling Everyman Steve Rogers ingests the Super-Soldier serum and gains incredible strength and agility. The Army sends him overseas to fight the Axis powers and punch Hitler in the mouth.
+ ALTER EGO
Rogers is an art student, and pretends to be an average soldier during the war. But unlike Clark Kent or Peter Parker, Cap doesn’t really have a normal life outside of superheroing…
+ LOVE INTEREST
…which explains why he only dates co-workers. During the war, Cap falls for American spy Peggy Carter (played by Hayley Atwell in the movie). In later comics, Cap falls in love with Peggy’s niece, Sharon, who’s also a spy. So the guy has a type.
+ WHERE HE FITS IN
At the end of World War II, Captain America disappears. Decades later, the Avengers discover him frozen in a block of ice. They thaw him out, and he quickly becomes the team’s leader, tactical genius, and moral core.
+ CURRENT RELEVANCE
Marvel garnered some press in 2007 by ”killing” Captain America. After his ”death,” the company gave fan Stephen Colbert a replica of the superhero’s indestructible shield. (Spoiler alert: Cap survived. Thanks, time travel!) And earlier this year, a minor controversy erupted when Cap faced off in the comic against some antitax protesters carrying Tea Party-ready signs.