Beginning life as a show tentatively tethered to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has grown into its own beast, weaving complex character arcs with exciting action. Though it’s continued to be inspired by the events of the various films, it has distanced itself and created its own little corner of the live-action Marvel world. Along the way, it’s also been bolder about pulling elements from the comic books into the storytelling, much to the show’s benefit
Season 4 of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been especially adept at this, highlighting both Ghost Rider(s) and Life Model Decoys. In between these bigger plots, however, it’s also given fans a deep cut from the page that serves as an ongoing connection to the MCU as a whole: Jeffrey Mace. Known alternately by the codename Patriot, Mace was first introduced as the mysterious new head of S.H.I.E.L.D. It’s been clear from the start, however, that he was keeping something from his fellow spies. To help unpack this slow-burn storyline, let’s take a look at the Patriot’s secrets — and how they connect him to the larger MCU.
Who is the Patriot?
A few months back, we took a deep dive into the comic book history of Jeffrey Mace and his alter-ego the Patriot, but it’s worth a refresher in light of recent events on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Mace first appeared way back in 1941 during issue #4 of the Timely Comics book The Human Torch — which focused on the android and future S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Jim Hammond, not the Fantastic Four member. In the books, the Patriot was a superb athlete and combatant from Brooklyn inspired to don a star-spangled outfit after seeing Captain America.
The Patriot would go on to become one of Timely’s biggest hits, appearing in multiple Marvel Mystery Comics over the next two years. As the decades went by, Timely became Marvel and the Patriot fell by the wayside. The ‘60s, however, proved a time of renewed interest in superheroes following the resurrection of Captain America and the birth of comics’ Silver Age. To help explain how Cap had been having adventures after being frozen, Marvel posited that a number of men had taken up his mantle (along with Bucky’s). Mace, it turns out, was the third man to hold the shield, bringing his original inspiration full circle.
Like Steve Rogers, Mace would eventually return to comics with a number of World War II-set stories in the ‘70s, with his history and tenure as Captain America recently condensed and retold in 2010’s Captain America: Patriot. Outside of those appearances, however, Mace has never matched his original popularity, though the mantle of Patriot has lived on thanks to Young Avenger Eli Bradley, the grandson of former Super Soldier and Captain America Isaiah Bradley.
Jeffrey Mace, Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Marvel isn’t alone in borrowing characters from the comics and drastically reworking them for film and television, but they usually do so with reverence to their origin. The Jeffrey Mace we first encounter in ‘Meet the New Boss’, the second episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s current season, is a good bit younger than his comic counterpart.
Source by screenrant…..