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NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby DeadFett » Mon Feb 06, 2012 1:15 am

Story
This was a great start to the series. I loved the set up with the other Soviet sleeper agents. Bru did a great job I thought of bringing new readers up to speed with what had been going on with Bucky. I really enjoyed the espionage aspects of the story. Bucky and Black Widow make a great team as they hunt down the Soviet sleeper agents. I really liked the exchange about the first one to be spotted buys breakfast. I loved the involvement of Red Ghost and Doom here as well. And of course the commie speaking gorilla at the end was great. There wasn't anything I didn't enjoy here.

Art
Guice's art here was simply amazing. Everything looked great. I especially thought the colorist did a great job and really added the work Guice did.

Story - 10
Art - 10
Overall - 10
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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Punchy » Mon Feb 06, 2012 6:06 am

Winter Soldier #1 – Untitled – Brubaker, Guice and Breitweiser

Story – Like pretty much everybody else on Planet Earth, I was a huge fan of Ed Brubaker’s initial run on Captain America. He did the unthinkable, twice, in that not only did he make Captain America seem relevant and cool again, but he managed to bring back a character that, according to the common consensus, was one of the few who should never, ever come back… and make it work. He also managed to kill his main character and make the that work too, so that’s really three times he did the unthinkable. But after I while, I think the book lost something, and I kind of lost interest.

Luckily for me, the launch of this new series brings me right back to what I loved about the first few years of Brubaker’s Cap and shows once again just how good an idea it was to bring Bucky back, because really, he kicks ass.

This issue picks up where Fear Itself #7.1 left off, with the revelation that Bucky wasn’t killed by the Red Skull, but, with the help of Nick Fury, faked his death in order to go back to working where he’s best, in the shadows. Working alongside Black Widow (SET TO STAR IN THE AVENGERS MOVIE! BOOK YOUR TICKETS NOW!) he will handle the kind of off-the-radar shit he couldn’t as Captain America.

What follows is a glorious blend of superheroics, crime noir and espionage thriller. Bucky and Black Widow make a great team, and the whole thing feels a lot more grounded than most Marvel Comics. Until a certain… something at the end.

This story arc emulates a lot of Brubaker’s previous Captain America ones, in that the threat is one that stems from the past. Bucky is forced to face up to his past as the USSR’s premier assassin and the remnants of the Cold War as some of the other soldiers he trained are stolen from Cold Storage. Not only does this ground the action in Bucky’s character and his guilt over what he did as Winter Soldier, but it also provides a serious threat to him, he’s fighting men who he himself trained. To some readers it may seem repetitive to have yet another secret from the past come back to haunt one of the Captain Americas, but when Bucky has such a large amount of history left unexplored, it makes perfect sense. And when it gives you scenes like the shocking way the Soviet Agents come out of deep cover, who’s complaining?

As I said, this issue maintained a sense of realism unusual to Marvel Comics, until a certain something, and that something is a talking Communist Gorilla with a machine gun. This surprising visual comes completely out of the blue and against the grain and really emphasises that the world of the Marvel Universe is one of infinite possibilities, and just when you think you know what you’re reading, writers as talented as Brubaker can still find a way to shock. It also widens the scope of the threat Bucky is facing and, with the last page inclusion of Doctor Doom and Red Ghost, hints at a much larger scale than I had thought.

This was a strong start to what looks like being a vintage series from Ed Brubaker. It’s clear that Bucky Barnes is one of his favourite characters, and that passion really shines through. I can’t wait to see what’s next, and what other talking animal curveballs Brubaker throws at us.

Art – Butch Guice has been a pinch-hitter on Captain America for a few years now, and he’s always done a good job but his work here is something else. He seems to be taking a more expressionistic style, murky and dangerous, which is totally fitting for the tone Brubaker establishes. The angles he uses are often not what you’d expect and that really adds to the unusual style. It’s not quite Steranko, but it’s as close as we’re probably gonna get.

Best Line – ‘We have no idea who we’re fighting’

9/10

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Stephen Day » Mon Feb 06, 2012 11:29 pm

Amoebas wrote:Hmmm - what to pick for next week?

To Gail Simone or not to Gail Simone, that is the question.
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So, is the pick Batgirl #6 or not?
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Thank you Troy for the sig

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Amoebas » Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:07 am

Stephen Day wrote:
So, is the pick Batgirl #6 or not?

Because some have an established anti Gail stance, let's go with the other Bat lady as it's Amy Reeder's first issue.
Batwoman #6
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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby sdsichero » Tue Feb 07, 2012 12:09 pm

Amoebas wrote:Story - (8 for the start + 2 for the end) 5


Holland Oats wrote:Huh??


In Soviet Russia, the math does you

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Amoebas » Tue Feb 07, 2012 12:35 pm

Amoebas wrote:Story - (8 for the start + 2 for the end) 5

Story - (8 for the start but the end is only a 2 so it averages out to a) 5

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Stephen Day » Tue Feb 07, 2012 5:05 pm

sdsichero wrote:


In Soviet Russia, the math does you


Amoebas is a dirty commie? :shock:
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Thank you Troy for the sig

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Amoebas » Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:05 pm

Stephen Day wrote:
Amoebas is a dirty commie? :shock:

Hey - I resent that.


I shower every day.

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby Eli Katz » Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:13 pm

Well, I love this issue. It reads like a perfect extension of Bru's Captain America book, and promises to give us a great mix of super-cool espionage elements and pulpy, over-the-top characters. And wow -- much of the art is an homage to, or in the style of, Steranko. I don't think you can ask for a better superhero book.

STORY: 9
ART: 10
OVERALL: 9.5

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Re: NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 12 - WINTER SOLDIER #1

Postby SilverPhoenix » Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:52 pm

Winter Soldier#1


Introduction:

For me, 2011 was quite a disappointing year in terms of Big 2 Superhero comics. Among the many disappointments, the 2 that sting the most are the end of Dick Grayson being Batman and Bucky being Captain America to make room for their predecessors to either regain the, or become the sole title holder of said role. What made the former disappointment worse was the fact that Dick Grayson went from being in one of the best titles of the year in Scott Snyder’s Detective, to one of the my most underwhelming in Nightwing, which has yet to show any sparks of characterization, story or world building brilliance that the former had, something that has stuck in my mind as dived into Winter Soldier #1. Would this new era for Bucky be as engaging as his run as Captain America was for me, or would be on the same level that I consider Nightwing to be? The answer is just below you.

Writing/Story:

Not wasting any time on the heels of Fear Itself #7.1, the first chapter of “Winter Soldier” dives rights into the world that Bucky thought he could leave behind before events threw him into a Russian Gulag. With a clear mission he and Natasha (Black Widow) set off to begin the first wave of the former’s true redemption. Using his superlative writing skills, Brubaker takes the reader on a fast-paced thrill ride that deftly takes characters that have been starring in mostly Superhero stories and makes them fit into an espionage based world that’s just waiting to be discovered. Another thing that makes this comic even better is how the writer is able to keep things going at the pace that’s been established from the first panel and give welcome layer of nuance to both the story and to its protagonists, which is always welcomed.

Despite the positives, there are a couple of things I feel throw off this aspect of the book from being great instead of Good/Very Good, with the first of these being the first part of the cliffhanger for the main story, which seems out of place considering what went on for the 17 pages prior to this part. Still, such an occurrence can be used in a plausible manner, so that’s a very minor misgiving in the grand scheme of things. Unfortunately, the glossing over of events that led to this part of the story is a much more glaring misstep from where I sit. Despite mixed feelings on Bucky’s time as Captain America, it’s that part of the story that would help a new reader understand why he decided to come back to this part in the first place. Of course, one could say that the story would be weakened by what could be seen as minutia, but for me, it definitely weakened what was overall quite the strong writing job from a writer I expect it from.


Art:

Despite the many misgivings I have about Big 2 comics creatively lately, one of the few things I’ve always given them props for is the expansion of acceptable art styles, because just as recently as 30 years ago, Bruce Guice would’ve never been able to what he’s been able to do with this comic. Understanding that this world is supposed to be dark, mysterious and dangerous, Guice goes to town and delivers a visual treat that flows beautifully with visceral action sequences and amazing character drawings. Not to be left behind in all of this praise, Bettie Bretiweiser deserves her lion’s share of compliments for proving the colors that helped the drawings achieve their maximum effect. I know I won’t be alone in saying that we’re in for something special if the quality of the first issue is any indication.


My Final 22 Cents:

To be completely honest with you, I had a hard time reviewing this comic because not only did I think there was many more places they could’ve gone with Bucky as Captain America, but I didn’t want this book to be another “Nightwing.” Thankfully, this book doesn’t fall into the trap as there is a lot of promise within this package. The one thing I know for sure is that I’ll be paying very close attention to where this book heads next. Despite my misgivings about all of this, I still have hope that this can become one of the next great stories out of Marvel.


The Verdict:

Writing: 8.25
Art: 9.75
Accessiblity: 6



Final Judgment: 8

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