Captain America #8
Marvel Comics (September, 2005)
“The Winter Soldier” part 1
WRITER: Ed Brubaker
ARTIST: Steve Epting
CO-INKER: Mike Perkins
COLORIST: Frank G. D’Armata
LETTERER: Chris Eliopoulos
ASSISTANT EDITORS: Andy Schmidt, Nicole Wiley, and Molly Lazer
EDITOR: Tom Brevoort
Cap surveys the damage in Philadelphia, helping victims get out of the rubble, but he is distracted by the arrival of AIM, who wants what’s left of their tech back. When Cap takes out the “beekeepers” they send in robotic/cybernetic? soldiers called MODOCs (not to be confused with MODOK because the Advanced Idea Mechanics aren’t exactly creative with names) to fight him, but one is stopped by a man who appears to be Bucky, not that he knows the name. Later, Fury fills him in on the Winter Soldier, a Soviet boogeyman assassin that with modern imaging is shown to be Bucky. Released from statis only for missions, the Winter Soldier is theoretically responsible for a number of top officials’ deaths over the years, but Cap refuses to admit it could be Bucky. It may be possible because in 1945 a Russian sub found his frozen body in the icy waters just as the Avengers later did Steve Rogers.
What they got right: Thankfully Brubaker didn’t try to blame JFK or some other real incident on the Winter Soldier…though I take that back with a middle finger if he or anyone else does later on. It’s a good set-up to this mystery and flows well from the previous arc. Despite the trade padding Brubaker is finding a way to keep the serialized style going despite the decompressive storytelling
What they got wrong: I can see some fans being turned off by jumping around time but I wasn’t too distracted by it. The dark coloring and near-paint art style aren’t completely working for me, but I have a negative history with the fully painted art that hits a reflex with me.
What I think overall: It’s a good start to the story and I would have rather had this than the previous issue’s sadistic deconstruction of Monroe.