WINTER SOLDIER #17

By: Jason Latour (Writer), Nic Klein (Artist/Colorist)

The Story: Bucky gets to know a little bit more about his target, Tesla Tarasova, as he prepares to right his wrong with her.

The Review: Let me be very clear right off the bat on this one: this issue wasn’t as good as the others and it is due to several little facts. While this is a strong way to start of a review, let me clarify that this is by no mean a bad issue, but it is merely a rather weak one when compared to the previous two by the same creative team.

The very first reason here come to something we have seen quite a lot with this character: his motivation. Bucky, as we have seen over the years, is a character that has been plagued by guilt from the very start of his new introduction to the Marvel universe, something that had reasons to be. It was a good character arc that went from him seeking a way to redeem himself, which lead to him taking the role of Captain America for his fallen comrade, Steve Rogers. It was a superb character arc that made Bucky an absolutely endearing character to follow, with us seeing his adventure as the new sentinel of liberty. However, the status quo called and he could not be Captain America anymore, so we unfortunately saw some kind of regression to the character that we are currently seeing here as well. It seems that Bucky cannot ever catch a break, as he has become the punching bag of the various writers who wants to tell stories about him.

I do get that his past as the Winter Soldier does have tons of potential for storytelling, as it covers many years and can implicate him in so many political situations, it would be impossible to use all the possibilities here. However, it seems that a lot of these stories involve someone who have been wronged by the program surrounding the Winter Soldier or by Bucky himself when he was brainwashed, which makes the wronged seeks vengeance on him. Latour use that very scenario here, peppering it with some humor, some small twist here and there involving Nick Fury and Joe Robards, but as much as he tries to add some of his small touches here and there, this is still very much so the same scenario. I do believe Latour could take this character from himself, if only he could distance himself a bit from the Brubaker version of the character.

Someone who does take this book for himself, though, is Nic Klein, with his skills as both an artist and a colorist. The book is very well drawn and in many ways is very experimental, but sometimes the experiment in question goes a little bit too far. Here, we are treated to some holograms and computer screens that are projected through the panels, which are used to great effects. However, it seems that Latour has chosen to depict them as being in very low resolution, as they are actually a little bit hard to watch. I get that this was probably the very thing he was looking for, however it is not exactly pleasant for the eyes, which makes this experiment fail in my own opinion. Still, he does manage to make one hell of a colorist, as the very first scenes in the snow are stunningly beautiful, while the rest of the issue in space is very well colored and drawn as well.

The Conclusion: While the story comes a little bit to a halt while the author copies a little too much from Brubaker’s book, we are still treated to some great art for about two-third of this book. If it weren’t for the hologram part, this issue would be close to perfection on the artistic level.

Grade: C+

Hugo Robberts Larivière

Grade

Conclusion