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Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #1

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By Ales Kot and Marco Rudy

Bucky Barnes is a great character. He’s just ripe with juicy stories to tell. It’s a shame that Marvel was doing so little with him. Now that Marvel movies make a jillion dollars and Bucky got a starring role, Marvel has been more willing to utilize the character. After a great first solo series, Bucky is back with an all-new ongoing, the only problem is that it’s not very good.

Let’s start with the star of the issue. Marco Rudy is a wonderful artist. That dude pulled out all the stops in his Marvel Knights Spider-Man mini and this issue is more of the same. The pencils and colors all have a very Heavy Metal tone that makes things very surreal. It’s occasionally difficult to tell which character is speaking, since there are a lot of obscure panels and shadows, but that’s the only gripe. Other than that, you really couldn’t ask for better artwork.

That’s where the positives of the book end. The story is hot garbage. I read this issue twice and I still have no clue what the heck is going on. Thanks to Original Sin, we know that Bucky is the new “man on the wall” and he is definitely doing some manning of the wall. As far as the details of that manning goes, nobody can tell. Kot decided to go for a very abstract form of storytelling that fails on every level. The dialogue is incoherent nonsense that makes this issue feel like work. Let’s leave the trippy crap to Grant Morrison, Jonathan Hickman, and Rick Remender. Those guys know how to do it right.

On artwork alone, this issue is at least worthy of 4 stars. However, the story is so poor that it ends up bringing the art down with it and makes this new series a “don’t buy.” There are far too many great comics, so don’t waste your time and money on this. Poor Bucky deserves better than this.

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