I had been looking forward to reading this since it arrived in the post many months ago. I jumped onto Brubaker’s Cap run with the Death of Captain America so finally getting to see were Bucky’s return and rise started was a thrilling proposition.
The story itself did not disappoint. It is in keeping with the rest of Ed Brukaker’s high-stakes take on Captain America with the hunt for the Winter Soldier and attempting to take on the conniving Ex-Soviet General, Aleksander Lukin being the centre pieces of the book. It delves into Cap’s origins and tweaks them to make both Bucky slightly older than he was previously and to obviously allow him to survive the fateful explosion that initially killed him. Thankfully the revelation that he is an ultimate assassin for the Soviets still carries weight after the fact and you can see why they are turning this tense and gripping story into the next Captain America movie. It is primed to be an amazing film. It has World War II aspects and flashbacks, spies and those pesky commies! It will help differentiate Captain America from the other Marvel movies and bring in elements of the greatest spy stories and films that the Cap comics constantly draw from.
The book is also peppered with moments that carry huge weight such as Cap using the Cosmic Cube to restore Bucky’s memory. It is Cap showing that he will do everything he possibly can to redeem Bucky, even if it means re-shaping reality to his wishes. Which when you think about it is a pretty big deal because it is a selfish move on the part of the usually unselfish to the point of annoyance Steve Rogers. A move that is oddly very much in keeping with the core of the character even though it breaks one of the fundamental virtues of him in the process.
Winter Soldier was a great read and if you still have to read it, do yourself a favour and pick it up. Even if it just so you can sit smugly in the movie theatre when Captain America: The Winter Soldier comes out and proclaim you knew about it before it was cool.