With the Captain America series getting relaunched a couple weeks ago, the previous series evolves into a telling of the secret origin of Captain America and Bucky from the beginning.
I'm not usually a fan of the retelling of origins but when you look at the creators involved, Ed Brubaker, Marc Andreyko, Chris Samnee and Bettie Breitweiser, how could you not want to pick this up? The original story of Bucky was he lived on an Army base as the base mascot. He stumbled into Steve Rogers' barracks as he was changing into his Captain America suit and soon became his partner. When Brubaker brought back Bucky as the Winter Soldier, some tweaks were made to his origin. We get to see that here and even though it changes who he originally was, it makes so much more sense.
Bucky has become a great character and seeing his early days only makes him a better and stronger character. Seeing him growing up before becoming Cap's partner adds layers to the character and makes me want to re-read the Winter Soldier stories once again.
The art team of Chris Samnee and Bettie Breitweiser really nails the time period. I'm not sure if I can articulate how much I loved just looking at this issue. Bucky's pre-Cap origin isn't dragged out and there is plenty here that won't feel like just another retelling of what we already know.
I'm not happy that Bucky died during Fear Itself. This issue makes me like the character even more and just reminds me that he met his fate against the Red Skull's daughter. I'm also not crazy about the fact that this is issue #620. I understand there's reasons for this but that doesn't mean I have to like them. Both of these are not complaints against this issue though (I simply didn't have anything bad to say about it).
Going back and retelling the secret origin of characters is a risky move, in my opinion. Usually the chunk of the origin is already known and not a whole lot is added. Because we've seen snippets of the changes in Bucky's story, seeing here in more detail really helps to sell how great of a character he is. Of course having Ed Brubaker writing (along with Marc Andreyko) helps to add credibility to this series. The art by Chris Samnee and color art by Bettie Breitweiser makes me happy. I'm not thrilled that Bucky died in Fear Itself or that the Captain America series had been renumbered and relaunched (with this series taking over the numbering) but this was a great and fun issue. I can't wait to see what this creative team has in store for us next issue.