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Review: Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3

Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3

Previously, “Issue #2

Last time we left our intrepid space assassins, Bucky and Daisy were headed to the planet Mer-Z-Bow, whose queen Bucky has been dreaming about, to track down the source of Loki’s Illum supply. And that’s where shit gets weird. In a giant, glaring plot twist I managed to miss entirely last issue, the guy who shot Bucky with the drug in the first place was revealed to actually be an old and wizened Bucky from the future! He popped up and introduced himself to Daisy while Loki was busy mindfucking the current timestream’s Bucky, and she for whatever reason neglects to pass this along to her partner.

Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3 | Fury's infodump

Now that we’re all caught up, let’s get into the meat of this issue. Bucky and Daisy pore over Fury’s files on Ventolin Xtal, Queen of the Pao’ree, a race of pacifist telepaths, and discover that she means to abolish their monarchy. Fury postulates this would unquestionably lead to war with the other races in their sector, and thusly, she must be eliminated to prevent the deaths of millions. Upon landing on the hippie drug planet, we discover that, though the Pao’ree are pacifists, they are not unarmed. Though after insisting that our duo give up their weapons, they seem friendly enough, and almost immediately grant Bucky his requested audience with Ventolin.

We are also informed, though our heroes are not, that two other ships have arrived in secret on Mer-Z-Bow in the past few days. A quick cutaway shows us that one of them is obviously Old Bucky, as he spys on our heroes from outside the city, muttering to himself about synchronicity and slippery floors, but giving us absolutely no idea what his actual goal is.

Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3 | Old Buck

Upon meeting the queen, Bucky starts to gets spacy, obviously remembering his dream, and when Ventolin mentions that she dreamt him as well, Marco Rudy kicks into high gear, delivering a trippy falling in love scene that somehow perfectly gets the point across. Unless Bucky’s fooling, he is not about to kill this woman. (Maybe that’s why Old Buck is back. To finish what he couldn’t the first time around?)

Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3 | First meeting

In another cutaway, a Pao’ree guard patrol comes across an unidentified ship. Is it Old Buck’s? As the guards investigate, we see a hand click a switch, and immediately their senses are overwhelmed, rendering them ineffectual in combat. Pao’ree blood splatters everywhere as the guards are violently slashed to pieces, by… dun-dun-dun! Crossbones! And as it finally becomes clear who the third ship belongs to, it also becomes clear that I have no fucking idea what is going on here.

Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3 | Crossbones

Back with Bucky and the queen, who are hanging out in flowery fields under a starry sky, she reveals to him that in her dream, after they kissed, he killed her. Bucky, with amore in his eyes, swears he won’t, and you fucking believe it.

So, Marco Rudy. The man continues to blow me away this issue, particularly with how he shows how Bucky cannot get this dream-alien-woman out of his mind, casting her profile behind the panels of Daisy and Bucky’s Fury infodump. And he plays the first meeting of Bucky and Ventolin perfectly as well. Though the dialogue is stock, the images burst with how completely the two are focused on each other to the exclusion of all else. This book is fast becoming my favorite ever, simply because the art is allowed to speak more loudly than the words.

Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier #3 | Fade out

About Chanse Horton (47 Articles)
Chanse Horton was raised in a cave by Tibetan Death Buddhists and fed a steady diet of good comics and terrible B movies. He currently resides in Atlanta, GA, with his wife and two direwolves.

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