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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comic Book Moments – Day 337

Here is the latest cool comic book moment in our year-long look at one cool comic book moment a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the moments posted so far!

Today we look at another notable retcon that Ed Brubaker introduced during his run on Captain America – this time re-examining Bucky’s role in the army…

In Captain America #5, we see a flashback of when Captain America met Karpov, the fellow who ran the Russian super-science group before Lukin, but more importantly, we learn an interesting fact about Bucky that we never knew before…

First off, what fabulous Michael Lark artwork that is!

Secondly, what a neat revelation (the revelation on the last page is “the” moment for me) by Brubaker! This one was a real game-changer; pretty much every writer since have begun to work in Bucky’s secret past as a secret commando into their stories, and with good reason, as it is a really cool idea, and an interesting way to explain why Cap let someone like Bucky fight along his side.


see, now I just want to see the rest…

That IS the hope of these things. ;)

This explanation of Bucky’s past is quite possibly THE most perfect retcon I’ve ever read in comics. It makes perfect sense without conflicting much with what we’ve (I’ve seen) of the character, and it makes him more relevant and interesting that he probably ever has been.

I’m thinking the Human Torch’s and Namor’s speech bubbles were swapped for the entire duration of that scene. “It’s good, then, that we’ve got…” doesn’t sound like something Namor would say and when Cap addresses Namor, Torch is the one that responds. Though, admittedly, “It’s cold as hell, sure, …” doesn’t really sound like Namor either.

So this is the moment when Bucky became a badass then? Very cool – and I’d imagine this started Marvel down the road of resurrecting a character who had heretofore been considered one of the “untouchable dead” (I mean how can you not bring him back at this point, suddenly the character had all of this untapped potential just begging to be explored).

Now if they only did something similar with Uncle Ben . . .

another reason why brubaker is right to be on captain america for bucky being a secret comado doing what cap can not do to get the job done fits it to him being the winter solider

The Crazed Spruce

December 4, 2009 at 7:53 am

How the bloody hell have I not heard of this moment before now?

Holy crap, I have GOT to get that trade paperback….

So what’s the weapon? Somebody spoil this for me, I’m dying here!

And really, it wasn’t a huge leap away from what was established. In the Silver Age WWII flashback stories that Lee/Kirby did in Tales of Suspense, Bucky carried his gun, and used it, too, from time to time. Cap never killed, but Bucky would unrepentantly killed Germans when he got in a tight spot.

It’s Brubaker’s taking the idea to the next logical step that really makes this an effective retcon.

This was amazing work! Lark never looked better and this IS the best recon idea ever! Bucky became instantly cool when before the only thing he ever did was die.

As much as I enjoy this, for number 337, it should have been Thor #337 and Beta Ray Bill :)

Bucky was also pretty hardcore in Avengers/Invaders. (the C4 in his arm was awesome.)

Man, I spent 25 years hating every Cap comic I read, then I pick up Brubaker’s first issue, and BAM, I’m hooked. Not only that, but his run has opened up the rest of Cap’s history to me, and for the first time I’m actually enjoying reading him.

Can anyone recommend some other Cap stuff to read? I’m almost done with Gruenwald’s run now…

@ Matt Beahan

For Cap stories, i would recommend anything written by Mark Waid, or Roger Stern. Also the JM DeMatties [sp?] are very good with great Mike Zeck art. Hope that helps!

I still think resurrecting him was a bad idea. Bucky was Cap’s Gwen Stacy, the death that haunts him forever and makes him question his tactics. I don’t mind the revelations about his war activities, though. As far as I’m aware it doesn’t directly contradict anything that was set in stone before. (It should be mentioned, though, that I’ve only read two issues of Invaders and a couple of flashback stories, so I don’t know much about Bucky’s character as it was established before.) And it does answer the question of why the Invaders would bring an unpowered kid with them on such dangerous missions.

I haven’t read this story, Matt, but I would guess the weapon is Master Man.

Michael Lark is still a good artist, and I’ll still buy his stuff, but I miss his Terminal City style. I bought his recent Daredevil run, for example, and it looked all right, but it didn’t have that same stylishness that Terminal City had. It looked static, like it was traced from photos, although I’m sure it wasn’t. Maybe the problem is the fancy colouring comics have today–counterintuitively, more shading sometimes has the effect of flattening the black-and-white line art it’s filling.

I agree with Mary Warner.

Michael Lark does some good stuff here, will def have to check out Terminal City…what else has he done?

Gotham Central and Legend of the Hawkman.

When I first found out that they brought Bucky back, I thought it was the worst Idea I’d ever heard, well next to “Heroes Reborn”. It seemed on the face of it to be a stupid opportunistic/indulgent stunt of the worst kind.
To my great surprise the story was great! So I’m fine with the retcon.

@ Mat Beahan

Yeah I second danjack’s suggestion,you pretty much can’t go wrong with those.
And the Mike Zeck/John Beatty artwork was awesome.


I absolutely agree with you about the coloring, sometimes it seems like the colorist just doesn’t know when to stop.

Uncle Ben was a super-spy who recruited Richard and Mary Parker into the service. They worked together on a variety of cases. But when the Red Skull discovered them, he killed Richard and Mary, so Ben had to flee. Using an early model LMD and an ex-CIA “burglar,” he faked his own death to protect May and Peter. He’s been watching over them from the shadows ever since.

Have the comics ever stated Uncle Ben’s profession? I don’t think so. Why not? Because Aunt May had to keep his intelligence career a secret, of course.

Why was Uncle Ben so adamant about doing the right thing? Because he learned this credo from his government spymasters. Perhaps he heard “With great power comes great responsibility” directly from John F. Kennedy, whom he reported to on a mission. (Ben later learned the Red Skull was behind JFK’s assassination–another reason the Skull had to kill him.)

There’s your Uncle Ben retcon for you. Now we just need someone to write it up and put it in the comics.

Speaking of cool Cap moments, you should include the THOR #390 sequence in which Cap becomes the first person other than Thor (I think) to lift Mjolnir.


I’m too wussy to ever kill anyone, but if they ever do that Uncle Ben retcon I probably will assassinate the writer and editor anyay. Just a warning.

Cap lifted Mjolnir?!?!? That sounds so wrong.

When you go on a killing spree, Mary, don’t shoot the messenger (me). I can’t help it if nobody knew Uncle Ben the super-spy was still alive.

Cap’s lifting Mjolnir is a GOOD moment, not a bad one. If Brian includes it, you’ll see how Marvel pulled it off.

I wouldn’t really kill anybody. I’d just want to. And besides, you don’t kill people for suggesting ideas, only for actually carrying them out. I’m sure there are all sorts of horrible story ideas that get proposed, but later get shot down by editors, or the writer has second thoughts. That’s why they have story conferences– to figure out which ideas are bad ones before it’s too late.

Meh. I don’t question the quality of the work, and the art is great. But I guess I’ve seen way too many “forget everything you thought you knew” retcons. Wow, Bucky was a full-fledged merc with more kills than Ultimate Zombie Amalgam Frank Castle/Deathstroke the Terminator. Unfortunately I read ABOUT this moment before I got the chance to read the actual comic, and the idea that they were doing all kinds of retcons on Bucky Barnes just left me cold.

The Year of Moments has become my favorite comics feature and thank you for keeping it interesting for 11 months and counting. Now how about something from Kingdom Come? Fables?

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