FEAR ITSELF 7.1 = Captain America
Many drew ire from the fact that Fraction killed Bucky. Plain and simple. His return was maligned but Brubaker wove golden threads and got the WINTER SOLDIER into the successor role for Rogers and Buckycap lit Marvel afire. That said, Bru's job of making him an interesting character, from Winter Soldier to Cap, deserves immense plaudits. The intensity of Bucky under Ed is glorious...but not so much with Bendis or Fraction. Nonetheless, this eulogy issue springs some dramatic and crafty moves. It's nifty the way there are characters pulling the strings and the machinations, as endearing as they are, are selfish but justifiably so. It isn't OMD but it's a nice springboard for 2012. The setup is nice as Marvel teased some new Winter Soldier offerings and opponents of the same vein recently, and what stands out, besides Bru and Guice's spectacular work, is the fact that there is still angst in the issue amid a sense of secrecy, redemption...and more importantly, hope. The last page is a doozy and really beckons well with the creative team. I expect big things.
As for this issue, it is sneaky yet brilliantly done. It leaves a lot of threads dangling, which I'm sure Ed will address in due time. I must say shame on Marvel for lying though. When you read the issue, you'll know. The off thing was Hickman's FURY is a million times macho and robust, yet Bru's is more subtle and less sublime. Overall, the virtuous sense is not lost in the issue and it to me...read better than the entire FI event combined. Cheers Bru...you have stones!!
FEAR ITSELF: THE FEARLESS #2
It's a huge roster of creators but to me, Bagley and Yost stand out. That said, the focus on Valkyrie is neatly done yet she still isn't that interesting. Her mission is though, but from Asgard to Sec. Avengers to her wayward antics in the issue 1...it's just bland at times, and feels forced on the other hand. There's a nice dangling hole for the Vamp fans, but having Valkyrie lead a charge is not the brightest plan to me. Crossbones does it in style and more Sin to come is full of promise...but 2 issues in, not much light is shed except excavational searches for hammers and I think a search for these weapons should have more Odin and his minions. You cannot leave that duty to one Asgardian and the likes of a pissed off Cap. Nonetheless, the art is vibrant and the issue is better paced than its predecessor, but with 10 more to go...I'm just not feeling an exciting vibe from this book.