What’s up everyone! Welcome to Beyond The Panel. Coming at you today with talk about Falcon & Winter Soldier #2! After that first issue? I was sold on everything else to follow. You pick up this book hoping to just see these two friends kick ass together. A bullet train that just doesn’t stop. And then this turned into so much more than that. Especially when uncovering a conspiracy turned into running into a kid capable of knocking both grown men unconscious. Yikes.
They did not lie when saying that this was going to be an action packed book. These two just finished getting their ***es handed to them, and in this very next issue they were already quick to jumping back into the fire. Then again, wouldn’t you? HYDRA once more is back from the dead, they’ve been plotting behind the scenes with a new scheme no one saw coming, and above all they got beat bad by a kid who is probably half their age. This second issue did exactly what I was hoping for after the events of the first. I said that pacing and momentum will be key in keeping us at the edge of our seats, and that was what we got. It was one thing knowing that these two would have to make their way from one end of a high-speed train to the other . With eight carriages and eight kinds of killer on board. Though it was another thing to see them go through each carriage filled with assassins.
What caught me off guard about it was the intensity of the action. There was no punches pulled for them, and it made a difference seeing that there was even some concern from them about the number of enemies they would have to go through. Aside from that was everything which came after. You couldn’t have prepared yourself for who was waiting for them at the end of the train, or how this person would further complicate this mission.
In a book like this, you don’t entirely expect character development. There wasn’t much to take from this kind of team-up, but there was certainly engagement from Sam and Bucky trying to find a middleground in how they deal with HYDRA. It sucked to see them butting heads the way they did. You sometimes get used to them being buddy buddy because of the movies, but things are different with the comics. Particularly when both have been Cap, seen their share of horrors, and made the hard calls in one way or another. The only difference is that Bucky allowed his experiences to control his actions. While Sam is the kind of guy who tries to hold on to his moral compass no matter what.
One thing I did come to like about this book is the banter between Sam and Bucky. These two butt heads a lot over what they think is doing the right thing under these circumstances, but when they were on the same page? Funny stuff when thrown into a dire situation and taking everything in stride. It made a big difference when at the end of the day you want to indulge in those moments which make the statement that these two have been through a lot together. You don’t have that sort of wit that another person works off of, without being that close. Overall, it was just enough without taking away from the seriousness.
The interior art was spectacular. It was all about the action with this one, and this art team did not disappoint. When you read that Sam and Bucky would be going through eight carriages full of assassins on a high-speed train? That seems like a lot for any artists to take on. Fortunately, as the penciler, Frederico Vincentini was up to the task. I was impressed with how there was a panel for every carriage they took action in. No two people looking the same, and it was crazy that for HYDRA agents they could look so normal too. The panel layout was great too. For so much going on, it made sense that they would shuffle between so many styles which gave us a little bit of everything. You saw agents getting beat down, Sam and Bucky took their share of licks too. then after that blood and bodies flying in every direction. You gotta love the violence which breaks out when HYDRA is involved. Beyond this, impressive work with the energy put into these characters. You could read the frustration on their faces, the snark, even the shock from everything which unfolded.
Falcon & Winter Soldier #2 was entertainment value at its finest. When someone hypes up a train scene? It should look a little something like this! It would be a crime if you got anything less. This creative team understands the concept of going big or going home with a book featuring two action heroes.