The GeeksverseLatour’s Winter

Latour’s Winter
Published on Friday, August 24, 2012 by

Jason Latour is taking over Winter Soldier #15. He has a successful run at Marvel and as an independent creator with 12 Gauge Comics that  is now handling the killer Bucky.CBR covering Fan Expo has the news and an interview with Latour.

The side kick of the American symbol was corrupted.  During World War II, a young man named James “Bucky” Barnes became the protector one of the Marvel Universe’s most powerful living symbols, Captain America, when he took the position of Cap’s masked sidekick Bucky. Buckys have a history of going away and popping back up again. Remasked more than Aunt May has been revived or Spider-Man has been cloned, Bucky is a recurring character. The most controversial and potentailly coolest recycling of the kid side kick all grown up was the Winter Soldier. Still carrying on a cold war mission he took his war personally to Captain America.

As Bucky, Barnes conducted the morally murky actions that a symbol of justice and freedom couldn’t be seen doing like assassinations. He was good at his job too. So good in fact that when the Soviet Union found his badly injured body still alive in the final days of World War II they turned him into the brainwashed, cybernetic, master assassin known as the Winter Soldier. Years later, Bucky would come face to face with his old partner who used the power of the Cosmic Cube to restore his identity. It also restored Bucky’s memory of every bloody thing he did as the Winter Soldier, which horrified him.

In writer Ed Brubaker’s acclaimed “Captain America” run Bucky began a quest to repent for his bloody past. That quest continued in February of this year when Brubaker launched an ongoing “Winter Soldier” series, and this January it will enter new phase as Jason Latour (“Loose Ends,” “Untold Tales of the Punisher MAX”) takes over writing duties on the series. Latour’s run was announced today at Marvel’s “Avengers Vs. X-Men” panel at Fan Expo Canada in Toronto and CBR News spoke with him about his plans for the series.

CBR News: Jason, you’re primarily known as an artist but in the past several months you’ve really been making a name for yourself as a writer with your work on your creator-owned 12 Gauge Comics crime series “Loose Ends” and your story in “Untold tales of the Punisher MAX” #2. How does it feel to be given the reigns of a major monthly Marvel title like “Winter Soldier?” How did this opportunity come about for you?

Jason Latour succeeds Ed Brubaker as writer of “Winter Solider” with January’s #15
Cover by Declan Shalvey

Jason Latour: I was surprised to get the chance, simply because I didn’t think this character would ever be in play. Brubaker’s work on this character has been great. He’s really built such a strong and compelling foundation– that when the possibility was introduced my mind went off like a nuclear test site.

As for how it came about — I’d drawn a few stories for my editor, Lauren Sankovitch, in the past and I’d made it clear I was interested in writing for hire, too. Fortunately she seemed to like my creator-owned work and when the time came to cast the book she asked me if I would be interested.

Bucky Barnes is a man of violence with a troubled past and so is the Punisher. If my research is correct that’s also the case with Sonny Gibson, one of the protagonists of “Loose Ends.” Is this a coincidence or is there just something about troubled, mortally murky protagonists that stokes the fires of your imagination?

Yeah, I’m clearly drawn to those kinds of characters. Sonny and Bucky strike a chord with me because deep down, I have some sense of what it’s like to be an optimistic, even hopeful person who’s felt beaten or worn down by the world. I’m just lucky that my experiences are more trivial, or more abstract, and I get to project those into fiction. In the case of all those characters, they’ve seen the ravages of war and even themselves played a part in causing pain, death and suffering for others. They may have done some really noble, really great things too but it’s that pain that sticks. Bucky and Sonny are kind of fighting that pain — I’d say Frank Castle probably succumbed to it, if he ever felt it at all.

Where Bucky is different is that being a superhero he’s theoretically capable of overcoming those things. If there’s no light at the end of the tunnel he can at least try to bend heaven and earth to make one. As to how successful he’ll be…

What are some of the specific elements that you find most interesting about Bucky Barnes? Which aspects of his character are you interested in exploring in this series?

At first glance Bucky is a man struggling with what seems like two very polar sides of his nature. But if you read at the great origin stuff Brubaker, [Marc] Andreyko and [Chris] Samnee did — it’s pretty clear that the makings of the Winter Soldier were there all along. He did some awful things for the Soviets, but if things play out differently who’s to say he wouldn’t have committed those atrocities for the U.S.?

So one of the things I’m seeking to delve into is — what exactly is the line? Where and when does Bucky Barnes end and the Winter Soldier begin? There may not be an answer to that question — and that possibility is a very scary thing he’ll try to face and learn to live with.

2 Responses
    • I hadn’t realized Winter Soldier was in danger of cancelation, which is why Brubaker had made plans to wrap his run up by #15. I’m glad the book is going to continue, I like the character. LaTour should do well.

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