Tag Archives: Bucky

What If Captain America Hadn’t Vanished During World War II?

You guys can all remember the basics from last week. Captain America and Bucky beat up Baron Zemo, Baron Zemo launches a missle with the two of them attached and then Uatu shows up to tell you how much watching he enjoys watching things. (Spoilers: It is a lot.)

So this time around, Cap and Bucky manage to catch up to the missile. Welcome to a chilling alternate reality where motorcycles are slightly faster and Ghost Rider is unstoppable. *Shiver* Anyway, Cap and Bucky defuse the missile, landing it safely and escaping with their lives not frozen. Good times.

Meanwhile, Baron Zemo escapes in a rocket ship that promptly explodes and returns to his boss, the Red Skull. Red Skull is flat out chilling like an anti-semitic nazi pimp in his solid gold Bone Throne (So named because it is made of solid gold bones, not because it is a solid gold throne that he bones in. Although he might.) waiting for the good word that Zemo has finally killed that accursed Captain America. When he finds out that Zemo hasn’t killed accursed anyone, he shoots Zemo and kicks him down a staircase. What a monster. Oddly, he also takes a few minutes to explain to a lackie that he hasn’t actually killed Zemo, he’s only been shot with a new, highly experimental Put-Somebody-To-Sleep-In-The-Basement-For-Roughly-Twenty-Years-Anator. Bet that won’t come up again. His great foe/former employee safely stashed downstairs, Skull blows up the castle and fucks off out of the story, leaving his nazi legions to die. What a dick.

Time passes and Captain America and Bucky (Now called Buck for some terrible reason.) are fighting Commies and Hydra in the sixties, taking time only to mention in passing how tragic it was that Nick Fury is dead. Seems a grenade landed a little close to his left. Seriously. That is hilarious. Anyway, President Johnson calls Cap into his office and offers him a position as head of SHIELD*. “I was going to give it to Nick Fury,” says Johnson. “But he’s been dead for ten years.” Cap declines but suggests they offer Buck the job.

Unfortunately, Buck only keeps the job for about ten minutes before everyone gets randomly attacked by the Hulk (Hulk attacks are almost routine in the Marvel Universe at this point. There’s a guy on the radio every morning telling you if it’s safe to be an army guy in the desert or not.). The Hulk attack goes disasterously as Cap is knocked out and it’s up to Buck to save everyone’s favorite teenage asshole Rick Jones from getting buildinged in the face. Guys, I think I hate Rick Jones.

So Rick recovers back at SHIELD HQ**, and Buck tells Cap that it might be time for him to hang up the old cowl with little wings on it. Cap tells him it’s not so easy being Captain America and Buck replies that heading SHIELD ain’t so simple either. They then swap jobs for a week. Unfortunately for everyone, Rick wakes up in time to hear all of this and blackmails his way into being the new Buck. Except they just call him Rick. Finally, a super hero with a lamer name than the Whizzer.

So basically everything starts working out. Bucky Cap’s doing a great job fighting Hydra and hooking up with attractive spy person Sharon Carter and Steve Rogers: Director of SHIELD is actually digging being in charge of  a bunch of awesome spies.. It’s almost as if we could have completely skipped over the whole Bucky: Agent of SHIELD thing. But, of course that would be ridiculous.

Bucky Cap and Steve mount one final push on Hydra and its mysterious hooded boss, the Supreme Hydra. No idea who that guy could possibly. Oh, wait, no, it’s the basement liberated Baron Zemo, driven mad by his years of starving to death in an exploded french castle. Bucky, Steve and Sharon slip in to Hydra headquarters in disguise but are quickly revealed for spies when a lonely Hydra agent notices the way the uniform clings to Sharon. It’s like Metal Gear Solid all over again but with less stupid war fetishing and implied vagina hiding.

A fight breaks out and Zemo shoots Bucky before Cap knocks him into a pit of lava, which is pretty high up on the list of cool ways to kill old nazis. Unfortunately, and twenty years late, Bucky finally dies. His last words: “I should have known there was only one Captain Americuuuuuuuuhh.” Jesus, Steve. A last “Hey, you did okay, pal.” before he died wouldn’t have been out of order. Dick.

So, at a funeral in the rain, Sharon chews out Cap for training Bucky back in WWII***, and Steve wanders around his secret Captain America museum, wondering what if he did the right thing. Then Rick bursts in in his Bucky costume and tells Steve that he, Rick, wants to be Captain America. So yes, Steve. It WAS all for nothing.

*Strategic Headquarters for Intelligence, Espionage and Lion Defense, true believers!

**It stands for HeadQuarters, dumb ass!

***Seriously? World War 2. It was a big deal. Ask your grampa.

 

What If The Invaders Had Stayed Together After World War II And Also Someone Cared?

What If the Invaders had stayed together?

 

What If takes a different direction this week by giving us a chilling tale of alternate realities that absolutely nobody cares about. Come on, Marvel. You’re only four issues in, you can’t give us an X-Men story or something?

Anyway, we open on a poorly drawn Captain America and Bucky doing battle with Baron Zemo in their infamous last battle of World War 2. Zemo handily defeats them both with his flare gun that fires robots and does other things and then dresses the two of them in military fatigues and ties them to a plane. The reason for this has something to do with Zemo being angry that there is a pink mask glued to his face which is understandable.

Suddenly, Cap’s shield appears from nowhere and frees the two heroes. This is never explained and the Watcher seems to be expecting it so clearly whatever the hell happend, it’s on me to figure it out. I dunno, guys. I know my Marvel comics pretty well and I have no idea what happened. Anyway, the plane is launched, Cap falls into the ocean to be frozen and defrosted in the sixties and Bucky dies. Forever.

Next we get to see what the rest of the Invaders are doing. It’s all pretty boring with the exception of the Original Robot Human Torch and his half-naked buddy, Toro who are trying to save Hitler from shooting himself. This is accompanied by the hilarious picture of Hitler with a gun to his head, looking really embarrassed. You can also make out the dead legs of Eva Braun. Torch and Toro bust in and Hitler tries to blow up the building, but Team Fire Guy is too quick for him and they SET HIM THE FUCK ON FIRE. What’s left is a pile of smoldering scabby horror with an arm sticking out of it. It’s HILARIOUS.

So the Fire Guy Express meet up with the rest of the boring Invaders and head back to Washington, DC where President Truman can congratulate everyone on that war they won. Between Toro and Namor, we are then treated to the former President sitting around a war table with a lot of mostly naked dudes. They were truly the greatest generation.

So Truman tells everyone that he’s just recieved word that Cap and Bucky are dead. Luckily, he has spares. Out comes new Cap and Bucky played by the Spirit of ‘76 (Not to be confused with the regular Spirit who was created by Will Eisner and doesn’t suck) and… some kid who used to play baseball and likes Bucky. America is saved! Truman also brings out Ms. America and the Whizzer (whom I was delighted to learn apparently got his powers from a mongoose!) and suggests that they all team up and defend America from Japan. Then he drops a couple of bombs on Japan, winning the war and giving birth to Marvel Godzilla.

Post war, the President invites the Invaders to continue fighting for America, but… y’know, maybe don’t call yourselves the Invaders. Since we’re not supposed to be invading things anymore. They change their name to the All-Winners Squad which is terrible but whatever, I’m just the guy who reviews old comics and am forbidden to intervene. That done, Torch and Toro take a vacation, Worf-style so Torch can visit his inventor.

Torch reveals his origin story, which includes being built by some scientist named Professor Horton. Horton tried to create a perfect android but failed when the android instantly caught fire, a rather serious design flaw. He then tried to use his incredibly dangerous creation for profit and the Torch fled. Nice on, Prof. Way to lose the PERPETUALLY ON-FIRE MAN.

Torch and Toro arrive at Horton’s home in Boston but find that something is amiss when they discover that the professor is actually a crappy robot. They are then captured by the Torch’s brother he never knew he had, Adam-II. Adam-II is a weird looking red faced guy with a big steel mohawk and a fondness for creating non-crappy robots, outdoing his father on basically all counts. Adam-II knocks the robot and the naked teenager out and throws them in a big metal room with the real professor Horton. Adam-II then begins filling the room with water in an effort to drown his android brother.

It’s not a great plan.

Luckily, the spouting water manages to miss Torch’s arms and torso (It’s right in the book. “Thankfully, the spouting water missed my arms and torso!”) and he is able to escape and also summon another American looking super hero who just happened to be in the area, the Patriot. Patriot frees everyone who wasn’t already freed and then Professor Horton explains that Adam-II is planning to replace a local Boston congressperson. The (sigh) All-Winners Squad shows up (Including the new glasses-wearing-for-some-reason  Ms America, which I am pretty into.) and everyone grabs a newspaper and runs off to look for their respective congressman to check for robot impersonation.

Fake Cap and Fake Bucky manage to pull JFK and OF COURSE, IT’S HIM, he’s the only one you’ve heard of. They’re able to identify JFK as a robot because of his fake silver robot eyes. “Blast!” says Adam-II who is also there, further tipping Cap and Bucky off that this might be the right place. “I forgot to add proper eyes in my haste!”

Cap and Bucky fight some more androids, (a theme in this issue) and then Cap summons the All-Winners Guys with a flare stick he keeps in his fake shield. The All-Winners arrive and Adam-II makes a break for it by stealing JFK’s car and immediately crashing it into a building. Then he burns to death and explodes. Seriously. So Cap shows up and reveals that he’s not actually Cap. Which we already knew. But he’s also not the Spirit of ‘76, he’s Patriot who FOUND the Spirit of ‘76 who was DRESSED as Cap and then Spirit of ‘76 died of severe android beatings and the Patriot stripped him and put on his Cap uniform so that Captain America could force Adam-II to crash JFK’s limo.Then everyone cries. This comic is nuts.