Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s “Captain America: White” #1 offers quite the bang for the reader’s buck! In both chapters in this issue, Loeb takes readers by the hand and steps into the thoughts of Steve Rogers, a man out of time. Through Loeb’s story, readers learn just how displaced Rogers is in the timeline. Rogers never left World War II; he brought it with him, and some guilt snuck along as well. The writer shows readers just how compassionate the super soldier can be, but he doesn’t leave Cap there; Cap gets into adventures and punches some Nazis, too.
Artist Tim Sale and colorist Dave Stewart pack a wide range of styles and textures into the issue, from watercolors to heavily shadowed studies in spot blacks and ink usage. Loeb’s script works to Sale’s strengths; these two have worked on so many projects together that the line between story and art truly blurs. Sale puts the major action scenes in bombastically large panels and blows out the backgrounds for the emotional moments. Through it all, however, Sale keeps the story flowing, the characters moving and the artwork organic. Stewart deftly interprets Sale’s stylistic choices and adjusts the color palette and saturation accordingly. Between the two of them, “Captain America: White” #1 is sure to produce innumerable desktop wallpapers and serve as an inspiration for generations of artists to come. Each panel is worth studying individually, but some of those panels transcend “worth studying” to become individual pieces of artwork worthy of framing.
Letterer Richard Starkings’ contribution to “Captain America: White” #1 cannot be overstated. He owns the letters and makes them dance across the page. He brings emphasis and amazement, but he never crowds the artwork. As a matter of fact, Starkings doesn’t even contribute any sound effects to the issue, despite the fact a battle with Nazi forces occurs midway through the first tale. Additionally, the thirteen pages of backmatter — an interview and series of sketches — are darn entertaining, not to mention well worth reading.
“Captain America: White” #1 is a bit more geared to seasoned comic book readers over Marvel cinema fans, with Bucky much more a kid sidekick than competent colleague. Cap trains him but laments bringing him into battle, a decision that hangs over this comic. It is still a fun read and a must-have for readers who love Bucky fighting alongside Cap. “Captain America: White” #1 is definitely worth checking out.