Earlier this month, Spider-Man 2099 made a triumphant return to Marvel after a bit of a hiatus. That story kicked off a series of one-shots that combine into a mini-event. The second issue in that series, Spider-Man 2099: Exodus #1, comes out this Wednesday, offering us insights into a new character. Well, a new character under the guise of a familiar name and hero.
As the preview shows, this issue features Winter Soldier 2099 giving us insights into her backstory, how she was made by the Russians, and the cool special powers she has that suit this dystopian futuristic world. I will admit I wanted more Spider-Man 2099 in this issue, but he does serve as the bookends to the tale. Thankfully, Orlando builds on the 2099 lore we know with logical character rebrands for the future as well as great techno-speak.
This issue serves as an origin for Winter Soldier 2099 as well as building toward the larger story. Both work well, thanks in part to a big superhero vs. supervillain showdown. If you’re familiar with Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Metabarons or his other iconic sci-fi work, this issue will feel right at home when it comes to future tech and ideas introduced here.
By the end of the issue, Winter Soldier 2099 feels like she gets a bit of closure while also establishing her personality well. It does take some patience and open-mindedness to care about the character since we barely know her, but it’s a solidly told tale. One other slight issue is a big win Winter Soldier 2099 has that feels rushed. Likely page count was an issue, but it’s hard to gather the importance when we smash cut to her defeating an enemy. Also if there was a bit more Spider-Man, or if he was a little more integral to the origin it might have been easier on casual fans to dive in, but it’s still cool sci-fi future stuff worth exploring.
Art by Dave Wachter with colors by Carlos Lopez suits the techno-organic design of Winter Soldier 2099. You see the skill when it comes to the cracks in Winter Soldier 2099’s face as if she’s got skin flaps instead of real skin. The organic nature of this character and the main villain is also expertly done. I’d wager the villain is the standout artistic element in the issue as he’s a mix of skin and metal. Environments look good as well, especially a “garden” Winter Soldier 2099 goes to. Lopez makes all the hues of trunks and water come to life.
After reading Spider-Man 2099: Exodus, you’re going to be intrigued by Winter Soldier 2099. She’s more complex than you might imagine and Orlando’s ability to bring in some cool-sounding techno-jargon along with a slick set of powers and abilities makes her a great addition to the universe.
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