Thunderbolts #1 Review: Modern Spin on Classic Team Might Be Too Self Aware

In the most recent chapter of “comic Marvel doesn’t really know what to do with so it’s being reinvented again,” the Thunderbolts are again in print (recent off the affirmation of a film in 2024). After the occasions of Devil’s Reign, the sequence, historically composed of villains or anti-heroes, has been reclaimed by the powers that be as a bunch of do-gooders and with a spin so trendy that its self-awareness might result in it bringing itself on-line like Skynet. While principally new reader pleasant, the brand new Thunderbolts looks as if it is on one among two paths: making big swings that may alter Marvel continuity for ages or being brushed beneath the rug with out a second thought.

Writer Jim Zub pens the brand new sequence which places collectively the likes of Hawkeye, America Chavez, Power Man (Victor Alvarez), and two new characters: Persuasion (one of many Purple Man’s youngsters) and Gutsen Glory (a throwback to 90s extra in the entire greatest methods). After Mayor Fisk made the Thunderbolts into his personal personal police, newly elected NYC Mayor Luke Cage is reclaiming the identify along with his personal crew assembled by a fragile algorithm and the marketability of the heroes chosen. This is the place the sequence is maybe its most attention-grabbing, satirizing the trendy desperation by leisure firms (and let’s face it, virtually all others) in looking for pc generated options to issues they can not fairly outline. Thunderbolts #1 digging into this silliness delivers a few of its greatest materials, and makes it ripe for some enjoyable riffs sooner or later.

Since this can be a new sequence’ debut it primarily supplies a catch-up for brand spanking new readers and a status-quo verify for these returning to those characters, however because of this we do not truly get to know very a lot concerning the crew members which are making their debut within the Marvel Universe. Gutsen Glory looks as if it may very well be one thing enjoyable, and maybe a bigger commentary on reboot tradition with regard to algorithm abuse, however his presence as a novel tech-savy hero with a hidden secret, is about all we get. Even the advertising and marketing professionals which have put collectively this new Thunderbolts do not feel like they’ve an precise presence, they’re simply current to maneuver the items into place.

Sean Izaakse supplies inside paintings for the problem with colours by Java Tartaglia and the pair principally do good work. The bigger motion beats–pitting the brand new Thunderbolts in opposition to the Thunderbolts they’re replacing–offer room for meticulous element that flesh out all of those characters in enjoyable and recognizable methods. Some distinctive panel work additionally makes positive to introduce the brand new characters in ways in which make their arrival within the Marvel Universe considerably memorable.

A placing visible drag on the problem, whether or not or not it’s an inking drawback or a coloring one is unclear, is the contestant silhouettization of figures, gadgets, and components of character’s our bodies. Be it a gun on somebody’s again that’s shaded solely black for no clear motive, or an individual working off panel that’s only a blob, it occurs all through the comedian and is genuinely laborious to have a look at. One occasion of this, seemingly completed to painting shadows on Luke Cage’s head solely highlights his ear on the facet of his face to laughable impact; one other exhibits a personality with black hair standing in entrance of a shadowy wall with no distinction of the place their head ends and the wall begins.

Thunderbolts #1 is a fairly excessive swing for the fences by way of Marvel’s narrative. While lambasting company overlords (even its personal) the world over, the sequence’ curiosity in being a satire of recent enterprise comfort looks as if it may get misplaced after establishing the crew on this first subject. There are moments the place the brand new sequence exhibits visible promise, the motion beats particularly are enjoyable, however general there’s an inconsistent high quality to the world that typically makes this difficult to learn and interpret. Like almost each different try at rebooting Thunderbolts, there is a kernel of a good suggestion right here, but it surely appears to be the most recent in a lineage of “Marvel has no clear idea what they want the Thunderbolts to be, but it’s still time to try again.”

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Published by Marvel Comics

On August 31, 2022

Written by Jim Zub

Art by Sean Izaakse

Colors by Java Tartaglia


Letters by Joe Sabino

Cover by David Nakayama

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