They are all heroes who had, or have, their own individual titles: Red Hulk, Punisher, Deadpool, Elektra, and Venom. Formed by General Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross, his team of Thunderbolts is charged with “cutting out evil like a cancer.” Can this group of loners fall in line while sharing the same red and black color scheme?
Previously in Thunderbolts: General Thaddeus Ross, a.k.a. Red Hulk or Rulk, goes on a recruitment drive for his new team of superheroes. Traveling the globe, he enlists the help of Deadpool, the mercenary; Elektra, the assassin; and Venom, the soldier. Finally, Ross visits Frank Castle, a.k.a. Punisher, who is chained in a Brooklyn warehouse awaiting the arrival of several hundred mobsters. Frank agrees to join General Ross and the two anti-heroes slaughter their way out of captivity.
VERY CONFUSING PLOT
Issue 2 of Daniel Way’s Thunderbolts recounts their first mission as a team. General Ross and his band of anti-heroes travel to the island nation of Kata Jaya, where it is believed they are developing gamma-powered weaponry. The writer’s style of storytelling is very hard to follow. The scenes leap from modern times to past events. At the end, the reader should be able to piece everything together, but I could not. Some of the events at this time are confusing because they do not fit into the overall story. For example, the page where the story of Kata Jaya is not considered “newsworthy” has no reason for being there. It is completely unnecessary. I hope that the story will be more linear in future issues. However, even though it is hard to follow, the comic has its moments. Deadpool’s character shines on this Thunderbolts team, adding humor to an otherwise serious scenario. Still, General Ross’s plan seems a bit out there. With little to no planning, he intends to help rebels on Kata Jaya wipe out the island’s dictatorship. So far, all I read was the Thunderbolts killing a bunch of people for no particular reason. Overall, this series is a work in progress.
BLACK AND RED ALL OVER
Anyone who has ever read the Preacher series from Vertigo will recognize Steve Dillon’s artwork. It is very raw; it fits the overall tone of the story. The comic is not as gory as Preacher, but it has a fair amount of action and violence. There is also a lot of blood for a Marvel comic. I really like the head shot Deadpool takes when he and Elektra are captured. It reminds me of similar scenes in Preacher. The matching red and black costumes for the Thunderbolts was a nice touch. Flash Thompson, a.k.a. Venom, explains the red and black by saying allies wear the same colors to identify themselves in battle. I am pretty sure the Thunderbolts would be able to recognize one another since they are very distinguishable from their military-like enemy.
BOTTOM LINE: NEEDS IMPROVEMENT
Gathering this group of anti-heroes to fight as a unit was a great idea. Even though the artwork is solid, the story need better execution. The ending plot twist helps, and maybe the series will get better later. However, right now, it’s not that interesting.
DID YOU READ THIS ISSUE? RATE IT!