Thunderbolts #15: Infinity Tie-In (Spoilers)


Thunderbolts #15The One Where There Is An Alien Invasion.

Thunderbolts: Infinity Part Two of Five

Writer: Charles Soule
Artist: Jefte Palo
Inker: Terry Pallot
Colors: Guru eFx
Letters: Joe Sabino
Cover Artist: Julian Tedesco
Editors: Jordan White & Nick Lowe
Editor-In-Chief: Axel Alonso

 

Our Team of Thunderbolts In New-York: Punisher (Frank Castle), Venom (Flash Thompson), Deadpool (Wade Wilson), and Elektra (Elektra Natchios)
Our Team of Thunderbolts In The Base: Red Hulk (Thunderbolt Ross), The Leader (Samuel Sterns), and Mercy (Mercy).

 

Arguing on the BrooklynI Bet No-One Will Even Notice Us: The issue opens with our New-York based Thunderbolts arguing about transportation in the back of a black van stuck in traffic. Deadpool wants to take the subway, but The Punisher is against it. Deadpool decides to leave and take the subway to a pizza place, planning to meet up with the others later.

Back at the submarine Headquarters, The Leader is taking a verbal beating from Red Hulk and as a result when he notices the forces of Thanos moving in, he refuses to warn the team. He does share the information with Mercy, who gets excited at the imminent death that will come at the hands of Thanos’ army.

On the subway, Deadpool is confused for Spider-Man by a little girl. The other Thunderbolts fail to beat news out of thugs on the location of the Paguro family and the team fight about what to do with the thugs. They happen to stumble across a family that the Paguro family wronged, who reveal their location. Before the Thunderbolts can do anything, Thanos’ forces land. Venom wants to help out in the battle, but The Punisher strong-arms him into staying focused on the mission. On the other side of town, the little girl who mistook Deadpool for Spider-Man is attacked and Deadpool abandons his mission for pizza to save her. At the same time, the sub HQ emerges from the water into New York, directly in front of one of the members of the Cull Obsidian, Super-Giant.

 

Continuing the jokeEveryone Usually Just Thinks I’m Spider-Man: Another solid issue of Thunderbolts from Charles Soule and Jefte Palo, though not quite as good as the first issue in this arc. It still has a strong balance between the characters, especially those in New York. There’s good development in the relationship between the Black Van Trio; Flash plays good cop, Frank plays bad cop and Elektra falls somewhere in the middle. Frank’s obsession with “the mission” is definitely not making him any friends in the Thunderbolts, but neither is Flash’s desire to do good and help out. I don’t really see things working out well for either of them; Flash could end up getting himself killed with those morals of his and Frank could end up facing more than just Elektra when the time comes. And while I wasn’t overly fond of the way Elektra was used here (seduction), it was nice to see her lead Flash away from the webbed up thugs so he thought they had taken the moral high ground, while Frank hung back to ‘clean up’.

The creative team also bring a strong sense of humor to the title. It’s especially funny to see Soule cut loose with Deadpool while the other characters are so damn gloomy. It was also nice to see Deadpool decide to be the hero of this issue; for all his wanting to do good Flash ends up in second place after Deadpool jumps into the fray to save the day. The art also remains cartoony and light-hearted though Palo can draw one badass looking Venom.

 

Venom's an idiotIf It’s Good Enough For The Devil: That being said, the art is also the weakest part of the issue. Venom’s helmet often looks like a gas mask, there are times the little girl looks like she’s being stabbed through the chest (even though that’s just how Palo depicts her clothing), and nearly all the pages are laid out the same way. Also, his seductive Elektra does not look attractive in the least (though I never found Elektra’s outfit all that provocative to begin with).

While we’re on the topic of weak, the narrative felt altogether too convenient. The disgraced Nobili family was introduced last issue to demonstrate just what type of family the Paguro is, which is not all Frank cranked them up to be apparently. He spent half an issue explaining how hard it is to track down these infamous Paguros and yet they randomly stumble across the Nobili family, who quickly departs the location of the Paguros. That was a groan worthy moment, why didn’t the Paguros just kill the Nobili family earlier? When you set-up the logic that it’s hard to track down this family, you stick by the logic it’s hard to find this family. Not just randomly have our Thunderbolts stumble across the one family who would betray them, who really should have been killed off.

I also would like to have seen Frank’s plan start to play out before Thanos crashed the show, but that’s not going to happen. This is apparently going to be a really important tie-in though because the Thunderbolts show up in Infinity proper, fighting against the Cull Obsidian (Thanos’ generals) in Earth’s defense. With some serious firepower in the forms of Rulk and Mercy, I think things are going to get very smashed next issue.

 

Infinity 3 referenceVerdict: Thunderbolts #15 is another good outing from a creative team that could do better. The art is a little off and the story has a couple groan inducing moments, but there is still some great banter and character interaction. The Infinity connection will kick into high gear next issue, where we’ll see our Thunderbolts fight against the forces of Thanos, not in defense of Earth but for their own selfish reasons.

Pros:

  • The Black Van Trio
  • Deadpool being the hero
  • Great running jokes
  • No Thunderbolt steals the show

 

Cons:

  • Doesn’t stick by it’s own logic
  • Art is wonky for most of the script
  • Don’t care for Elektra’s use here

 

B-

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