New Thunderbolts #6
Quick Rating: Very Good
Title: City of Heroes?
The new Thunderbolts are New York’s only hope to be saved from Hydra!
Writer: Fabian Nicieza
Co-Plotter: Kurt Busiek
Pencils: Tom Grummett
Inks: Gary Erskine
Colors: Chris Sotomayor
Letters: Albert Deschesne
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Cover Art: Tom Grummett
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Hydra’s plans become clear as the terrorist army overruns a New York without Avengers to protect it. Although may of the second-string heroes come out of the woodwork, only the Thunderbolts have the inside knowledge to save the day – because Baron Strucker has been bankrolling them from the beginning.
Considering the nature of this title, I’m really rather surprised at how many of the ongoing subplots are resolved this issue. Granted, most of then are resolved in a fashion that leaves more questions, but a lot of them are resolutions that leave more questions. Nicieza manages to pack an incredible amount of story into what’s basically an all-action issue, but he doesn’t make it seem crammed or bloated. Throughout the battle, stories and ideas are ticked off one at a time, adding up to the final package. We get the truth about Speed Demon, about Joystick, and about Captain Marvel, and despite some of the complaints I really don’t have any problem with his new status quo, although I must admit I don’t quite grasp the reasoning behind it. (There’s something bizarrely Freudian going on there, and I really hope Nicieza is planning to give us more of an explanation later on.)
Some of the stuff, such as Songbird’s actions in this issue, aren’t that surprising, but at the same time they work for her and show how far the character has come. The same goes for Mach-IV, still stuck in his old Beetle armor, but still displaying the true hero he’s become.
Tom Grummet again does a solidly entertaining job with this issue. He’s got some of the most action to draw that I’ve ever seen in a single issue, not just a fight scene but a city-wide fight scene involving hundreds of enemy agents and cameos from a lot of heroes outside of the main cast. This is the sort of thing that you usually have to see in a big summer crossover. He also gets points for a knockout cover – imagine, a cover that actually invokes the events of the issue. I’m amazed that Marvel let this get to the printer.
This book wraps up a lot of things, but there’s still plenty out there to keep us occupied. I can’t wait to see where it’ll go next.