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  1. #1

    Default Thunderbolts #7 *Spoilers*

    Alright folks, this is the first issue with Noto taking on art duties. Before I start the review, I just wanted to say that Noto does indeed make the book feel different, and in many ways better. He illustrates some scenes that I just don't think Dillon would be able to do nearly as effectively.

    In this issue, we start getting a hint of the CIA picking up on some activity. I'll address that bit last, as it is kind of intertwined in the story.

    For our purposes, we pick up in the sub that the Thunderbolts commandeered last issue. We learn that everyone is on edge about something. Rulk is staying in his Rulk form, Deadpool is still gushing over Elektra, the Leader is trying to use his mind, etc. We learn a bit of why some people are so on edge as we cut to the previous night, where the other Thunderbolts discuss mutiny in the form of attacking Ross in his sleep, and forcing him to tell them everything that's going on. Elektra asks the obvious, which would be: Why attack a Hulk in a submarine in deep waters? Deadpool thinks that Ross is so tied to the mission that he wouldn't dare do damage to the sub as that would void the mission. Personally, I think Deadpool is overestimating how much Rulk value's their lives...

    Anyway, eventually everyone apparently agrees with Deadpool for some insane reason, and go to attack Ross. Ross obviously expected this, as the next panel shows us all the Thunderbolts defeated in one room. This is the one sore spot of the book, as it demonstrates a recurring problem I'd hoped would be rectified with Noto on art: We aren't really shown any interesting action. How cool would it have been to show Rulk dealing wit his team of mutineers?

    Ross obviously didn't kill his team, and he is now explaining that he is aware of what was on the transport from Kata Jaya. Basically, there is the potential for a shitload of gamma bombs to be distributed, each with the capability of causing ridiculous amounts of damage. This is what the team needs to stop. Ross tells them that there are three brokers they need to be worried about.

    The next day (where the issue initially starts), Leader has a bit of a brain storm, and realizes that what their looking for - at least for now - is not a bomb, but a gamma powered battery. Ross asks what the battery could be for, and we cut to the three brokers Ross was speaking of, tied and on their knees. There is someone off panel talking to them, basically saying that because they are essentially leaders in their fields, the person off-panel is offering them an opportunity to be its spokesperson. It says that the leaders of the organizations they work for will have two choices: Submission, or death. With that last sentence, the panel pulls back and we see about a dozen Red Dynamo machines, each with what looks like a gamma source powering them. Dun-dun-DUNN!

    Alright, now to address the CIA portion. This part is slightly confusing, if only because it's not initially clear if they are looking into an issue caused by the Thunderbolts, or the events that lead up to the Red Dynamo/Broker conversation - or even one of the organizations not choosing submission (this is what I am leaning towards). At any rate, the CIA has become aware of an event in Talas in which a suspected terror cell has been neutralized. While this cell wasn't high up on the CIA's priority list, after examining the who's who of the dead they determine that these are people that they would have definitely been interested in. One of the CIA folk is placing a call to someone explaining this, basically telling them that the CIA wasn't responsible, but wanted to know if the person they are speaking to was. The person says no, the CIA director asks if he'd be willing to take the credit if it became necessary. We then cut to the screen the director is looking at, and we see Captain America's shield with him asking if it looks like he's carrying a broom, and we cut to a kind of hilarious screen of the Uncanny Avengers battling gorilla cyborgs being ridden by AIM agents, and Cap telling the CIA to "clean up your own mess".

    Later, the CIA discovers that gamma radiation was present at the site of the attack, and two of the lackeys basically decide that their report will read that due to the gamma radiation, it is apparent that the terrorist cell annihilated itself with the gamma radiation, though they express worry that a weapon they didn't know anyone had has been put into play.

    Whew, ok, I think that's all. Overall, I do think this was a much stronger opening issue for an arc than what we've already gotten. The story seems to be going somewhere, with the CIA obviously aware of something (we all know they aren't going to stop looking), and this issue also sets the stage for at least some variation of the Avengers becoming aware of what is happening and the Thunderbolt's involvement. I am thinking it'll be the third arc before we see that confrontation, though.

  2. #2
    I'm a male DebkoX's Avatar
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    So the teams now at odds amongst themselves?
    “The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can't achieve it.”

  3. #3

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    I'd say they are all primarily still distrusting of Ross (probably Elektra and Venom more than anyone), and then Deadpool hates the Punisher. So far most of them also are dismissive towards the Leader, but there's not much shown animosity.

    Part of this arc though is apparently supposed to be them tearing each other apart, so expect current fissures to grow and new ones to start.

  4. #4
    Senior Member cc008's Avatar
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    Going to pick it up now... be back in a jiffy!

  5. #5
    I'm a male DebkoX's Avatar
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    Ah, I see now.
    “The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can't achieve it.”

  6. #6
    Junior Member Bionder's Avatar
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    This arc is a good improvement comparing to the first one but Way still skipping some action parts (i'm talking about the fight between the team and Rulk). He could give us at least one page with 4 or 5 panels and this issue could be very good. Great art by Phil Noto, he brings some fresh air to this comic.

  7. #7
    i need drink scouse mouse's Avatar
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    This was a huge improvement over some of the previous issues! Noto's art is stunning and really does elevate Way's script; I don't really want to bash Dillon but I seriously hope he never comes back. Noto needs to be the main penciller of the book from here on out. I enjoyed the character moments, Way got Elektra spot on and I like the relationship between her and Punisher. This isn't a lovey dovey romance it SEX!
    ELEKTRA*LADY MASTERMIND*DAREDEVIL*ARIEL

  8. #8
    Senior Member cc008's Avatar
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    Good (Phil Noto's art), not great (skipped action sequences and the bouncing around). I would prefer it if Way could just tell a linear story with outh going from one morning to the night before to whenever. You forgot the timeline if it's not labeled after a while and it becomes a chore to stay on track. Definitely the best issue so far though. Deadpool's reasoning for why it's ok to confront Ross is logical. Ross may not value the other member's lives but he obviously values the missions and his own success. Rulk stepping on Wade's head while Wade is raising a finger as if to try and make a rebuttle was pretty funny.

  9. #9

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    Yeah, it definitely has been the best issue so far.

    And I agree...you can tell Way is in love with this fractured time telling device, but I really wish he'd stop it! It would be one thing if it worked well, but it just doesn't. I actually liked all the characterization this issue, none of them felt OOC personally.

    I do wish they'd announce the artist for the next arc though. I like Dillon, but ultimately I think he's a huge drag on the book.

  10. #10
    I'm a male DebkoX's Avatar
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    A new artist would propel my interest.
    “The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can't achieve it.”

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by DebkoX View Post
    A new artist would propel my interest.
    Well, that is what we got with this issue. Or do you mean someone besides Noto?

  12. #12
    Senior Member Captain Craig's Avatar
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    This book should've clearly started with Noto on the artwork. The first few issues would still have been as crappy a read but I could've stomached it more.
    Is this the start to a new arc or still part of the opening act? It felt like a continuation from last issue which felt to me like the extreme decompression of Way's story telling is still in effect.
    Almost enough to get me to pick the book back up but passed.

    I just want a good Punisher solo title. I'm still soured by the lame start this book had.
    "Freedom is the Right of ALL Sentient Beings" - Optimus Prime
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  13. #13
    Senior Member cc008's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Craig View Post
    This book should've clearly started with Noto on the artwork. The first few issues would still have been as crappy a read but I could've stomached it more.
    Is this the start to a new arc or still part of the opening act? It felt like a continuation from last issue which felt to me like the extreme decompression of Way's story telling is still in effect.
    Almost enough to get me to pick the book back up but passed.

    I just want a good Punisher solo title. I'm still soured by the lame start this book had.
    Its the start of the second arc but its connected to the first arc. What happened at the end of last issue is why the team is starting this next part of the mission.

    As for the next artist, Tsai, we should find out in the next solicitation. That's my guess.

  14. #14

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    It's the start of a new arc, but the overall story is still carried over from the end of the first arc.

    Yeah...the terribad start and art that put most people off wasn't the best way to start this book.

  15. #15
    BUY LOKI: AGENT OF ASGARD Kieran_Frost's Avatar
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    WOW! What a difference an artist makes! For anyone who ever doubted how important an artist can be to a comic -- this comic went from being pretty damn bad to actually really enjoyable and interesting. So many moments had so much more subtlety under Noto, like Elektra's conversation with Wade (loved her making tea, Dillon would probably have had her killed bugs and scowling). I'm sad Mercy isn't with them in the submarine, but I'm excited for her return. Still not desperately interested in the actual plot, but with such a fun cast it's easy to overlook and focus on their interactions and relationships (it's so much easier to ENJOY them this issue, now the artist has changed). A few moments were still a little hard to follow (I have NO IDEA what those guys in suits were talking about or how they were linked to the story). Overall, an enjoyable issue (though a little too "Red Hulk is awesome" -- didn't love the whole team being easily taken down by him). Am I the only one really find the Leader quite enjoyable now he's quasi-pathetic?
    ~ rating: 3 out of 5 [grade: B]
    Last edited by Kieran_Frost; 03-27-2013 at 04:12 PM.
    "I don't know how to please you Lord, but I think the fact I try to please you, pleases you."

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