Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Thunderbolts #127

I can safely say that Thunderbolts is now Marvel's best title. It's been excellent ever since Ellis took over, and the transition from him to Gage and now to Diggle has been seamless. Diggle wraps up the previous era of the Bolts with Bullseye, Moonstone, and Venom trying to take out Songbird. Instead of going out like a punk as I feared last month, Songbird is capable, tough, and smart throughout this issue. She takes the best the villains can throw at her and won't give up. As she's stabbed, punched, and blown up as the issue goes on, I was realizing what a great character she is, and how perfect her eventual fate is. Swordsman shows up here and gets a nice little scene, he remains a "tweener" for the book, possibly good, possibly evil. This is our last issue with the old cast, as they move over to Dark Avengers, and what an exit. The good guys captured or on the run, and the villains gloating and plotting. Great stuff. Diggle's characters are spot on too, his Moonstone dialog was perfect, and he did a great job capturing Bullseye's murderous ways too as he complains about the nanochain "MacGuffin" that has kept him in line. What puts this book over the top is the great characterization in the high-stakes environment. Since these aren't A-list character, it really feels like anything can happen.

Roberto De La Torre's art is getting better. His action in particular is looking great, and the gloomy atmosphere in this comic is palpable. When Venom crashes into the Zeus to grab Songbird, and he's about to eat her, man, that was a well put together scene! This is a great comic, and I think once Diggle gets his own cast next issue, it may get even better.


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