See all reviews of Thunderbolts (2016) (8)

In the deepest, darkest, Get Smart-openingest recesses of a secret S.H.I.E.L.D. facility, Director-under-investigation Maria Hill grills the Winter Soldier on the whereabouts of Kobik, the sentient Cosmic Cube. In Thunderbolts #7, Bucky’s clean-up crew plot to bust out their beloved(?) leader. Is it good?

Thunderbolts #7 (Marvel Comics)

The Fixer can access S.H.I.E.L.D. intel anytime he wants, but somehow waits until NOW to do so! And the team finally accesses the former S.H.I.E.L.D. asset and founding Thunderbolt, Songbird! Just when she thinks she’s out, a botched rescue attempt pulls her back in ….

Meanwhile, in the impenetrable bunker, Bucky gets a visit from his only friend–or so he thinks. Protip: When a grinning man wrapped in an American flag says “trust me,” maybe don’t.

Is It Good?

The interplay of characters in Thunderbolts #7 is maybe the best it’s been all series, and where the main cast sounded interchangeable in early issues, each individual finally feels distinct, even if they’re not exactly as you remembered them in the ’90s. Maria Hill, on the other hand, is spot-on from the word go, so huge props to writer Jim Zub there.

This book still feels largely nostalgia-driven, but in more positive ways than before. The fun, over-the-top descriptions in the beginning invoke Silver Age wordiness and Bronze Age snark at their best. The unfolding drama between teammates and associates is very true to past iterations of Thunderbolts, too.

Helping to move things forward a bit is artist Sean Izaakse who, in his second issue of Thunderbolts, utilizes facial expressions and body language much more effectively than in the “ode to McFarlane” style of previous penciller, Jon Malin. Colorist Matt Yackey stays on and capably provides continuity through the run.

Thunderbolts #7 is possibly the best issue so far of a series that began slow and is only now harnessing its momentum. One can only imagine what could have been with a more sure-footed Zub and Izaakse’s art from the start. At least the ship is finally moving in the right direction.

Thunderbolts #7 Review
Sean Izaakse's art is more evocativeGood character interplay
Continued slow burn may be a turn-off to some readers
7Good
Reader Rating 3 Votes
6.5