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Thunderbolts #3: Review

Oct 2022
Jim Zubkavich, Netho Diaz

Story Name:

Monkey business

Review & Comments

4.5 stars

Thunderbolts #3 Review by (October 29, 2022)
Cory Petit joins Ariana Maher on the lettering.

Blue Marvel 1st appeared in 2008's Adam: Legend Of The Blue Marvel mini-series but with a built-in backstory of previous superhero activity. He got involved with the 2013 Mighty Avengers led by Luke Cage and including Spectrum where he and Monica started their relationship. He and Spectrum were part of 2015's Ultimates in the post-Secret Wars universe. which also included America Chavez. He and Chavez also teamed up in the current Defenders: Beyond mini-series.

Spectrum was converted to a being of light during the Captain America & Mighty Avengers series in the pre-Secret Wars universe. This state lasted through the Ultimates. But she got reverted to a human body (still with her powers) during Avengers No Road Home.

Igor, Miklho and Peotor were the original Super-Apes but they were supposedly killed in flashback by the Nazi Steve Rogers in Captain America: Steve Rogers #4 during Civil War II. They must have got better. As far as I know Yaroslav is a totally new addition.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Thunderbolts #3 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This month's issue begins with Monica Rambeau (Spectrum) in bed with her lover Adam Brashear (Blue Marvel) in his seabed Kadesh Base HQ in the Pacific Ocean. She's still getting used to having a human body again and is now struggling with the commute to New York for the Thunderbolts. She uses her powers to switch to her uniform and borrows his jacket again (she's been wearing it in the previous issues). Before she goes he asks her to say "Hi" for him to their mutual friend America Chavez. He hopes that *she*'s recovered from their recent shared cosmic adventure (the Defenders: Beyond mini-series, not quite finished yet). Spectrum zooms off at lightspeed ...

... and lands in Central Park where Hawkeye (Clint Barton) is turning an outdoor meeting into an impromptu training session. Clint welcomes her with a pat on the shoulder. Power Man (Victor Alvarez) appears to be ignoring him but is actually reading up on the history of the place to bolster his chi power. America is a bit dismissive but Gutsen Glory thinks a good soldier should obey orders. (Persuasion and Eegro The Unbreakable aren't present.)

Hawkeye says they'll play a game. He slams an arrow on the ground which emits concealing smoke and then tells them the object is for them to tag him before he tags them. And a rain of blunt arrows heads towards Gutsen and Chavez. GG's instinct is to grab 1 but it emits a burst of light and sound and Clint says he's now tagged. America takes to the air to get away but more arrows tag *her*. Power Man dodges those aimed at him but 1 of them's a boomerang arrow which hits him in the back of the neck. Monica is confidant Clint won't get *her* but he says he already tagged her with an arrowhead when he greeted her.

PR Helen Astrantia turns up with Persuasion (Kara Killgrave) from a photo-shoot for KK's new line of perfume. Eegro is with them, and the small monster is wearing a specially-made suit. Helen objects to the classic Hawkeye mask Clint has added to his costume because she wants their faces exposed to inspire public trust. She runs down their schedule:- Power Man has an interview with Iron Men fitness mag. Clint is booked on J Jonah Jameson's podcast (which he never agreed to). But then she gets a call for the team to attend a problem elsewhere in the Park, but she gets America Chavez to transport them there via 1 of her star portals to make a dramatic entrance.

They arrive at the Park zoo which has been taken over by the Russian Super-Apes. They have broken free from their Red Ghost master and now demand freedom for all animals. A police team is there already and they intend to subdue the apes with tear gas. Spectrum thinks it's a good plan and the TBolts can apprehend them afterwards. But Hawkeye wants his team to get all the kudos and Persuasion offers to parlay in her rusty Russian.

She meets with Igor the baboon who shapeshifts to imitate her, but only as a distraction while Peotor the orangutan uses his magnetism to affect Gutsen Glory's somewhat metal body and also cause Hawkeye's trick arrows to attack Power Man. Igor punches Persuasion into a police car while Glory's weapons system launches grenades at Eegro, destroying his new suit. Chavez is in battle with Miklho the gorilla when her powers choose that moment to go on the fritz again and *she* gets thrown through a wall. Spectrum is met by a monkey named Yaroslav who absorbs her energy and directs it at Eegro. Eegro suggests using his so-far-unrevealed ultimate attack. Clint and Helen order him not to because it would kill many humans too. Power Man tackles the gorilla but the police launch their gas grenades. Apes and humans all start to retch. Eegro KO's the monkey with a finger-flick.

The Daily Bugle has a field day with the TBolts' incompetence. Helen tells Mayor Luke Cage that people still love Eegro who has signed over all merchandising rights to Thunderbolts Inc as long as he isn't sent back to Monster Island. Finance lawyer Harris Hutchley is finalising the contract but the proceeds should pay for damage the team does. But Cage is beginning to regret his idea of redeeming the Thunderbolts name.

Clint was going to debrief the team but Monica sent the others home. However Guts is still here too because she's not his CO. The other 2 get into an argument about Hawkeye's leadership 'skills'. Glory tells them they're both as bad as each other. Clint doesn't take charge effectively but Monica shouldn't disrespect her team leader. He says he took this job to finish off his tour of duty working with Avenger pros, but they disappoint him.

America and Victor are taking the subway home when she collapse on the floor.

In his apartment Clint calls his ex-wife Bobbi Morse (Mockingbird) for moral support.

Netho Diaz
Victor Olazaba
Java Tartaglia
Sean Izaakse (Cover Penciler)
Sean Izaakse (Cover Inker)
Nolan Woodard (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Ariana Maher.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Clint Barton)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. America
Ms. America

(America Chavez)

Plus: Blue Marvel (Adam Brashear), Eegro The Unbreakable (Eegro), Gutsen Glory, Harris Hutchley, Helen Astrantia, Persuasion, Power Man (Victor Alvarez), Spectrum (Monica Rambeau).

> Thunderbolts: Book info and issue index

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