Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis—Volume 1: Faith in Monsters

thunderbolts by warren ellis volume 1 faith in monsters cover trade paperback tpb
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Art: 8/10

Fun characters, fun story

A bit derivative of Suicide Squad

Comic Info

Comic Name:  Thunderbolts (Volume 1)/Thunderbolts:  Desperate Measures/Civil War:  Choosing Sides/Civil War:  The Initiative

Publisher:  Marvel Comics

Writer:  Warren Ellis

Artist:  Mike Deodato Jr.

# of Issues:  9

Release Date:  2007

thunderbolts #111 cover faith in monsters jack flag

Thunderbolts (2) #111

Reprints Thunderbolts (1) #110-115, Thunderbolts:  Desperate Measures #1, Civil War:  Choosing Sides #1, and Civil War:  The Initiative #1 (April 2007-December 2007).  The Thunderbolts are done…but Norman Osborn has plans for a new team.  With villains forced under his control, the new Thunderbolts have been assembled to bring in superhumans refusing to register their powers…at any cost.  As Osborn continues to lose his grip on reality, a new team of Thunderbolts threatens to explode.

Written by Warren Ellis, Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis—Volume 1:  Faith in Monsters is a Marvel Comics superhero comic book series.  Following the Thunderbolts:  Guardian Protocols, the series features art by Mike Deodato Jr. and includes the series issues in addition to stand-alone stories Thunderbolts:  Desperate Measures #1 (September 2007), Civil War:  Choosing Sides #1 (December 2007), and Civil War:  The Initiative (April 2007).  The issues in the collection were also collected in Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis & Mike Deodato—Ultimate Collection.

I was on the boat of Thunderbolts from the start.  A secret society of villains plotting against the world as heroes was a compelling story…along with the idea of what being a hero does to a person mentally.  When Thunderbolts turned into a wrestling book, the series was a different direction…but the return to the classic storyline in New Thunderbolts and the Thunderbolts under Warren Ellis returned to some of the initial themes with a twist.

In this entry, the Thunderbolts are almost straight villains.  They aren’t plotting (as a whole), and they aren’t even really pretending.  Characters like Songbird and Radioactive Man are a bit on the fringe of being villains but are roped into the situation while Moonstone continues to manipulate with even new power under Osborn.  You get Bullseye who is a straight villain and other characters like Scorpion/Venom and Swordsman who have their own motivation.  It is closer to DC Comics’ Suicide Squad than the original Thunderbolts, but it still feels original.

thunderbolts #115 cover faith in monsters warren ellis songbird

Thunderbolts (2) #115

The series is held together under Norman Osborn who is going crazy.  I never personally liked the “Norman Osborn is a hero” storyline after Civil War, but it works here…though he is unhinged pretty quickly and it might have been better to have him slip slower.

This volume also benefits from some fun cameo heroes.  The Thunderbolts are tasked to take down two Captain America followers (from the much maligned “Fighting Chance” storyline) in Jack Flag and Americop.  The Steel Spider who has been around a while also gets a chance to battle, and I like that both Sepulchre and American Eagle get taken a bit more seriously.

Thunderbolts with nice art by Mike Deodato and a great cast is a fun book.  It takes the best aspects of Suicide Squad and mixes it with some of Marvel Comics’ style.  While it does change the themes of the series, Thunderbolts does continue to grow and develop by smartly including team members to keep the fan base while bringing in new blood.  Check it out!  Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis—Volume 1:  Faith in Monsters is followed by Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis—Volume 2:  Caged Angels.

Related Links:

Thunderbolts Classic—Volume 1

Thunderbolts Classic—Volume 2

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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