Writers: Kurt Busiek and Fabian Nicieza
Artists: Tom Grummett and Gary Erskine
Publisher: Marvel Comics
A pretty entertaining chapter in this miniseries, as the two teams form an alliance of sorts to deal with Moonstone who has gotten her hands on a power source that makes her one of the most dangerous people to ever threaten the Marvel Universe. Now the action in this issue is guilty of a kung-fu style of delivering its big fight, as instead of a co-ordinated attack the issue opts for a series of moments where the various characters tackle Moonstone in a series of solo efforts. However, this format does allow for a better look at the doubts that crossed the mind of Moonstone's team-mates, as how can one not enjoy the material leading up to the scene where Songbird decides to move against Karla. I also enjoyed the way that this issue acknowledges that Atlas is not the most stable of individuals, as if I've had one problem with the character during his time as a member of the Thunderbolts, it's that there's been relatively few moments where the book reminded readers that Erik was not only a villain, but a pretty ruthless one at that.
The issue also manages to offer up a series of fun little moments like the scene where Karla takes a moment to remind Blackheath that he used to be little better than a grade Z baddie. There's also a nice moment of internal doubt as we see Zemo makes a bid to reason with the raging Moonstone, and one is left to wonder if his ominous suggestions are simply an attempt to appease her, or do they reveal his true purpose. Plus the issue offers up a fun surprise for Thunderbolts fans as a former cast member returns to the fold, and the final page cliff-hanger is a wonderful capper to the issue.
Tom Grummett is a sound artist who knows how to deliver an action heavy issue like this one with a proper sense of excitement, as there are some great big impact visuals in this issue, from the scene where Atlas enters the fight, to the arrival of a surprise character who shows up to help save the day. The art also manages to convey the various emotions, from Atlas' near madness as he lashes out at Moonstone, to the grim determination that is etched on Hawkeye's face as he notches that final arrow. My only real complaint with the issue's art is that Songbird's sonic constructs looked a bit simplistic, and don't really look like they are making all that great of an impact on Moonstone.
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