Marvel Comics (November, 1998)
“Decisions” part 1: “Turning Point”
WRITER: Kurt Busiek
PENCILER: Mark Bagley
INKER: Jon Holdredge
COLORIST: Joe Rosas
LETTERING: Liz Agraphiotis
EDITOR: Tom Brevoort
Upset at being pushed around the Thunderbolts opt to go after the new Masters Of Evil. It’s not the way Jolt wanted it since they’re after revenge, not justice. The battle goes in the Thunderbolts’ favor until Moonstone, trying to reassert her authority, ends up distracting everyone and they’re defeated. They’re rescued by Dreadknight, claiming he wants to join them since he was forced into villainy by Doctor Doom. The Masters escape rather than being captured by SHIELD like the Thunderbolts set up. Later, deciding whether or not to add Dreadknight to the team is interrupted by MACH-1 questioning Moonstone’s leadership, but nobody else really wants the job. Then Dreadknight weighs in…or rather the guy pretending to be Dreadknight…Hawkeye!
What they got right: Hawkeye is an interesting addition to the story, as he was also a reformed villain, tricked into being a villain by a then bad Black Widow. Also the new Masters aren’t really interested in revenge so if they become a recurring threat it’s more to circumstance than them stalking our heroes.
What they got wrong: I’m kind of disappointed Dreadknight is a fake-out. I wonder what he would have brought to the team. A brief scene with Zemo and Techno really just sets up a Captain America crossover with this mysterious new Citizen V and outside of a history with this comic it feels pointless.
Recommendation: Still enjoying this series. Worth checking out.