Monday, 26 September 2016

Dark Reign: Deadpool/Thunderbolts Review (Daniel Way, Andy Diggle)


Set during Dark Reign after Secret Invasion, Deadpool knows something about Norman Osborn that he doesn’t want others to know so Norman sends the Thunderbolts out to kill Deadpool. But they don’t have to look far as he’s after Norman himself for owing him cash - time for a good old-fashioned supervillain smackdown! 

Though I enjoy all of Daniel Way’s Deadpool books, I didn’t love this crossover, partly because Way only writes half with Andy Diggle writing the other, less spectacular half, but partly because this is the second book now where Osborn’s been trying to kill Deadpool which is getting to be a bit boring. And the book with Bullseye as Hawkeye vs Deadpool was so much better too because Bullseye’s a great character and the Thunderbolts, particularly this Dark Reign lot, are crap and forgettable.

The Daniel Way/Paco Medina issues were fun and didn’t really need the Diggle Thunderbolts stuff except for padding to make this trade paperback length. We get a clear outline of what was going on in the first book, Secret Invasion, which was cryptic, especially if you hadn’t read the main event book like me, so that’s good. There’s also an amusing fantasy sequence with Osborn as the giant in Jack and the Beanstalk though there aren’t a great many funny scenes besides this. 

But the Thunderbolts characters are so dull (not to mention useless – they outnumber/out-power Deadpool and still fail!), their beef with Deadpool is pointless and goes nowhere, and the book is a bust as there’s nothing else except that to it. Also Bong Dazo’s art in the Thunderbolts issues looks very busy and cluttered compared to Paco Medina’s clean and clear panels in the Deadpool issues which gives the book an uneven visual aesthetic. 

Dark Reign: Deadpool/Thunderbolts has its moments but it’s easily skippable even if you’re a Daniel Way/Deadpool fan. It’s the comic book equivalent of an optional side quest in an RPG – for completists only!

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