Dark Reign

WWPhilly '09: Thunderbolts

Norman Osborn brings Luke Cage and Iron Fist into the fold this August in THUNDERBOLTS

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By Tim Stevens In charge or not, Norman Osborn remains a man with a quick temper and a penchant for doing bad, bad things. This August, writer Rick Remender and artist Mahmud Asrar will show fans how deep Osborn's dark side goes as he forces Luke Cage and Iron Fist to become his two newest pawns in the double-sized THUNDERBOLTS #136. Remender stays largely tight-lipped on how this "recruitment" comes to pass, but does drop some tantalizing hints: "Osborn sees an opportunity to bring in some heavy hitters for his little assassins club. [He] has turned up the heat on the Dark Reign, things are looking bad for the heroes of the [Marvel Universe] and now, as Osborn directs his focus on these two, the brunt of his scheming hits them right between the eyes." The duo can also blame, in part, writer Ed Brubaker for their fate. "When Rick and I started talking about which hero would fit best into this scenario, Danny Rand leaped to the top of our list," recalls THUNDERBOLTS editor Bill Rosemann. "As luck would have it, Ed Brubaker jumped in with, 'Aw, man, you gotta make it Power Man and Iron Fist!' [It] reminded us all just how much we love that classic tag team." As Remender tells it, Luke and Iron Fist represent but the first step in a long-term plan that could toss Osborn even further control of the Marvel Universe. "Osborn's plan [is] to create another branch, a new squad of conquered heroes-not-necessarily-for-hire," the writer explains. "Norman isn't just going to kill everyone who opposes him or it could potential cause him trouble. It would ruin his PR scheme and damage his shiny public image as the savior of humanity. In this special issue we look at a new solution he comes up with. If it works, he's going to have just about an unstoppable army." The exact nature of Osborn's machinations remains wrapped in secrecy to the existing members of the Thunderbolts. They do know though that they do not trust this sudden development and have no intention of simply taking it.

"They've been privy to Osborn's calculated deception and manipulation of them in the past so the team isn't going to find this new program much to their liking," Remender reveals. "As the Thunderbolts learn more about the true nature of Osborn's long-term plan they make plans of their own. This isn't a cast of servile milksops." While THUNDERBOLTS always lends itself to action, #136 brings the relationships between the characters front and center. [Luke and Danny's] friendship is in large part the theme for this issue," Remender divulges. "The current events and relationship between the Luke, Danny and Misty [Knight] play an important role in this tale." Despite this being a single issue assignment, T-bolts fans should not expect the story to be without ramifications. "Norman's plan is wide in scope," reminds Remender. "If he achieves his goal with Danny and Luke, how it plays out [is] going to be the fun part. How it will play into the future remains to be seen." "Rick and Ed [Brubaker] discussed the idea some more and quickly saw how that pairing would build upon Norman Osborn's actions in some other upcoming titles," adds Rosemann. As for how this might echo in THUNDERBOLTS going forward when Andy Diggle and Miguel Sepulveda return with #137, neither Rosemann nor Remender will say much. "I love the dynamic Andy has built within the new cast," compliments Remender. "You don't know who to trust, everyone's motives are suspect. That leads to good tension and keeps readers asking questions. Andy has so much fun stuff happening, I'd hate to show any part of the hand he is playing. It's terrific stuff." "Andy is building towards the big payoff of his phenomenal run on T-Bolts and Miguel is delivering the action in a way that's raising many eyebrows inside the halls of Marvel," echoes Rosemann.
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Comments

6 comments
BlackSamurai
BlackSamurai

When you say not super-hyped, was that by NA or Thunderbolts? I see seeds of goodness building up for Thunderbolts, but I get too much the feeling that NA is threading water because it just can't outright go after Osborne because of how long Dark Reign is planned to go on. Because of that, too much felt pointless about their continued existence as a third (fourth) Avengers title. It seems now, in retrospect, that NA should have become Dark Avengers, have them be the headliners, have the NA team running around in the background attempting to clog their works in the meantime as they also get guest time in the background of their team members solo titles, like CapA, Spidey, Wolverine and Iron Fist (well, had they made that plan). I tell myself it makes little sense supposing things after damage was done because few can see these things coming unless privy to the advanced scripts and planned direction, but NA was supposed to be bigger than it has been lately. I would endorse Blue Marvel being amongst this group for no other reason than that with Wonder Man not seeming like he's going to migrate over, this team is too outclassed with only Carol counting as a real powerhouse of late; but I don't think anyone would think to use him in such light, he's useful to place in a high controversy themed storyline. He possibly might not be brought back for many years.

FueLz
FueLz

[quote@sampson77 Maybe, I've always held out hope that the Blue Marvel might join the New Avengers. Maybe Dr. Strange or Brother Voodoo will join? Who knows?[/quote] the blue marvel? why? not that he's a bad character I just don't see where he would fit in or the reason he would join. Strange..been there done that and voodoo well, I don't think the NA need another sorcerer supreme. NA sucks right now so what they need is a new writer and a drastic line up change.

FueLz
FueLz

well this is going to be badass. the red eyes tell me that luke and rand are not under their own control. who hypnotized these guys? so is new avengers getting more members?

wyvern9
wyvern9

That last post was my hundreth, awsome!!! :thor: :devil: :cap: :cyclops: :hulk: :dead: :magneto: :lol: :lol: :lol: :grin: :grin: :grin: :razz: :!: :!: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

wyvern9
wyvern9

I Osborn can get Luke Cage and Iron Fist to be part of his squad of hitmen, is there anything he can't do. Dark Reign is going great.

spyderpunk828
spyderpunk828

WhaT! OMG This catches me full force, I read both NA and Iron Fist, I got to read this!!!