|Thunderbolts #2 preview art by Steve Dillon|
By Tim Stevens
As requested, I have prepared readiness reports on those currently under consideration for the THUNDERBOLTS initiative per the orders of General Ross. Colonel Daniel Way and I performed the following evaluation of Corporal Eugene “Flash” Thompson, aka Venom.
Tactical Assessment by Daniel Way
“The alien symbiote attached to his body gives Venom an extreme advantage when it comes to recon and infiltration. He can look like anything or nothing. And in a blink, the symbiote can switch from defense to offense. Backed by Flash Thompson’s military training, expertise and resolve, Venom is formidable on either side of enemy lines.”
“Though hardly chaste, Venom is nevertheless prone to bouts of moral uncertainty. This could lead to hesitation during a critical moment.”
Psychological Evaluation by Tim Stevens
While this writer certainly feels that Thompson has proven time and again to be an excellent team player and one who places country above all else, it is important to note that he is not without possible difficulties.
For one, the subject has a personal and family history of substance abuse. Thompson’s father was an abusive alcoholic and Thompson himself has struggled with alcoholism, although he has heretofore been more self destructive than outwardly harmful to others.
This is especially problematic in light of the properties of the symbiote that gives him his abilities. All studies indicate that the alien creature attempts to bond to its hosts and that this bond creates a pattern of behavior that is not all together different than the profile of addiction. This has been the case in “hosts” without a prior history of substance abuse so for someone like Thompson, the chances for addiction must be considered even higher.
Additionally, Thompson has experienced two significant incidents of trauma as of late. While serving as in the United States Army, he lost both of his legs during a firefight with insurgents. He has been credited with saving his platoon and insists that he was simply doing his job. The subject denies any complications stemming from this event beyond the loss of his legs.
More recently, as Venom, the subject was targeted by a low level New York crime lord, the Crime Master, actually the brother of Betty Brant, Thompson’s then romantic partner. Crime Master’s machinations led to the deaths of people Thompson cared about and the degeneration of his relationship with Brant. Again, however, the subject insists he is not experiencing any lasting ramifications of these events.
Overall, this writer does recommend Thompson for Thunderbolts service, with reservations and a request Thompson continue to work with a therapist while serving.
The evaluations continue tomorrow with the Punisher, and you can order issues of THUNDERBOLTS now!