Out in December, Marvel today called round to talk about Daniel Way and Steve Dillon’s Thunderbolts relaunch. Featuring Red Hulk as team leader, the book sees a ragtag bunch of mercs and assassins teaming together – uneasily – for black-ops work. Among the cast will be Punisher, Venom, Deadpool and Elektra.

Speaking about the book, Way emphasised that General ‘Thunderbolt’ Ross was very much the centre of the series, with a new mission statement:

Long ago, Ross was not only aware, but partially complicit in some under the table dealings by the U.S. government. This is kind of where the story begins. He was an old man, and he was almost done with his life, and he was in that mode of coming to a rest, and then he became Red Hulk, and his future is essentially wide open.

Following on from similarly-themed titles Uncanny X-Force and Secret Avengers, this will be a book where no mercy is offered. The cast are going to assassinate their way through the enemies, with no compromises. The main plans seem to be for Red Hulk/Ross and Punisher at the moment, with Venom taking on the role as the moral centre for the team, Deadpool showing why he’s so dangerous, and Elektra…. not really doing anything, really. She’s going to be the mysterious quiet one, and Way doesn’t seem to have any specific plans for her as of yet.

Yes, it is rather strange for Punisher to be on a team like this, especially given his usual tendency to shoot other villains on the spot. Here’s the preview, in which the creative team lay out their case for his inclusion:


  1. I was just thinking how we didn’t have enough black ops superhero teams out there. I mean, with Secret Avengers and soon two different X-Force teams, it’s a wide open field.

  2. I’m sure we’ll the inter-title crossover as all four teams come into conflict over who actually gets to wipe out a particular target.

  3. Kind of wish Ennis was writing this. With Dillon’s art it would feel like a continuation of the Marvel Knights Punisher/Welcome Back Frank storyline… I miss Detective Soap.

  4. I also love Dillon’s work, I’ll check out the first issue at least…but I really can’t stand Red Hulk or Deadpool. :-(

  5. Count me in as another willing to try this because of Dillon’s art. Not a big fan of Way’s work — but Dillon on the Punisher? Sold.

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