Holy Zombie Insurgents, Batman!!!
The Alpha squadron completes their latest mission just as Bravo team's called in for their first.
This is quite possibly my favorite cover to have graced this series.
Like last issue, the stories split between the regular bolts and the second squad. Last week I found this to be a bit distracting, but this week the transition happens a lot more smoothly. So much so that I can say that I genuinely enjoyed it.
I liked the idea of Satana joining the T-Bolts, but she really was a bit too much for me last issue. This go around she's a lot more understated and likeable. Hopefully Parker will continue to write her in this manner and not let her chew up the scenery like Tim Curry in drag. She proves her worth to the team early on and it seems she's going to be a nice fit.
The reason I read T-Bolts is because I love the idea of all of these strong personalities having to coexist without killing one another. There's some great interaction with Moonstone and Ghost that's a nice callback to the Ghost highlight issue.
I like Walker's design of Baron Gothenvald. It's like a mix of a Helghast commander and a Locust grunt. I was more than a little worried that they'd go the played out Nazi zombie route. The baron sics a creature on the T-Bolts called the Incarsicus which has the power to make one experience the greatest fears. Each of the T-Bolts living nightmares is very fitting. I feel I learned the most about Ghost from his.
I was a bit skeptical about some members of the B team, but now that I've seen them in action I'm warming up to them. Towards the end of the issue we're treated with a little preview of the two teams teaming up on a mission. Naturally the original T-Bolts don't take to kindly to the new kids on the block which makes what Moonstone does very appropriate and satisfying.
This week Walker splits art duties with Declan Shalvey. I'm not a fan of Shalvey's artwork, I find it underwhelming and uninteresting and a bit haphazard. It was well enough on the Man-Thing spotlight issue, but seeing it next to Walker's really highlights its flaws for me.
How has nobody died on Cage's watch? Seriously, how?! How's he even still leading, Affirmative Action? Between this title and New Avengers I've come to the conclusion that Luke Cage just isn't a leader. The last time I could genuinely see him as the leader of this team was with issue #144. I mean they may as well be following Johnny Cage out there, for what it's worth. I really feel like it would make a lot more sense for Songbird to lead the team with Mach V as co-captain. I know they had to find a way to sideline Juggs so that he can be used in Fear Itself, but that still doesn't justify the how. Luke flying off the handle on Juggy was really the wrong route to take. And makes him look inept as a leader.
Walker needs to find a new way to have the T-Bolts cut loose on enemies, because the "they're not really people" thing's getting a bit old. I get that the second mission is flowing out of the supernatural nature of the original T-Bolts', but too much of anything's a bad. Zombies...really, man, really? Come on, son!!!
Check it out, it's a good issue that does more right than it does wrong. If you're a fan of Bolts then you'll enjoy this issue. I was already prepared for things to get a bit wonky once I learned that T-Bolts would be a part of Fear Itself. Hopefully Parker's learned how to handle the situation a bit better since Shadowland. I'm holding out hope that once all the crossover duties are handled the tittle will get back to the things that made it such an excellent read in the beginning.