Thunderbolts: Purple Reign, Part Three: Living Lies

Atlas as Kong, from New Thunderbolts 12

"Purple Regn, Part Three: Living Lies" New Thunderbolts 12 (November 2005)
Reprinted in New Thunderbolts: Modern Marvels

Reader Rating: Above Average

Summary: It's ten days after Part One. The Purple Man has total control of NYC, and the T-Bolts are the only heroes still free to stop him. But first they need to figure out how the heck he's issuing voice commands over such a wide range.

Battling the Thunderbolts under Killgrave's control: Captain America, Iron Man, the New Warriors (Firestar, Justice, Namorita, Nova), Spider-Woman, the Vulture (!?), various Young Avengers and a new, female Doctor Spectrum. We are introduced to Scalpel, a surgeon with blades for fingers who has apparently been stitching up injured villains since the early days of Erik's career.

Continuity: Atlas returns from the "dead". Genis learns that Atlas is the one who sandbagged him during "One Step Forward", and that Erik was not under Killgrave's control at the time. Killgrave's escape from prison (after "Breakout") is explained as the space-twisting work of his mysterious "Master", who is revealed (to us, but not the 'Bolts) as Baron Zemo! Songbird insists that she has to run the team.

Only the flying New Warriors appear -- Speedball is not with the team. That makes sense, given that they're trying to King-Kong Atlas off the side of the Empire State Building.

During the following six weeks, MACH IV leaves the group, presumably to heal from his wounds and repair his armor, but also because none of the other T-Bolts have challenged Melissa's decision to take over. Melissa fires Blizzard from the team. In undocumented adventures, The New Thunderbolts deter threats from the U-Foes, Mr. Hyde and AIM. (See the recap page to "Ditch", Thunderbolts/Next).

Comments: A reasonably satisfying conclusion to NT's rather herky-jerky first year. Killgrave's narration is grating (if funny), but the Thunderbolts fight smart and tough. And extra credit for the return of Helmut, 'natch!

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This page was revised on March 8, 2009

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