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Review: Peter Cannon Thunderbolt #1

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt #1

His level of genius is matched only by his heroics, and in humanity’s darkest hour, he’s the hero they need the most – alas, poor humanity.  Peter Cannon – the man known as Thunderbolt – is only too happy to leave civilization to face its end. Kieron Gillen teams up with powerhouse artist Caspar Wijngaard as he returns to the superhero genre with a dark, humorous and relentless love song to the genre.

Well, “Love Song” in a Leonard Cohen Love Song kind of way. Peter Cannon, Thunderbolt: saving a world he hates.

I assume that by clicking on this review, your primary question is whether you should read this book. I won’t beat around the bush; you should. Not because it’s really good (although it is) nor because the art is visceral (it is), but because it will take your expectations and knowledge of comic book tropes and laugh at them. And then, gloriously, it will honour them.

In Peter Cannon Thunderbolt #1 Kieron Gillen has written a really interesting comic that plays with the “Super Smart Man With All The Answers” trope wonderfully. If you’ve read Watchmen or are aware of how Batman plans for everything then you’re going to think you know how this ends (and you could be right, but you probably won’t be), but I won’t lie to you; this book caught me several times. Gillen brilliantly toys with your expectations and comic book knowledge to deliver a really fascinating and original story.

But don’t think that that if you have read, or aren’t aware of, the previously mentioned series or character that you’ll be lost. You won’t. There’s still a really good story here for you to enjoy.

Caspar Wijngaard and Mary Safro are a solid combination on art duties, and are a match for Gillen’s story. This book is visually dynamic, the darker tones matching the threat presented without ever obscuring the events depicted on page (and I’m saying that with a watermarked review copy – in print it’ll be so much better). Wijngaard’s grasp of emotion and body language here adds a level of depth to the story; Peter Cannon’s slightly stooped shoulders and his constant apathetic expression tells you as much about this man as any text will. It’s subtle and brilliant.

Much like the conclusion to the issue.

If you’re looking for something new to read that has a unique twist on the superhero story, then you can do a lot worse that Peter Cannon Thunderbolt #1. This book is easily my pick of the week, and has been added to my pull list going forward.

Story: Kieron Gillen Art: Caspar Wijngaard
Colourist: Mary Safro Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-lhaou

Story: 9.0 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.9 Recommendation: Buy

Dynamite provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Age of X-Man: Alpha

Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

It’s a short week of releases with the holiday and you can get every single issue for under $50! So, instead of picking which you should get, we’re doing something a little bit different with going over what they are and why you should check out each release!

Age of X-Man: Alpha #1 (Marvel) – This is the real lead up to the new various miniseries that’ll make up the Age of X-Man. It’s also our first look at this world where everyone is a mutant.

Fight Club 3 #1 (Dark Horse) – Chuck Palahniuk is back with his popular series. We’ve read the first issue and we’re scratching our head honestly but the art by Cameron Stewart is amazing.

Heroes in Crisis #5 (DC Comics) – Yes, the series is beyond controversial but we’d be lying if we said we weren’t excited to see where it’s going and what’s next.

James Brown: Black and Proud (IDW Publishing) – A graphic novel biography of the talented musician. A great way to learn about his life.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt #1 (Dynamite Entertainment) -Kieron Gillen takes on the character and that alone has us excited. In Kieron we trust.

Powers in Action #1 (Action Lab Entertainment) – Art Baltazar brings a whole new world in this all-ages superhero series.

Star Trek: Q Conflict #1 (IDW Publishing) – Anything with Q in Star Trek and we’re in.

WWE Forever #1 (BOOM! Studios) – Classic WWE and we’re all in for it.

Wyrd #1 (Dark Horse) – This sounds like a spin on the X-Files from Curt Pires and Antonio Fuso and we’re totally in for that combo.

X-Force #2 (Marvel) – The first issue was fantastic and we’re expecting no less from this second one. X-Force is back and awesome!

Preview: Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt Omnibus

Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt Omnibus

Steve Darnall, Alex Ross, Pete Morisi (w)
Jonathan Lau, Pete Morisi (a)
Alex Ross (c)
FC • 304 pages • $29.99 • Teen+

Peter Cannon is a world-famous author, an international celebrity, and the superhero known as Thunderbolt, acknowledged far and wide as the man who saved the world from destruction. Unfortunately, he has little interest in fame, even less interest in people, and the peace he has created is based on an illusion. Now, as old and new enemies — unaware of the secret he carries — plan to destroy his efforts, Peter Cannon must fight to keep the peace and preserve his own existence, while fending off deadly foes… and mysterious admirers. Collecting the complete ten-issue saga by comic superstar Alex Ross, co-writer Steve Darnall, and Jonathan Lau, plus the original script to issue #1, a complete cover gallery, 16 pages of sketches and designs by Alex Ross, and the rare origin story by Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt creator, Pete Morisi (featuring an introduction by Mark Waid)!

Layout 1

Preview: Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #10 (of 10)


Steve Darnall, Alex Ross (w)
Jonathan Lau (a)
Alex Ross, Jonathan Lau (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+

As Thunderbolt squares off against the Hooded One, he reflects on the dragon that he unleashed upon the world— the very dragon he must now stop from destroying it! Meanwhile, the General is prepared to stop any perceived threat by any means necessary, and Peter Cannon turns to new friends…and an old one.


Preview: Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #9 (of 10)


Steve Darnall, Alex Ross (w)
Jonathan Lau (a)
Alex Ross, Jonathan Lau (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+

In “Going Underground,” Thunderbolt is a man on the run. His secret revealed, he finds himself unsure of who or what to trust —including his own senses—and he must push his mind and body to the limit as he faces one of his (literally) oldest foes — the mind-bending Princess Evila!


Preview: Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #8 (of 10)


FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+
Steve Darnall, Alex Ross (w)
Jonathan Lau (a)
Alex Ross, Jonathan Lau (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!

Thunderbolt heads “Into Temptation,” as Peter Cannon returns to New York, where his secret is threatened, his relationship with Aida Leiva takes a strange turn, and he becomes a moving target — alongside the people out for his blood!


Preview – Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #7 (of 10)


FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+
Written by Steve Darnall & Alex Ross
Art by Jonathan Lau
Cover by Alex Ross, Stephen Segovia

In “Pyramid Schemes,” Peter Cannon is in Egypt, where he learns some disturbing facts about the missing Princess Ahmoset. Meanwhile, as Thunderbolt, his plans to summon the dragon once more bring him into contact with the explosive Sons of Adam!


Preview – Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #6


FC • 32 pages • $3.99 Teen+
Written by Steve Darnall & Alex Ross
Art by Jonathan Lau
Covers by Alex Ross, Stephen Segovia
Alex Ross “virgin art” retailer incentive cover

In “Darkness on the Edge of Town,” the Inventor ponders his assault on Manhattan, while Thunderbolt encounters the powerful and mysterious Adam and Eve—and we learn the tragic story of the man known as the Hooded One!


Preview – Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #4


32 pages FC  •  $3.99  •  Teen +
Written by Steve Darnall, Alex Ross 
Art by Jonathan Lau
Covers by Alex Ross (50%), Stephen Segovia (50%)
Fans, ask your retailer for these variant incentive covers!
• Ross “virgin art” cover retailer incentive
• Segovia black & white art cover retailer incentive

In “Magnificent Obsessions,” Peter Cannon—the hero known as Thunderbolt—returns to New York after defeating the murderous Master Tiger, only to find another unexpected threat awaiting him at the airport. Meanwhile, the General’s cabal unfolds their plan for destroying the dragon… with the help of an angry (if not quite mad) scientist!

PeterCannon04-Cov-Ross PeterCannon04-Cov-Segovia

Dynamite Previews – 11/21/12


32 pages FC • $3.99 • Mature

At last, Catelyn Stark and her prisoner, Tyrion Lannister, have reached the Eyrie, the lofty citadel of Catelyn’s sister, Lysa, the grieving widow of Jon Arryn. Because Lysa believes that the Lannisters were responsible for her husband’s death, Catelyn had thought to find an ally in this forbidding refuge. Instead the refuge seems more like a prison . . . and the “ally” a fearful and vindictive madwoman. Meanwhile, across the Narrow Sea, Daenerys Targaryen is also faced with a sibling’s madness—her brother, Viserys, impatient for the crown promised him by Khal Drogo, grows increasingly unable to hold his rage in check.


32 pages FC • $3.99 • Teen +
Covers by Alex Ross (25), Mike Mayhew (25%), Tim Bradstreet (25%), Francesco Francavilla (25%)
Fans, ask your retailer for these variant incentive covers!
• Francavilla “virgin art” cover retailer incentive
• Ross “sketch art”cover retailer incentive

Revolutionary Part 1 (of 4) – The Shadow traveled to Nepal to investigate a strange glitch in his mystic powers. He left with only partial answers. Now The Shadow and Miles Crofton, his pilot and sidekick, pause in Paris to take on some gun runners who are smuggling weapons bound for Spain. But a dark-eyed Spanish beauty named Esmeralda complicates matters when Cranston is unable to determine her intentions. The Shadow finds himself smack dab in the middle of the Spanish Civil War as he juggles the fate of a single solider who might help shape the future of humanity.


32 pages FC • $3.99 • Teen +
Written by Steve Darnall & Alex Ross
Art by Jonathan Lau
Covers by Alex Ross (25%), Jae Lee (25%), Ardian Syaf (25%), Stephen Segovia (25%)
Fans, ask your retailer for these variant incentive covers!
• Lee black & white art cover retailer incentive
• Ross “virgin art” cover retailer incentive

The plots thicken in “Discovering Japan,” as Thunderbolt meets his abductor—the deadly Master Tiger—and is forced to fight for his life. Meanwhile, men in high places are planning to destroy the peace that Peter Cannon has created… and an old enemy prepares to make his entrance.


32 pages FC • $3.99 • Teen +
Written by MIKE RAICHT

Barnabas Collins and his family are still reeling from their encounter with The Children and their sire. The brutal war has left those closest to Barnabas questioning his very nature. However, with a possible cure in his hands, will this 175 year old vampire finally be free of his vampiric curse? Or will remaining a vampire show once and for all that you don’t need to be human to prove you have a noble soul?


32 pages FC • $3.99 • Teen +
Covers by ALEX ROSS (main), ED TADEO (1:10)
Fans, ask your retailer for this variant incentive cover!
• ROSS “virgin art” cover retailer incentive

While the Secret of Bigfoot may be solved, a host of new questions emerge and the answers have Steve seeing red! With an unlikely ally by his side and a mysterious enemy in his crosshairs, Steve finds himself deep inside dangerous territory. But what he finds there may spell the end for the Bionic Man. Part 3 of The Secret of Bigfoot pits Steve against his strangest and most deadly adversary yet!

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