Following a number of teasers indicating the return of the Thunderbolts, Marvel has announced that the series will return with a lineup of classic T'bolts cast members -- and a new leader. The series comes from writer Jim Zub and artist Jon Malin.
The series will feature classic Thunderbolts members Moonstone, the Fixer, Atlas, and MACH-V under the guidance of their new leader, the Winter Soldier. Seeds of the series will be planted during the upcoming "Avengers: Standoff" storyline. The series will still focus on the core "Thunderbolts" concept of villains striving to good, as artist Jon Malin told Marvel.
“Super villains looking for redemption I think is the ultimate strength and heart of Thunderbolts and sets it apart from everything out there,” says Malin. “These characters have done very bad things -- willingly. No one mind controlled them, they made choices of their own free will and that can never be fully taken back. That motivates me beyond belief to tell this story.”
Writer Jim Zub echoed the artist's sentiments: “Doing the right thing is different than being ‘good.’ We’ve assembled a potent mix of characters to explore that theme with big drama, big action, and unexpected twists along the way. The new team is stacked with powerful personalities and a mission that’s going to tear them up and get right to their core. I’m excited about putting them in tough spots and letting the sparks fly.”
The fresh start marks the series' return to most of its original lineup following a number of extensive overhauls; a mercenary lineup including characters like Elektra and the Punisher starred in the series in 2013 and Luke Cage tried to reform a group of super-criminals in a previous iteration from 2010. And prior to that, Norman Osborn used the group as the basis for his Dark Avengers squad back in 2007.