DC’s Suicide Squad will fight Marvel’s Thunderbolts

In Suicide Squad # 11, Task Force X prepares to go up against DC’s version of Marvel’s Thunderbolts in what will surely be a brutal battle.

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Suicide Squad # 11, for sale now from DC Comics.

DC Universe has expanded their multiverse, with teams like Justice League Incarnate and Suicide Squad jumping between realities and confronting major threats, including characters who mimic those seen in Marvel Comics.

Suicide Squad # 11 (by Robbie Thompson, Dennis Hopeless, Eduardo Panscia, Julio Ferreira, Dexter Soy, Marcelo Maiolo and Dave Sharpe) sets Task Force X up to go against DC’s version of Marvel’s Thunderbolts, complete with a list that clearly refers to the classic anti-heroes.


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The front page of Suicide Squad # 11 shows Squad battling Earth-8's Retaliators.

The suicide squad has been sent across the DC Multiverse, ordered to break down numbers from other realities. Arriving at Earth-8, DC’s version of the Marvel Universe, confronts Squad Retaliators, which is this world’s answer to the Avengers. The superhero team is taken by surprise by the brutality of Task Force X. In particular, the Major Force ignores the prayers of its teammates and attacks with deadly intent, killing the War Machine-inspired Machinehead and Scarlet Witch stand-in, Purple Rain, who saves his teammates by teleporting them away. Emerging in their place is Lightning Strikes, which appears to be the Earth-8 equivalent of Thunderbolts.


Originally a team of villains posing as heroes, the Thunderbolts were eventually reinvented during the events of Marvel’s Civil war Interestingly, they embark on their version of the Suicide Squad: a group of villains and anti-heroes recruited by the government for dangerous missions. This has been the defacto approach to Thunderbolts ever since. Now the connection has come full circle, with a new team of Marvel-inspired killers set up to fight the squad.

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Dead Red is an off-color offshoot of Earth-8’s Brute, making him a clear stand-in for the Red Hulk. Oedipus’ name and coat of arms are direct references to Marvel’s Elektra. Thing-Man serves as a replacement for Man-Thing, while the openly clown Blood Puch is clearly meant to represent Deadpool. Leading the team is Thrill Kill, whose skull-adorned shirt is a clear allusion to Punisher (as well as DC’s Bloodsport, which has been a major figure in the current Suicide Squad series). It’s a fun extension of Earth-8’s general “Marvel Universe in the DC Universe” concept and provides the opportunity to pit the two similar teams against each other. Just as Justice Incarnate confronts the masters of Earth-8, it’s a fun way for DC’s heroes to come up with one-time variants of the classic Marvel heroes.


It is likely that Lightning Strikes will face similar fates as the rest of Earth-8’s grand masters as the Retaliators were decimated during the recent multiverse attacks. Still, this is a fun chance for the two franchises to fight each other in an unlimited fight.

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