Marvel villains hit the Met Gala red carpet in Devil's Reign - Villains for Hire #1 preview

Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire #1 excerpt
Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire #1 excerpt (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

If you thought Kingpin's return in Disney Plus' Hawkeye streaming series was surprising, you won't believe what he's doing in comics. Longtime crime boss Wilson Fisk has managed to become mayor of New York City, and is now pushing to ban superheroes ahead of a US presidential run as part of the current Devil's Reign crossover event.

Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire #1 cover (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

And to help enact Kingpin's new laws, he has recruited a new group of Thunderbolts - Marvel's Suicide Squad-esque team of villains fighting for 'good' in name only. Their story begins January 19 in the three-issue series Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire.

Kingpin's Thunderbolts are Rhino, Whiplash, Electro, Agony, and US Agent - NYC's official superhero squad whose mission is to bring law to the Big Apple - Kingpin's law.

Check out this preview of Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire #1 by writer Clay McLeod Chapman and penciller Manuel Garcia:

The recent (and upcoming) Hellfire Gala was inspired by the real-life Met Gala in New York, and that stunning fashion event is making its way into Marvel Comics with Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire #1. My question for you is how do these villains' costumes look compared to the memorable ones from the Met Gala?

Although Thunderbolts' name isn't in the title of the book, Marvel has made it clear in the marketing - and the preview - that these are in fact the publisher's new version of the Thunderbolts. But what you may not notice is that the title 'Villains For Hire' refers back to an older Marvel team as well - the Heroes for Hire. In 2011, there was a short-lived Heroes for Hire team called Villains for Hire.

Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire #1 (of 3) goes on sale on January 19. A collection of all three Devil's Reign: Villains for Hire issues is expected on June 7.

The original Thunderbolts team made a big splash with perhaps the greatest narrative trick Marvel ever pulled. 

Chris Arrant

Chris Arrant covered comic book news for Newsarama from 2003 to 2022 (and as editor/senior editor from 2015 to 2022) and has also written for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel Entertainment, TOKYOPOP, AdHouse Books, Cartoon Brew, Bleeding Cool, Comic Shop News, and CBR. He is the author of the book Modern: Masters Cliff Chiang, co-authored Art of Spider-Man Classic, and contributed to Dark Horse/Bedside Press' anthology Pros and (Comic) Cons. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. Chris is a member of the American Library Association's Graphic Novel & Comics Round Table. (He/him)