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Ultimate Marvel


The NZA
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After filing for bankrupcy, losin out on much of the massive commercial sucess of the X-Men flick, and numerous other shit moves, Marvel tried out a new line called "Marvel Knights", a darker corner with lesser-known characters & good writing and art.

It took off....Kevin Smith, Quesada & Jimmy Palmiotti's stint on Daredevil was the best the book'd seen since Frank Miller, hands down.

The Inhumans, by Paul Jenkins (Origin) and Jae Lee (i forget what) was also a huge sucess; took an Eisener award i think. Books like Black Panther rose to the top 10 sales charts, a spot usually reserved for X-books. Sure, Moon Kinght and the first go at Punisher were weak, but later efforts on the latter brought Garth Ennis to the fold.

Joe Quesada is assigned CEO of Marvel, who's been financially in the red for years. His task: get them in the black (breakin even, more or less). Takin Marvel Knights one step further, Quesada brings the hottest writers & artists he can get to bring about the Ultimate line of books, a "Marvel Knights" for the popular characters that no one's readin, really. One of the main ideas? Respect the characters' origins, but bring em up to date, and fuck continuity. "But this clashes with what Stan Lee said in issue # 37!"...fuck it, if its a good story, go with it.

So dialogue master Brian Micheal Bendis Powers, Jinx[/b])ends up on their first book, [/b]Ultimate Spider-Man[/b], with my still-favorite spidey artist, Mark Bagley - ill show some of his stuff below.

The book gets mentions on MTV's Total Request Live, NY Times, and various other spots. It's massive popularity causes its first issue to go upwards of $200, and that's in its first year of printing - a figure unheard of in the current state of comics.

Not without reason, either - the book reads so naturally, its on issue 21 and spidey's fought maybe 3 people...the best part? You wont even fuckin notice. That's how solid the supporting cast/characterization is.

Mark Milar (i believe he worked on Authority after Warren Ellis?) takes on Ultiamte X-Men with Adam Kubert, my favorite Wolverine artist. While takin some leaps with the characters that initally upset a few - includin our resident artisticcartoon - the book's come around after its first year, and I can honestly say the last 2 issues have been some of the most interestin X-stuff ive read in years. This one seems to get better each issue.

Ultimate Team-Up, tho comin to a close soon (so Bendis has time for next fall's MTV animated Ultimate Spider-Man series, cant wait), is one of the best team-up books ive seen since Marvel Comics Presents had The Maxx & Epicurus's Sam Keith on it. The book can range from great storylines like a new, Sin City take on the Punisher to a giant parody of the Marvel Universe. It will be missed.

Finally, only 2 issues out so far, The Ultimates is the new line of Avengers books, and is lookin great thus far: issue #1 had Captain America WWII scenes that felt like readin "Saving Private Ryan" at times. When asked why he didnt call it "Ultimate Avengers", Milar replied "Its been 30 years, i dont know what theyre avenging." Cant name the artist off the top o' my head, but he's good so far anyway. Next issue oughta be the new Thor, should be fun.

The next in line is lookin to be an Ultimate Fantastic Four book, and while i dont think anyone could get me to read the comic equivalent of a superhero "Seventh Heaven" again, there's rumors of either Alan Moore (Watchmen, nuff said) or Grant Morrisson (New X-Men, JLA) writing it, so if its an even decent artist, ill give it a go - point being, thus far, the Ultimate universe (yeah i know, another cheezy adjective from the marketin scum, what can ya do) has done little wrong, and made formerly great books badass again.

 

Ultimate Wolverine - Adam Kubert, #16

Ultimate%20Wolvy.jpg

 

Ultimate Spidey - Mark Bagley, # 6

Ultimate%20Spidey.jpg

 

Ultimate Thor - Uh, hold on...Bryan Hitch, # 3 i think.

Ultimate%20Thor.jpg

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Fair enough, im spendin too much on em a month over here as well, but no regrets: at least things're good lately.

For those lookin to catch up later down the road tho, keep in mind that while Marvel is not takin back orders (meaning, if last month's issue sells out everywhere in miami, youre gonna need to go to Ebay, as comic vendors cant back order anymore in an attempt to raise the value of Marvel's books), Joe Quesada made up for this by ensuring the public that storylines which sell well will see Trade Paperbacks within a few month's time.  Usually cheaper than the actual issues themselves, trades can often feature sketchwork & other such extras.  Actually, that thought's just spawned another poll...

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Got the first two issues of The Ultimates, looks good. The first issue was a bit of a fast read but the war scenes were great. #2 kicked ass, loadsa shit happening, coming together well. Can't wait to see Thor in it, just from what I read before the series came out, something like 'He may be the direct descendent of a thunder-god or just a lunatic with a big hammer!', and they've got Tony Stark as an alco too! Gonna keep that one up!

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"Tony...its 9AM."

*winks* "...not in Moscow." :D

Yeah, tell me Hitch's art in part 1 didnt kinda make you wish there was another regular war book on the market? That shit was great, swear to god i thought i was lookin at Saving Private Ryan again at one point.

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  • 3 years later...

New con updates on Ultimate universe - follow the link for sketches!

 

Marvel Comics just wrapped up its Ultimate Universe: The Write Stuff panel at SDCC.

 

In addition to a Q&A with Ultimate X-Men writer Brian K. Vaughan and Ultimate Iron Man writer Orson Scott Card, the publisher also announced artist Brandon Peterson as the penciler for the third part of Warren Ellis’ Ultimate Trilogy, Ultimate Extinction, and provided a slide show of images from upcoming Ultimate titles.

 

Here’s a look at some of those images, including Peterson’s first Ultimate Extinction image.

 

Our friends at CBR were there for the full play-by-play and here's their full report.

 

ULTFF022_cov.jpg

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  • 4 weeks later...

Y'know, I was re-reading this thread. It's funny that you mentioned Saving Private Ryan after reading Ultimates #1 because I thought the same thing. So much so that I looked back over that scene and realized that it's obvious Hitch used it as reference. So much so that a couple panels are literal copies of scenes from the movie (and I'm fairly certain I saw a few panels lifted out of Band of Brothers during the scene in the plane).

 

ultimate1.jpg

ultimate2.jpg

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here

 

C.B. Cebulski, standing in for Joe Quesada at the “Cup ‘O Joe” panel seemed to confirm that Jeph Loeb and Joe Madureria are the new team on the recently announced Ultimates v3. Cebulski was asked “What are Jeph/Joe doing?” and answered “See Wizard in four days”.

 

He was then asked “Who’s the next team on Ultimates?” and answered “See Wizard in four days,” and then added “I think you guys can put two and two together.”

 

The next Wizard will also have David Finch’s first piece of Moon Knight art. Someone actually asked (seriously) if Wolverine would be making an appearance, a question that seemed to stun Finch for a minute.

 

The artist of the upcoming second Ultimate Iron Man mini-series written by Orson Scott Card will be named at WizardWorld: Boston.

 

Further clarification of the “King” announcement will be made in the mainstream press in 2006, and will see this person working on an ongoing series of mini-series later that year.

 

The writer of the Leinil Yu-illustrated Ultimate Hulk vs. Wolverine mini-series is slated to be announced within the next two weeks, presumably in the mainstream media.

 

So, we'll (possibly) know Ultimates volume 3 lineup soon...?

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No problem. This month's "Marvel Previews" basically showed that in the regular Marvel U, everything's gonna be House of M/Desolation (fallout) afterwards, well into '06, so you gotta look around for Ultimate news.

 

Man, Ultimate Secret's not really movin lately, huh?

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  • 5 weeks later...

Big Ultimate news here: http://www.newsarama.com/forums/showthread...?threadid=44783

 

Vision_color.jpg

 

“MARVEL GOES FOR THE GOLD, WITH NEW COVER TREATMENT ON BLOCKBUSTING ‘ULTIMATE’ LINE”

 

Marvel Entertainment’s Ultimate line of comics has proven to be the “Gold Standard” in all areas of its production: characters, stories, art, writing, and sales. Now, the House of Ideas is determined to go the ultimate distance by adding a gold color treatment to the signature cover borders of key Ultimate books.

 

“This unique signature look to represent the “Gold Standard” will allow fans to quickly identify new number 1’s and the beginnings of story arcs in the Ultimate line” says Marvel Publisher Dan Buckley. “The next twelve months will be like no other in the Ultimate world and we don’t want our loyal readers to miss a thing”.

 

The new look of the Ultimate books will be timed to coincide with the special ULTIMATE VISION backup story produced by writer Mark Millar and artist John Romita JR.. This story is a prelude to the ULTIMATE EXTINCTION limited series which concludes the Gah Lak Tus Trilogy. The Ultimate Vision backup will have six connected parts of four pages each and will appear in the following titles. (There are no current plans to make the Ultimate Vision backup story available in trade)

 

NOVEMBER 2005

1. ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #86

2. ULTIMATE X-MEN #65

3. ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR #25

 

DECEMBER 2005

4. ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #87

5. ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #88

6. ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR #26

 

The coming year is bright with Marvel’s plan for the Ultimate line:

 

* ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN continues with Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley, bringing us new stories like “Deadpool” in March 06 and “Clone Saga” in September 06 (coinciding with issue #100). Issue #104 will also bring a milestone: Bendis and Bagley break Stan Lee’s and Jack Kirby’s FANTASTIC FOUR record for consecutive issues of a Marvel comic.

 

* ULTIMATE X-MEN’s new scribe Robert Kirkman kicks off a new story, “Date Night”, in January 06, with Tom Raney on art. This will be followed by a new storyline in April 06 with artist Steve Dillon and then the return of Raney in June.

 

* ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR will bring us “President Thor” in May, with Mark Millar and Greg Land. The duo’s last story for the title, “Frightful” will start in May 06. The new creative team begins their soon-to-be-historic run in August.

 

* ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR / X-MEN will conclude the two-art mini epic that will begin in December’s ULTIMATE X-MEN / FANTASTIC FOUR. That exciting conclusion will be courtesy of writer Mike Carey and artist Pasqual Ferry and be delivered in February 06.

 

* The hugely-anticipated ULTIMATES 3 will be served up by fan-favorites Jeph Loeb and Joe Madureira in October 06.

 

* ULTIMATE EXTINCTION invades Earth in January, written by Warren Ellis and drawn by Brandon Peterson. The story will unite all the heroes of the Ultimate Universe against – Gah Lak Tus!

 

* Popular novelist Orson Scott Card will continue his story of the Ultimate Tony Stark in ULTIMATE IRON MAN 2, with art by Pasqual Ferry.

 

* ULTIMATE WOLVERINE VS HULK begins this December 05, by LOST creator Damon Lindelof and Leinil Francis Yu.

 

In addition to this senses-shattering line up of adventures, Marvel Entertainment is also very proud to announce the return of Annuals to the line, beginning in July. Creative teams will be announced soon.

 

Inaugurated in 2000 with ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #1, the Ultimate titles have captured the imagination of comic fans young and old with their unique re-imaginings of the iconic Marvel characters. Many of fans’ most favorite heroes and villains have been reintroduced with Ultimate incarnations and the books have become bestsellers, garnering much fan and critical acclaim. Marvel has added many more Ultimate titles to the line over the past 5 years and plans to grow the alternate universe at a steady pace, adding creators and stories that reinforce the company’s commitment to the highest quality.

 

Please visit Marvel.com for all lake-breaking news of Marvel’s Ultimate titles and all of their other sure-to-please classic Marvel Universe books.

 

So...Loeb + Mad for Ultimates vol 3, Dillon on UXM, and Ellis' epic Ultimate Extinction might actually make it out (though no promises)....lotta good news here.

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  • 3 months later...

i agree; im about ready to forgive Mad for Battle Chasers but im interested to see how his art style's gonna fit this book.

 

Ultimate Marvel news, including crossovers that dont invovle zombies...? :D

 

NRAMA: Over the last few months, and even longer than that you (meaning you Joe and Marvel) have focused a lot of energy on the Marvel Universe – Spider-Man: The Other and the new costume; Astonishing X-Men and the new core title teams; the Black Panther/Storm Wedding; Moon Knight; Nextwave; Annihilation; Newuniversal; Iron Man; the Winter Soldier in Captain America; and of course the whole Disassembled/New Avengers/House of M/the Illuminati/Civil War through line…

 

That’s not to say the Ultimate Line has been neglected, Ultimate Extinction is out there and last summer you guys came up with the whole “Gold Standard” angle, but it seems to not be quite the center of attention it once was.

 

Is this intentional or just circumstantial? Could the reason be Marvel doesn’t need it to be the center of attention it was once anymore?

 

JQ: It’s strictly a matter of focus, time, manpower, and how much people can actually absorb or focus.

 

I always compare it to the old Vaudeville routine with the guy spinning the twenty plates on sticks. We get the Ultimate Universe spinning as fast as it can, once we have it good and going, it’ll sustain itself for a while. So, now we have to shift over to the main universe and get it spinning nice and strong, we’ll keep an eye on Ultimates to make sure the momentum is still there. Okay, on to Spidey, spin those babies and get them going, check Ultimates, still going well, but lets get back to Ultimates to make sure it not only doesn’t fall and break, but it never even wobbles

 

It’s very tough to give giant pushes to everything at the same time. In many ways we don’t have the manpower to do it, and in many ways it’s not prudent. It’s like having three or four people screaming at the top of their lungs at the same time. You know there’s someone screaming, you just don’t know what they’re screaming about.

 

NRAMA: So we know Ultimate Spider-Man #100 is coming up, along with Loeb and Madureira’s Ultimates 3, and Bryan Singer’s Ultimate X-Men story and Bendis’ Ultimate Invasion in the future… Do any other plans exist to gear up the promotion of the line soon and can you tell us about any specific elements of those plans?

 

JQ: Well, in many ways you can see how the marketing is coming together on this as these events begin to line up and bunch up. The time for a new Ultimates campaign is very close and that’s just with the stuff that you know. We have a thing or two still up our sleeves. Don’t ever discount ... dare I say it out loud, it’s merely one word ... oh what the heck…

 

Crossover!

 

NRAMA: Uh oh. Just for the record, you’re on the record as being against a Marvel Universe/Ultimate crossover. So while we’ll indulge your tease for a few weeks, can you at least specify that you’re referring to an intra-Ultimate crossover?

 

JQ: Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying.

 

im gettin to a point where:

a) anytime a writer/editor says an idea will never happen, i dont believe them, and

b) not much would surprise me from Marvel right now.

 

2 things i think are really keepin me on board, personally. Hard to call yourself the House of Ideas if youre too scared to tell a guy's origin.

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  • 4 years later...

So I read a few of these back in the day with little or no context and I decided now that like everybody died in Ultimatum and things have rebooted that I'd find a torrent of all of them and plow through to the present. I'm about a third of the way through the list (a reading order came with the torrent) and honestly I'm starting to consider re-naming Ultimate Marvel "The Universe Where Everyone But Spider-Man is a Complete Fucking Asshole."

 

I'm liking Ultimate X-Men and Ultimate Spider-Man, Ultimate Fantastic Four is meh, and I know my eyes are clouded by the fact that I'm not reading it back when the Avengers still sucked but I cannot stand The Ultimates, it reads like Mark Millar is trying really hard to be Joss Whedon and doing a terrible job of it. Granted the fact that 616 Marvel has pretty much caught up and passed the Ultimate universe now is part of the reason but I still don't care for the book or any of the characters. I guess I'll see where things stand by the time Ultimatum kills pretty much everyone but Ultimate Spider-Man seems to be the only one I'll be picking up in trades thus far.

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weird to hear someone not digging the Ultimates.

 

Ultimate FF i left alone till Warren Ellis was around, had some good arcs. i forget who was writing when the Marvel Zombies showed, but that was alright, too...by the time the crossover went down with Ultimate Power, it wasnt my thing though. somewhere between Ultimate War & the really letdown trilogy of Ultimate Nightmare that Ellis started interestingly & dragged his nuts all over...anyway, you'd only miss a few arcs i thought were alright by skipping ultimate FF altogether, by me.

 

X-Men...Bendis followed Millar pretty well, i thought, since i liked Blockbuster and his other arc. Vaughn had some fun (if you make it that far, we'll see what you think of his take on Cable), by the time Kirkman showed up it was wearing thin as well, though. i wanna say it was Bendis that closed with a kinda crappy Ultimate Deadpool, then it went all Mojoverse and it was a better take but its still not a great story (Mojo's up there with Arcade as far as characters i just cant see as working). if you keep with it, itll get back to Ultimate Sinister & Kirkman's take on Apocalypse and a lotta rather forgetful things. honestly, at that point, i dont think anyone was reading anything but USM, hence the relaunch.

 

that said, i recall Ultimate Spidey being more or less good the whole way through.

 

by the way:

 

One've my favourite X-men books back inna day was the Trial Of Gambit(UXM #350). Jeph Loeb's been getting a bit dodge lately though, so here's to hoping they can carry the-- well, I'ma pray to Pythagoras they don't fuck the Ultimates Franchise.

 

this post is a gem of future horrors.

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