I gotta admit, when it comes to Ultimate Comics: The Ultimates, it can best be said I’ve been a bit of a glutton for punishment. Can issue #7 have a different effect? Let’s find out…
Ultimate Comics: The Ultimates #7
The City has been a major thorn in S.H.I.E.L.D.’s sides. Reed Richards has taken over most of Europe and established his Children of Tomorrow a serious threat for the world. Another issue that’s a potential threat is the rise of Tian… A southeast Asian power run by twin omega-level beings calling themselves Xorn and Zorn. Since Tian, despite a major coup against the original government testing its citizens with mutagens, has been mostly peaceful and kept to themselves, S.H.I.E.L.D. decides maybe the best thing to do is try to get in Tian’s bed and have them deal with Richards’ “Children”. After trying to contact the City, resulting in the death of their delegate, the People have decided to take S.H.I.E.L.D. up on their proposed alliance.
For six issues, Jonathan Hickman’s run on the Ultimates has been best described as a bit of a chore. It’s a little convoluted, it features a team that isn’t as advertised (which I can somewhat come to terms with as a marketing stunt), and it’s just been just out of my reach to understand. I’m not going to be so naive as to expect a slightly different take on what we’d normally see in the Marvel Universe proper, but I didn’t really expect The Ultimates to go the route of a more Image Comics angle. The series is overloaded with more military minded characters and an attitude that isn’t really my speed. Yes, the Ultimates were always a slightly more mature and more realistic view of what a world full of superheroes would be like, but that made the book so entertaining. All the characters had their motives and agendas, but at least there were likable characters. This book struggles on that level.
However, this issue was much more straightforward and a lot more entertaining as a whole. Is the book perfect? No, there are still elements of the story, the characters, and their motives that don’t quite sit right with me. All that said, this is much less convoluted as a whole. Nick Fury and his Ultimates have a big problem. They are outgunned and overmatched. So, seeing that there’s another group more on the level of Richards’ Children, hey, it’s time to go make friends. While the book doesn’t exactly manage a great deal of action, there are good scenes with the People negotiating with S.H.I.E.L.D. and ultimately having a shot fired against them from the Children. It builds to a nice crescendo, but it goes a bit farther to bring in another wild card with the Hulk being brought into the fray. It was a nice touch in a book that already gave me what I really wanted to see – a cohesion with both storylines introduced way back at the beginning.
Maybe I wanted something simpler out of this book. Maybe that’s sometimes my own personal downfall, but I don’t think that’s too much to ask for and I don’t think it’s too far out of the realm of possibility for anyone to ask from a story. Sometimes you get that real deep story or concept that shines, but it’s usually wrapped around a much easier flowing idea. Right from the beginning, The Ultimates just went deep and kept digging. Before long, we were all a bit lost and trying to figure out how to pull ourselves back up to the light.
When I was at the very edge of wanting to give this title up, this issue does buy the title a couple more months.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Much more concise and flowing story. Good art from Esad Ribic throughout the entire run. It’s just too bad that Ribic’s art has been buried beneath a chore of a title.||Still struggling with motives and likability of characters.|
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