Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Ultimate Avengers

In an effort to make more money, Marvel reinvented their superheroes into being a whole new universe of newer, hipper versions of their standard heroes. Because why not? This is the Ultimates universe, because they are all the Ultimate heroes. Which doesn't make it at all confusing that the Avengers are Ultimatised, and called... The Ultimates. On recommendation, I got the collected sets of Volume 1 and Volume 2.

So these are the Avengers, but not. Due to being done when Marvel were reinventing the movies, these Avengers are formed under SHIELD, which is led by Samuel L Jackson Nick Fury. There's a lot of set up in Volume 1, also known as 'character development', which involves various heroes being stupid and petty and annoying. And then there's an alien invasion to take up the second part. In Volume 2, we get the team breaking up, then coming back together again, because that's what happens in superhero team comics, and could easily end up happening in the next Avengers movie.

The new versions are... interesting, but variable. Hulk is more amusing, although far more violent, and actually has some form of repercussions to his rampages. Iron Man is... more of a team with Tony at the head in the suit? It's not entirely clear, and I don't have Ultimate Iron Man to find out. And the Iron Man outfit looks stupid. Captain America comes across as a bully and a jerk, really, although his character never really interested me. And Giant Man, Wasp and Hawkeye help fill up the ranks.

While I have many a compilation, these compilations do highlight the episodic nature of the issues, with discontinuity between 'this issue is character based' and 'this issue is a big fight'. As an alternative universe, it's decent enough, but given that it is different, I do feel that I need to be aware of the wider universe to fully get these stories.



evildicemonkey said...

I largely agree with you but for one thing, the Ultimate series was coming out waaaaay before the movies started to appear, Samual L Jackson being cast as Nick Fury is a direct result of his look in the comic book.

The scene (in volume 1 I think) with the Avengers sitting around talking about who would play them in a film took on a 'new dimension' when SLJ was announced as Nick Fury.

If you want to talk about the movies influencing the comics then you want to look at Nick Fury Jr. He is the SLJ character from the films added in to the 'proper' Marvel continuity as Nick Fury's previosuly unknown son.

Jamas Enright said...

Yeah, I wasn't sure of the time line wrt the movies, but I did feel that this NF was more like the SLJ NF than the white one (is there an actor typically associated with that version), so made that comment in that vein.

evildicemonkey said...

The "classic" Nick Fury was played by David Hasslehoff, go watch that movie for some comparison!

Jamas Enright said...

The Hoff? Yeah, I can buy that!