“Whenever an era dies, another era begins”. That seems to be the case in this issue. People almost everywhere seem to be talking the big topic: the new Ultimate Spider-Man. This is the issue readers have been looking forward to the most, but did it deliver? All this plus: Reed Richards is alive? And what’s the big secret about mutants that everyone is about to find out? Well read the review to find out and comment below! Commenting will make me happy! (Damn, I almost sound like CrazyChris…)
Writers: Brian Michael Bendis, Jonathan Hickman & Nick Spencer
Artists: Sara Pichelli, Salvador Larroca & Clayton Crain
Colorists: Justin Ponsor & Frank D’Armata
Letterers: VC’s Cory Petit & Clayton Cowles
Cover: Mark Bagley, Andy Lanning & Justin Ponsor
Story: Spider-Man – Bendis, Pichelli & Ponsor
A random man is being beaten down by the Kangaroo until suddenly the new Spider-Man arrives on the scene. The two of them duke it out but the new webslinger doesn’t exactly fare well as he’s thrown into a pizza diner. During the battle people are commenting that his costume is in bad taste (due to the original Spidey recently dying of course). After managing to luckily beat Kangaroo, the new Spidey wall crawls up a building, leaving people questioning how Spider-Man is alive. Once he makes it to the roof top, the new Spidey removes his mask in exhaustion, revealing himself to be Miles Morales (As everyone now on the internet knows).
The art is fine, the writing was okay though this was supposed to be the lead in to introduce us to the new Ultimate Spider-Man. I am looking forward to seeing Sara Pichelli’s artwork in the upcoming new series. She does a good job at paying attention to details, especially on this Spidey’s costume. It looks better than Peter’s wrestling costume, yes, but it also does look like it was stitched together and doesn’t exactly look professional (ie. Look at the gloves, the loose neck of the mask, the feet and the kneepads). I want to tell everyone whose flipping over the idea of the new Spidey to calm down and breathe slowly.
When I was buying my comics, the guy who works at the store was asking himself why this issue was in a plastic bag. Of course I would say, “Because it reveals whose going to be the new Ultimate Spider-Man.” By now that doesn’t even matter because everyone is riled up by the fact that the new web slinger is half black/ half Hispanic. It’s a shame that Marvel let the news out a day before the issue came out to get people to see that, “HEY, LOOK WHAT WE DID! SPIDER-MAN IS BLACK NOW! SEE, SEE, ISN’T THAT NEWS TO TALK ABOUT??” I don’t see the big deal.
The Ultimate Universe wasn’t doing so well for a while so they knew they needed to breathe some life back into it. Their idea: killing Peter Parker and it worked. This gimmick is working for Marvel so far as it’s getting people everywhere talking. I was planning on talking more about the new Spidey but A) Donovan Grant recently posted an awesome editorial on that subject which pretty much sums up my thoughts as well and B) I’m just a reviewer, my thoughts wouldn’t matter anyway.
What I do want to say about this is that it doesn’t matter if a classic character is replaced with another that has a different colored skin, different religion or sexual interests. All that should matter is how the story is written and how the new character can be different from the original so that we don’t have to say, “He’s Peter Parker but African American”. The writing is what counts the most.
Story: Reed Richards – Hickman, Larroca & D’Armata
After the events in Ultimate Comics Doom, Reed Richards is floating through the Negative Zone until he manages to find a way back home. Once he teleports back to Earth, he promises that he’ll fix everything that is wrong with their world. Moving to the present, Reed has started what seems to be a “Future Foundation” with a group of people. He tells them that it’s either evolve or become extinct and that not all of them are going to make it.
For those who didn’t read the Ultimate Enemy trilogy, Reed Richards is basically filling in the role of Doctor Doom in the Ultimate Universe. I quite enjoyed this part of the issue and I’m glad something is being done with Reed during this transition into the new Ultimate Universe. I mentioned the Future Foundation in my summary because Reed’s set up near the end of the story kind of references a new looking “FF” uniform designs. I’m not surprised due to the fact Hickman wrote this and he’s writing FF in the regular universe.
In Hickman’s run on Fantastic Four, he created that in other continuities that the Reed Richards of those worlds were driven to “solve everything”. The Reed we know in regular comics is a good hero, has a fantastic family, and even has his caring father Nathaniel Richards back. In the Ultimate Universe, Reed didn’t have that luxury of having a loving father and even had hard times connecting with his Fantastic Four. With his dark version of a Future Foundation, Reed may be a foe that the Ultimates may struggle with down the line (I mention the Ultimates due to the fact that Hickman is writing that series soon enough). Larroca’s art fit quite nicely here and it was great to look at on these pages.
Story: Valerie Cooper – Spencer & Crain
Basically, in quick some up form, the world’s about to find out that the United States government created mutants.
For those who haven’t read Ultimate Origins, the story showed that the first ever mutant was Wolverine who was created by man. The X-gene managed to spread when they accidently let loose the mutation in the general public. I didn’t care much for the dialog in this story and the only thing worth mentioning was the last bit with Valerie Cooper on the last panel. Considering though with Ultimatum that being a mutant is illegal, the thought that mutants were created by the government should be interesting to delve into when reading Ultimate X-Men. Clayton Crain’s artwork, after reviewing the recent Carnage mini, has grown on me. I don’t know if it suits well in the Ultimate Universe but I’ve almost come to tolerate it. It does help set the mood on the last panel though as this dark secret may get out. I’m already interested to see where that goes.
Sadly the other stories were ignored by everyone because of the recent news with Ultimate Spider-Man. I expected more out of Bendis in his story, Spencer didn’t meet my standards unlike his other stories in this mini but Hickman did an alright job with setting up Reed Richards. 3.5 out of 5 unmasked web slingers.
Tell me what you thought. Are you liking how things are being set up so far?